Monday, 10 February 2020

Campaign reply - Please support a ban on the use of the whip in horse racing

Several constituents have written to me with a campaign email, “support a ban on the use of the whip in horse racing.”

As a principle I never sign early day motions as they very rarely achieve anything whilst at the same time running up costs to the taxpayer.

This industry is already one of the most heavily scrutinised in the world and quite rightly so as all animals should be treated appropriately. However sometimes there are campaign groups seeking to introduce ever more draconian  regulation as a disguised attempt at a total ban on horse racing. As a Conservative, I do not believe in banning things in general.

As a family we have been horse owners and lovers and so animal health, welfare and their treatment is always of interest.
During a recent Westminster hall debate the Minister did take note of many points raised over the concerns for racehorses . It is also worth noting that the debate itself was an invaluable tool in raising awareness amongst MPs and the public around racehorse welfare and treatment. That has the effect of  influencing decision-making in Government and Parliament.

I firmly believe these debates makes all interested parties take note and the British Horseracing Authority will no doubt review all its' procedures if only to ward off possible punitive legislation. My own view is that I am generally against banning things and over legislating. However, this is a matter I can raise with Ministers when I see them.