Changes to Horse Passport Legislation
All applications for Passports received after 1st January 2016 will require the animal to be microchipped and identified by a Veterinary Surgeon.
Please apply for application forms PRIOR to microchipping from the Secretary (see contacts page).
At a recent Council Meeting it was decided by Council that with immediate effect all foal registrations would require a DNA hair sample from both the dam and the foal to accompany the application. There will be NO extra charges incurred by the breeder. These samples would be held in the office and not be processed unless required in the future. Sample bags will be forwarded from the office with directions, and once identified, a bar code from the foals microchip will be required to seal both bags. This should be returned to the office with the foal registration.
As a Passport Issuing Authority (P.I.O.) the Dartmoor Pony Society issues Passports for:
- Pedigree Dartmoor ponies (Passports with green covers)
- Ponies upgraded through the Dartmoor Pony Society/Dutchy of Cornwall scheme SR1 and SR2 (Passports with blue covers)
- Part bred Dartmoor ponies (Passports with Yellow covers)
In addition the Dartmoor Pony Society issues Passports for non pedigree equines including Donkeys and Mules. These are:
- Dartmoor ponies eligible for Heritage Trust List status (Passports with mauve covers)
- Horses, Ponies, Donkeys and Mules of no known breeding and not eligible for entry into any Breed Society stud book (Passports with pink covers).
If you have purchased any animal with a Passport issued by the Dartmoor Pony Society (P.I.O. 826021) with a pink or mauve cover the transfer of ownership fee is £15.00 (from 1st April 2014). Please make your cheque payable to Dartmoor Pony Society and send the passport to the Registered Office, Swn Yr Afon, Thornhill Road, Cwmgwili SA14 6PT.
When sending Passports by post obtain at the very least a Certificate of Posting and pack the Passport in a padded envelope or similar to avoid damage and please ensure the correct postage is paid.
Members with Pedigree, Supplementary Register or Part bred ponies please refer to your DPS diary for fees.
Non members please contact the office on 01269 844303 if you have purchased a pony with a green, blue or yellow Dartmoor Pony Society passport.
Please take good care of your Passport, it is a legal document and is issued for the life of the animal. Replacements are expensive and involve undertaking extensive and time consuming procedures.
Legal Responsibilities of Owners in relation to Equine Passports
It is a legal requirement for all horses and ponies to be issued with a passport. Horse Passport law is governed by the commission Regulation EC 504/2008, and in England by the Horse Passport regulations 2009, and where applicable, any subsequent amendments or successors to these regulations. Passports are required throughout the EU for identification, effective disease control and in order to protect the human food chain.
Owners and keepers with primary responsibility must ensure their horses are correctly identified and be able to produce the passport without delay when required. All horses, ponies, donkeys and other equinae are required to have a passport from 6 months of age, or by 31st December in the year of their birth, whichever is the later.
A horse’s passport must be kept with him at all times. This includes any time the horse leaves the yard, such as to go to a show, on loan or away for schooling. It is illegal to travel a horse without their passport, unless they are being transported for emergency veterinary treatment. The passport must be produced within three hours of it being requested by enforcement agencies. The passport may be requested at any time but the most common situations where a horse’s passport will be requested include:
- When the animal is moved into or out of Great Britain
- When the animal is used at a competition
- When the animal is moved to new premises
- When the animal is presented at a slaughterhouse for slaughter
- When the animal is sold
- When the animal is used for breeding purposes.
The passport must accompany the horse at all times, except:
- When stabled or on pasture and the passport can be produced without delay
- When it is moved temporarily on foot in the vicinity of the holding and the passport can be produced without delay
- When it is moved on foot between summer and winter grazing and the passport be presented at the holding of departure
- Unweaned and accompanied by their dam or foster mare
- When it is participating in training or competition which requires them to leave the event venue
- When moved or transported under emergency conditions
Vets will require the passport when prescribing many common veterinary medicines, (for example “Bute”) and will ensure the horse in question is then permanently excluded from the human food chain by signing part II of Section IX of the passport.
The Meat Hygiene Service (MHS) is responsible for enforcing the checks carried out at slaughterhouses, and Local Authorities (Trading Standards Departments) are responsible for enforcing the law elsewhere. As with all government legislation, there are penalties that may be applied by the courts for non-compliance. Most offences have a fine of up to £5,000, two years’ imprisonment or both.
