MANY of your readers might see the approach of summer as a good time to arrange horse riding for their children.

They should be warned, however, that such an experience might be consigned to history if the current interpretation of the 1971 Animals Act is not reconsidered.

Riding establishment's have found insurance costs rocketing since a House of Lords interpretation of the 1971 Animals Act extended absolute liability to the owners of any perfectly normal animal that causes injury simply by behaving in a way that is typical of its species.

In practice, it means that, even where a responsible business has taken every possible preventative precaution, if a horse bolts after being spooked, the owner can face unlimited liability for any damage or injury.

In our increasingly litigious society this has meant that some equine establishments have found it impossible to obtain insurance at all effectively putting them out of business overnight.

The only riding experience youngsters of the future might enjoy is on the back of a rocking horse unless a campaign to change a law which threatens to put riding establishments out of business succeeds.

In 2012 the UK will be hosting the Olympic Games but unless we can break the shackles of litigation, we are threatening the fantastic traditions of horsemanship which have always made the UK such a force in the equestrian world.

We will effectively be saying to our children, sorry, but there's nowhere you can go to learn to ride.

Anyone who wants to support the campaign can give us at the Country Land and Business Association (CLA) a call and we'll send them a pre-prepared postcard to send to their local MP.

Rupert Ashby South East Regional Director Country Land and Business Association 01435 865106