Brexit: Different Certificate of Professional Competence required for grooms travelling to the EU

Friday, 05 February 2021

Now that Britain has left the EU, the process for transporting horses to Europe has changed. This includes the type of documentation and certification you’re required to hold, especially if you’re travelling in connection with an economic activity.  

Under the Council Regulation of Welfare of Animals in Transit 1/2005, professional grooms or attendants must hold a Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) to transport animals, including horses, in connection with an economic activity. The type of CPC that you’ll need will depend on the duration of your journey – Type 1 covers you for journeys of over 65km that last less than eight hours, while Type 2 is for journeys that are over eight hours. 

The Certificates of Competence in the Welfare of Travelling Horses (Level 3 Award for Long Journeys), which previously covered UK grooms travelling to the EU, are no longer valid outside of the UK following Brexit. Instead, if you’re a groom who’s planning to travel horses into the EU, you now need a European equivalent qualification. 

If you are accompanying horses which are moving in connection with an economic activity, you will need to apply to obtain this certification in a country within the EU. Some, including the Republic of Ireland, Belgium and the Netherlands, offer an online option.

For further information, click here. This links explains the situation from a Republic of Ireland perspective, where the required qualification is known as a Certificate in Equine Transport and is valid for ten years. Obtaining this qualification will cover for all journeys in the EU.

Journeys within the UK

Certificates of Competence are still recognised in the UK and are a requirement for transporting horses for commercial purposes in this country.

For journeys of under 65km, you don’t need a CPC but must carry documentation stating:

  • the origin and ownership of the horses
  • the place of departure
  • the date and time of departure
  • the intended destination and expected duration of the journey

If you’re carrying out one of the following activities, you don’t require a CPC:

  • travelling to or from a veterinary practice or under the advice of your vet
  • travelling your own horse to a training facility or competition
  • transporting one horse, or two horses with the help of an attendant

Training opportunities

The British Grooms Association is hosting a virtual training course for the qualification recognised by the EU on 8 February. To book a place or find out more information, please email British Grooms Association members will receive a discount on the cost of the course.