Applications for equine passports can only be accepted for micro-chipped animals, and the owner or keeper must ensure that the equine does not already have an existing passport. When the passport is received, it should be carefully checked to ensure all the details are correct, and then signed where required on the owner’s page.
No animal may have more than one passport. Passports are the property of the Passport issuing organisation (PIO) and the passport must be returned to the issuing PIO:
- If the animal changes ownership (within 30 days)
- If any alterations are required (for eg. update of adult colour, castration etc)
- If extra pages are required for vaccination records etc
- If the document is damaged
- When the animal dies (within 30 days)
- Section IX part II has been signed to permanently exclude the horse from the human food chain. (within 14 days)
Passports may still be acquired for horses older than the passport deadline, provided there is no existing passport for the animal. Applications should be made to the appropriate PIO for the breed of the horse, and should include appropriate checks and fees. Before the passport is issued to the owner, the Issuing PIO will sign part II of Section IX to permanently exclude the horse from the human food chain.
If the passport is lost, a duplicate may be requested from the original PIO. On receipt of appropriate fees and checks, a duplicate passport may be issued, in which part II of Section IX will have been signed by the PIO, to permanently exclude the animal from the human food chain. The Duplicate passport will be stamped as a duplicate, and should the original passport ever be found, it must be returned to the Issuing PIO immediately.
Transfers of Ownership
The horse passport does not constitute proof of ownership of the horse. However, it is a requirement under the Horse Passport (England) Legislation to register a change of ownership with the relevant Passport Issuing Organisation (PIO) within 30 days of acquiring a horse. The issuing PIO may require a completed transfer form and fees.
It is an offence to sell a horse without a passport. Sale of any horse should not be completed if the passport has not been provided. The passport must match the horse in question. If the purchaser does not receive the horse’s passport, they will also be committing an offence when transporting the horse to its new home.
Return of the Passport
In the event of the death of any horse, the passport must be returned to the issuing PIO for cancellation within 30 days of the death. Owners may request the return of a passport following cancellation. Any such returned passport will be clearly stamped ‘invalid’ to prevent any fraudulent use. Slaughterhouses will return passports to the PIO concerned directly.
Data Protection The Data Protection Act 1998 - Fair Processing Notice
Purpose of this Fair Processing Notice
The purpose of this Fair Processing Notice is to inform equine owners of the use that Defra will make of the personal data that they supply when applying for an equine passport.
The following are Data Controllers, as defined in section 1(1) of the Data Protection Act 1998, in respect of the personal data processed in relation to equine ownership:
Defra (including the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA), an Executive Agency of Defra)
The Devolved Administrations, as follows:
Scottish Government (jointly with the Scottish Agricultural Organisation Society Ltd);
Welsh Government; and
Northern Ireland Executive
Passport Issuing Organisations (PIOs)
Enforcement Authorities, including Local Authorities and the Police Service, etc
Defra is a Data Controller in respect of personal data relating to equine owners in England or equine owners registered with a PIO that Defra has authorised.
A Devolved Administration is a data controller in respect of personal data relating to equine owners in its jurisdiction (Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) or equine owners registered with a PIO that the Devolved Administration has authorised.
A PIO (authorised by Defra or a Devolved Administration) with which equine owners registered details of equines that they owned or kept at the time of registration, is a Data Controller in respect of personal data relating to those owners.
Enforcement Authorities are Data Controllers in respect of personal data relating to equine owners that they obtain or create themselves, as necessary for the fulfilment of their official functions.
Details of the use of personal data by Defra (as a Data Controller) are given in the “What will the information be used for?” section.
Bramble Hub and Equine Register Ltd are Data Processors, as defined in
section 1(1) of the Data Protection Act 1998, in respect of the personal data
processed in relation to equine ownership in the United Kingdom. The
Scottish Agricultural Organisation Society Limited (SAOS) is a data processor
in respect of personal data processed in relation to equines registered with
PIOs in Scotland
Defra has contracted Bramble Hub to process the personal data relating to
equine owners as required for managing the equine passport system in the
United Kingdom. Bramble Hub has subcontracted Equine Register Ltd to
operate the United Kingdom Central Equine Database (CED), which will
collect information from PIOs in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and
SAOS in Scotland. The CED therefore provides a single dataset of equines
registered with PIOs in the whole of the United Kingdom.
The Scottish Government has contracted SAOS to operate an equine
database in respect of equines registered with PIOs in Scotland. SAOS will
upload information from that database to the United Kingdom CED.
