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Posted on 20th March 2021

As your livery yard increases in size of clients and horses, issues can arise that had not previously been considered, this may include safety rules or problems which may affect your insurance cover or make you liable in the event of an accident or injury.

The list below outlines some basic considerations for Yard Owners and Managers when contemplating rules for their livery clients and any visitors with regards to the use of facilities, land and property, as well as covering basic safety issues. It is worth checking and consulting Health and Safety Guidelines when creating your rules, and also as a reference point for your visitors and clients.

Below are some guidelines, and at the bottom of the page, you will find resources relating to the content including additional information and template documents.

On the Yard

  • Use of Hose- areas to be used, reasons to be used and times to be used – i.e not to be used when ground is freezing to reduce risk of creating slippery ground conditions
  • Where horses can and cannot be tied up- i.e not close to tools, arena, on tie rings with bailer twin, certain distance from other horses/ stables.
  • Where horses can be fed- i.e only in the stable, in the field.
  • Who feeds horses breakfast – i.e first livery could give all horses AM feed if left by stable
  • Haynets hung on yard- i.e where they are permitted, who is responsible for cleaning up spilled hay or feed.
  • Haynet filling and use of additional hay – i.e for hay inclusive livery packages
  • Ordering system for hay and feed if from yard or yard organised supplier.
  • Bedding that is allowed on the yard
  • Rodent prevention- who is responsible for clearing spilt food, hay, straw and securing of feed containers.
  • Feed room- who can enter – i.e if full livery no requirement for liveries to enter), keeping the door closed to prevent horses, dogs or rodents getting in.
  • Rules for yard tidiness- replacing tools, sweeping etc for individual areas and communal areas (such as tie up areas, tack rooms etc
  • Designated areas for tools, headcollars and other equipment
  • Picking out feet on yard – i.e only in stable or on yard but use of buckets to catch dirt
  • Use of muck heap and heaping it up
  • Provisions for use of water in event of frozen supply- i.e bowser or stockpiling water in advance, restricted use

Use of Facilities

  • Booking process (if any) for use of arenas and riding areas and the system to be used– i.e diary, social media group, white board.
  • If ‘guests’ of liveries are allowed to use the arena/ riding facilities on livery owned horses – i.e if a friend comes to ride their horse
  • Number of users in an arena at any one time.
  • Use and storage of jumps, poles etc
  • Poo-picking and raking of the school.
  • Permission for lunging, long reining, free lunging or loose turnout in arenas.
  • Use of hats
  • Rules for external users of areas and riding facilities (times to hire, wearing of hats, cleaning up, access, lighting)

In the Fields

  • Closure and securing of gates – i.e whether empty fields are still to have gates closed/ secured
  • Allowance of head collars or grazing muzzles when turned out
  • Rules on horses being left out on their own or after dark
  • Rules for turnout if weather is wet, muddy, stormy, snow etc
  • Ways to communicate with the yard for turnout arrangements (ideal if you rotate fields regularly or to advise of restricted turnout in bad weather)- i.e white board
  • Poo-picking- who is responsible and whether this is done year round.
  • Provisions for restricted grazing
  • Supplementary forage in winter months/ when short on grazing- if additional hay is allowed/ provided in fields.

Safety and Security

  • Set visiting hours
  • Smoking only in designated areas (if at all)
  • Responsibility for locking tack rooms whether this is done by yard owner or last on yard
  • Responsibility of closing yard doors/ gates at the end of the day
  • Use of fire extinguishers ie showing livery clients where they are, training in use, basic fire safety,
  • Horse escape process in event of emergency and an emergency gathering point for people
  • Ensuring valuable items are not left out or in sight in cars- tack, hats, saddles, rugs where possible.
  • Safety signage – i.e yard rules, fire extinguishers, first aid point
  • If there is a first aider and/ or first aid kit on the yard

Horse Health/ Admin

  • If there is a trained Equine First Aider (specific course) and equine first aid kit on the yard
  • Worming programme whether whole yard or individually arranged and whether worm testing or wormers given
  • Ensuring all livery horses and visiting horses (i.e coming to hire facilities) have vaccinations, tetanus etc
  • Rules for new horses to the yard- i.e individual turnout, period of isolation
  • Authority to call the vet to a liveries horse in the event of an emergency
  • Biosecurity procedures for new liveries and liveries leaving to attend events


  • Checking horses have necessary third party insurance and checking it has been renewed upon expiry
  • Whether you keep a copy or view their vaccination certificates, passport etc upon arrival
  • To make sure you have contact details of all horse owners and an emergency contact for them and whether these are available to other yard members in your absence
  • Livery contracts
  • Requesting insurance of visiting professionals to the yard- instructors, farriers etc


  • Permission for liveries to care for other clients horses long or short term
  • Permitted people to look after or ride clients horses – i.e non liveries such as partners, parents or third parties being paid for their services
  • To be notified of horse absences from the yard – i.e travelling away for competitions, riding camps
  • Responsibility of repairs- i.e whether horse owner or yard owner depending upon incident

Visitors to the Yard

  • Whether children are allowed on the yard and supervision of any children on the yard
  • Whether you require to be notified of visitors to the yard- instructors, farriers, vets etc.
  • Use of external freelance grooms, instructors, riders etc whether this is allowed
  • Permitting dogs on the yard (either on a lead, in vehicles or out loose on the yard) consider dog mess, where this is permitted and if it has to be cleaned up.
  • Rules for those who share or part loan livery horses and the responsibility of those owners.
  • Rules on clothing- i.e no open toed shoes on yard, body protectors worn when riding


  • To notify of any unfamiliar vehicles at the yard (clients to report to yard owner/ manager)
  • Only park in designated areas, not in front of gates/ arena entrance or horse tie-up areas.
  • Whether pets are allowed to be left in vehicles – i.e barking dogs


 This guide can also be downloaded in PDF here:

You can find further details and resources on this topic on the following YOH Resource pages:

Client Administration

Livery Contracts


This information as provided above is intended to provide guidance and areas for consideration for those intending to enter into such arrangements, and is best advice to our knowledge at the time of publication following extensive research. Anyone proposing to enter into agreements, processes or actions based upon the information contained herein are advised to carry out their own due diligence to ensure the information above remains current and factual. 

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