Rural theft costing £42.3m a year as NFU Mutual urges horse riders to insure their saddles and more

13th March 2014

Rural theft cost the UK an estimated £42.3 million during 2012 says rural insurer NFU Mutual. It warns that among this figure £1.3 m of equine and livestock-related equipment stolen in the UK.

With many horse riders contemplating the purchase of new and expensive tack ahead of the competition season, NFU Mutual is urging riders to keep an eye out for potential thieves.

Riders will typically attend a competition with thousands of pounds worth of equipment. Saddles in particular are designed specifically to suit the needs of the individual horse and rider, making it very expensive to replace.

Alison Cox, equine specialist at NFU Mutual, said: “Tack theft is a constant worry for horse owners and the theft of these essential items is a blow to the rider’s pockets, particularly if the items are uninsured or under-insured.

“It is important that people review their insurance policies to make sure that they have the right level of cover in place for their tack taking into account the replacement cost of old tack for new which could be much more expensive. The cost of the individual components of tack such as stirrup leathers and irons can also quickly mount up.

“To help avoid theft, horse owners are reminded to keep their horsebox or car and trailer locked at all times when attending a show and to consider security marking their tack.”

Rural theft cost the UK an estimated £42.3 million during 2012 and according to NFU Mutual’s claims data, £1.3 million of claims involved items commonly used by horse owners and farmers including trailers, fencing equipment, tack and feed.

“One of the most important things you can do is take photos of your equipment. A clear picture with a close up of any distinguishing marks will help the police identify your stolen property and it will also allow you to prove ownership if you see it offered for sale,” says Cox.

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