The equestrian economy of Scotland is worth £326million to our economy driven by out 83,848 horses. Seventy seven per cent of which regularly see a farrier and the postcodes with the highest equine populations are AB EH PH and KY.
These statistics are among other interesting findings thrown up by research undertaken in 2018.
During the summer BHS Scotland and Robert Gordon’s University commissioned an MSC Postgraduate Project on the subject of the Scottish Equestrian Economy. Our researcher was James Mahoney from Calgary in Canada and he used the weeks encompassing Blair Castle International Horse Trails to carry out his research and a questionnaire was also sent to all BHS Scotland members via our monthly newsletter.
His brief from BHS Scotland was; “Despite the general misconception that horses are a luxury pursuit for wealthy people, the horse community remains the poor relation of the rural sector. Unlike farming, forestry and tourism sectors who receive government subsidies, horse riding enterprises and coaches provide highly effective; learning, sporting, health, and therapeutic benefits for local people in line with 4 of the 5 Scottish Government Objectives:- Smarter, Healthier, Safer and Stronger, and Greener.
Crippling business rates continue to be one of the greatest challenges affecting equestrian enterprises, and as such the horse community struggle to see how they fit with the government’s wealthier and fairer strategic objective.