Equine (England)

Framework status: Current (latest) issue

Framework details

Framework ID: FR03178
Issue number: 4
Issued: 16 December 2014

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Equine (England)
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Issued by

Contact name: Sandie Absalom
Telephone number: 02476 696996
Please download the framework for email contact information.


Defining Apprenticeships

An Apprenticeship is a job with an accompanying skills development programme under an Apprenticeship Agreement designed by employers in the sector. It allows the apprentice to gain technical knowledge and real practical experience, along with functional and personal skills, required for their immediate job and future career. These are acquired through a mix of learning in the workplace, formal off the job training and the opportunity to practice and embed new skills in a real work context. This broader mix differentiates the Apprenticeship experience from training delivered to meet narrowly focused job needs.

All apprentices commencing their Apprenticeship must have an Apprenticeship Agreement between the employer and the apprentice. This can be used to reinforce the understanding of the requirements of the Apprenticeship.

On completion of the Apprenticeship the apprentice must be able to undertake the full range of duties, in the range of circumstances appropriate to the job, confidently and competently to the standard set by the industry.

The Equine Industry

The Equine industry covers a wide range of areas including: riding schools, livery yards, competition yards, racing yards, clubs and hunts, instructors, working horses and studs and diversified Equine activities. This provides a range of jobs such as: maintaining the horses' health and welfare, riding horses for exercise, cleaning and taking care of the horse tack and preparing horses for competitions. There are many organisations that work within the Equine industry including British Horse Society (BHS) representing over 69,899 members, and the racing industry supports 100,000 direct, indirect and associated jobs.

Research carried out by Lantra in 2010 found that micro-businesses dominate the land-based and environmental sector with 97% of businesses in England within the industry employing fewer than ten members of staff. Many Equine businesses are small employers with 51% employing fewer than nine employees and 44% not employing any staff. Therefore, each person has an important role to play within the organisation. This emphasises the need for employees to have a variety of skills to help the organisation grow and remain profitable. Skills such as customer relations, written and oral communication and planning and organising are all deemed to be of value to the industry and are often cited as a skills gap.

The Equine industry is important for the land-based and environmental sector in England, representing 2% of businesses and 2% of employment within the sector. It is vital that the industry has qualifications for entrants so that they can maintain high levels of Equine health and welfare. The Intermediate and Advanced Apprenticeships in Equine provides an entry route into the sector and is suitable for those people who have a keen interest and are looking for a career working with horses.  Following successful completion there are many opportunities available which could include specialising within the profession, completing other vocational courses or progressing into Further and/or Higher Education.

This Apprenticeship framework encompasses the skills needed by new entrants to ensure they have the right mix of skills and those already employed have the opportunity to upskill. This will ensure that employees within Equine have the skills required to be competent in their employment.

The industry values the Apprenticeship as an entry route into the sector which is evidenced by the growth in the completions of the Apprenticeship in England over the last three years:

  • 2013/2014 - 1031 completions
  • 2012/2013 - 962 completions
  • 2011/2012 - 500 completions

During the review of this Apprenticeship, Lantra involved the English members of the industry, such as British Horse Society (BHS), British Horseracing Authority (BHA), The Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association, Horse  Sanctuaries and Riding for the Disabled Association.

It is the view of the Equine industry that because of the nature of their business, work-based learning through Apprenticeships is a good way for apprentices to learn the necessary skills required to work in a practical environment. This important entry mechanism has therefore been highlighted by employers in the Equine Industry Action Plan, which states the need to prioritise and increase the awareness and uptake of the Equine Apprenticeship framework.

The Equine framework offers three pathways that are reflective of the areas of work within the Equine industry:

Horse Care, where apprentices will maintain the health and welfare of horses, prepare horses and customers for treks and carry out other general horse care duties.

  • Job Roles at Level 2 may include: Assistant Groom, Assistant Stud Groom/Hand, Trek Assistant.
  • Job Roles at Level 3 may include: Groom, Assistant Yard Manager, Trek Leader, Intermediate Instructor/Level 3 Coach.

Racehorse Care apprentices will carry out general health and welfare duties, working horses through riding and preparing horse for races.

  • Job Roles at Level 2 may include: Assistant Groom, Assistant Stud Groom/Hand, Apprentice Jockey, Conditional Jockey, Work Rider.
  • Job Roles at Level 3 may include: Groom, Assistant Yard Manager, Jockey.

Harness Horse Care apprentices will carry out general health and welfare duties as well as learning to work with horses in harness.

  • Job Roles at Level 2 may include: Assistant Groom,  Supporting Harness Horse Trainer.
  • Job Roles at Level 3 may include: Harness Horse Groom, Harness Horse Driver/Assistant, Harness Horse Trainer.

Further information on the Equine industry can be found at:  www.lantra.co.uk/research.

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Equine (England)
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