What information is being collected?
The personal data collected is that required by EU Regulation 2015/262 for
the purpose of enabling equine owners to obtain an equine passport. Other,
non-personal, data will also be collected as part of the equine passport
application process, as required by Article 38(1) of EU Regulation 2015/262,
for example equine details such as the country of birth, microchip number,
date of birth, etc.
Unless specified otherwise, “personal data” and “non-personal data” are
referred to as “information” throughout this document.
Who is collecting the information?
As required by EU Regulation 2015/262, equine owners must register details
of their equines with a PIO so that the PIO can issue an equine passport.
Therefore, the PIO chosen by an equine owner collects the information from
that owner and retains it on its database. Also, as subcontractor to Defra’s
contractor Bramble Hub, Equine Register Ltd collects this information from
PIOs using the UK Central Equine Database (CED).
How is the information collected?
Equine owners submit the information to a PIO when they apply for an equine
passport or want to request a change to an existing passport. After entering
the information on their own database, PIOs are required to submit it directly
to CED. For historical passport records held by PIOs, PIOs send the
information to Equine Register Ltd who import it into CED on the PIOs’ behalf.
What are the consequences if incorrect information is entered into CED?
The main purpose of CED is to show whether an equine presented for
slaughter can safely enter the human food chain, based on information in the
equine passport. If CED incorrectly shows that an equine is “signed in” to the
food chain there could be serious detrimental effects on human health if that
equine is slaughtered for human consumption.
CED will automatically keep a record of the name of anyone who makes a
change to information held. Any deliberate amendment of information for
fraudulent purposes may result in prosecution.
What will the information be used for?
Defra will mainly use the information for the following purposes:
(1) to comply with and enforce the requirements of EU Regulation
(2) to fulfil its functions in relation to disease control, animal health and
(3) to carry out statistical analyses of non-personal information from
CED to inform Government policy development and for analyses
and planning purposes;
(4) to search the CED by microchip or UELN to verify equine(s);
(5) to enable Local Authorities, the Police Service and other
enforcement agencies to investigate alleged or actual breaches of
any laws and take prosecuting or other enforcement action as
(6) to enable Local Authorities, the Police Service and other
enforcement agencies to identify the owners of equines that have
strayed onto public roads, other public areas or other land so as to
take appropriate action, including reuniting owners with their
(7) to enable the Food Standards Agency (FSA) to check details
relating to equines that have been or are to be slaughtered to
ensure that any equines not fit for human consumption do not enter
the human food chain. If the FSA’s checks identify discrepancies,
the FSA will notify the relevant Local Authority either directly or via
the PIO with which the equine was registered. The FSA will also
enter certain information into CED, including the dates of slaughter
(8) to provide information to other Member States of the European
Union (MSs), as required. Articles 39 and 40 of EU Regulation
2015/262 requires MSs to cooperate in the use of their databases
that are equivalent to CED, including sending information updates
to other MSs that issued an original passport and allowing enquiries
from other MSs regarding microchip number, Unique Life Number
or passport number; and
(9) to allow the general public to search for an equine using its
microchip number for verification and fraud prevention purposes.
This will not reveal either the identity of or other personal data
relating to the equine owner.
In addition, the information may be used as follows:
(1) to provide Fire and Rescue Services with details of equines and their
owners where necessary to deal with incidents requiring their action;
(2) to enable computer systems to be tested to ensure that they work
effectively and efficiently and to develop new systems in order to
improve efficiency and the service that is provided to equine owners
and other persons. Any use of information for testing or developing
computerized systems will be conducted in a secure manner in
accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 to safeguard the privacy
of the information that equine owners have supplied; and
(3) to contact equine owners in connection with occasional customer
research aimed at improving the services provided;
If equine owners require details about the use of the information by Defra or
any of the other Data Controllers or organizations mentioned above, they
should contact them directly.
Disclosure of information, including personal data, under freedom of information laws
Information, including personal data and commercial information, may be
required to be released on request under the Environmental Information
Regulations 2004 or the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (including
equivalent laws in Scotland). However, the relevant Data Controller will
neither permit any unwarranted breach of confidentiality nor act in
contravention of its obligations under the Data Protection Act 1998.
Personal Information Charter
Defra’s Personal Information Charter, which gives details of rights in respect
of the handling of personal data, is on the Defra section of Gov.uk.