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Grooming and Yard Management Careers

Assistant Groom

An Assistant Groom is a more junior level than Groom. A groom is responsible for the day-to-day care of horses.

Responsibilities include:
• Grooming
• Possible riding
• Tacking up
• Care of tack and equipment
• General yard duties
• Attending competitions
• Everyday care of the horse.

Necessary qualifications/experience

The minimum level of qualification for employment as an Assistant Groom should be the BHS Stage 2 Care (EQL Level 2 Diploma in Horse Knowledge and Care). Alternatively, you could take the EQL Level 2 WBD Diploma or SVQ in Horse Care. These can be taken from 16 years old.

Assistant Grooms looking for riding as part of their duties should have BHS Stage 2 Riding (EQL Level 2 Diploma in BHS Riding Horses) or have taken the riding option on a Level 2 Work Based Diploma/SVQ.

Personal specification

Grooms are expected to be hard-working, determined, have a passion for horses and have good general fitness. Early mornings and late finishes are not uncommon so be prepared for long hours.

Groom

A Groom is responsible for the day-to-day care of horses. You will usually be in sole charge of caring for the horses, and may be responsible for supervising junior members of staff, depending on the size of the yard. Most grooms will live on-site, and accommodation may be included in the salary.

Responsibilities include:
• Grooming
• Tacking up
• Exercising the horses (may include riding)
• Care of tack and equipment
• Preparing for, and attending competitions
• Everyday care of the horse
• General yard duties
• May include keeping records of vaccinations, worming, farrier etc.

Necessary qualifications/experience

To be employed as a Groom, you should have BHS Stage 3 Care (EQL Level 3 Diploma in Horse Knowledge and Care), or the equivalent level of WBD or SVQ.

A Groom may also be required to school and exercise the horses under their care. A minimum of BHS Stage 3 Riding (EQL Level 3 Diploma in BHS Riding Horses) should be required for this.

You might also have to transport the horse/s to and from competition, so a HGV licence would be a benefit.

Personal specification

Grooms are expected to be hard working, determined, have a passion for horses and have good general fitness. Early mornings and late finishes are not uncommon so be prepared for long hours.

BHS Register of Grooms

The minimum qualification to be able to join the BHS Register of Grooms is the BHS Stage 3 Care (EQL Level 3 Diploma in Horse Knowledge and Care).

When you join the Register, you'll receive numerous including free publicity in British Horse magazine, the equestrian press and our other mailings; optional public liability insurance; free inclusion on our website;, free ID cards - and more.

To find more information regarding the Register of Grooms please contact the BHS Training team who will be happy to help. For more information, browse our website, email roi@bhs.org.uk or call the Education team on 02476 840508.

Yard Manager

There are different types of yard management which consists of: Head Groom, Equine Yard Manager, Riding Centre Manager and Stud Manager.

Responsibilities include:
• Running the yard
• Caring for the horses
• Dealing with clients
• Managing staff
• Organise training plans for horses
• Implementing health and safety
• Managing records for vaccinations, working etc.
• Organising shows and events at the yard or centre
• Transporting horses.

Necessary qualifications/experience

To become a Yard Manager, a minimum of the BHS Stage 4 Care (EQL Level 4 Diploma in BHS Horse Knowledge, Care and Management should be required. In some cases, the BHS Stage 4 Riding (EQL Level 4 Diploma in BHS Riding and Training Horses) would also be useful.

The BHS Stage 4 Care qualification will also allow progression onto the BHS’s most senior horse care exam, the BHS Stable Manager’s Certificate, which allows you to supervise and train staff and students.

Personal specification

Yard managers need to demonstrate good organisation skills, be authoritative, and have a passion for horses.


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