LETTER: Council needs to think again about donkey operators

Regarding your article ‘Criminal checks set for donkey operators?’in the Wednesday 18th February issue of the Mablethorpe Leader.

The subject of criminal checks was addressed at the General Licensing Committee meeting held on the 16th November 2011. At that time it was thought that donkey operators did not typically pose a potential risk to children because the childrens’ guardians were usually in close proximity.

Also, this check could not be enforced as the list of required professions did not include beach donkey operators or their staff. It would seem very good to bring East Lindsey licensing authority into line with other coastal resorts such as Blackpool.

Regarding the formal code of conduct mentioned. The word ‘formal’ means - conforming to accepted rules and customs.

The accepted rules and customs for beach donkeys are set out in The Riding Establishment Act,1964 & 1970. (The Council supplies a copy of these rules in their ‘Advice to Applicants on Licence Conditions’ booklet given to all applicants for a licence)

There is also ‘The Donkey Sanctuary Code of Practice for working donkeys’. Then there are the additional conditions laid out by the council. These conditions were changed at the licensing meeting referred to above.

Didn’t make any difference changing them, in fact they became more complicated and now donkeys can be on the beach for 9 hours instead of 8 hours a day.

Wouldn’t it be simpler to make sure that all the council staff who deal with the subject of beach donkeys are fully trained to know which end of a donkey is which? Not as sarcastic as it sounds.

Not many people need to know about donkeys even when they have power to licence or not to licence.....

Christine Bates

By email