A horse and trap drive has taken place across the isle

A stop in Broadstairs Photo Ruth Brackstone Bailey

Dozens of horse and traps have been ridden across the isle for a Travelling community Jolly Boys Outing event.

Some of the buggies were of the sulky variety – a lightweight cart with two wheels and a seat for the driver, generally pulled by horses or dogs and used for harness races. The horses used to pull them are Standardbreds.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The procession has been driven through Broadstairs, Ramsgate and Margate.

One of those on the run is Mickey Lee, who last August led a drive in memory of his son Brandon Lee Wells. Schoolboy Brandon died after being hit by a car in St Peter’s Road in 2009. He was just nine-years-old. A white ‘ghost bike’ stands as a memorial to Brandon at the site.

Despite information that the run was for Great Ormond Street Hospital, Mr Lee said this was not the case and it was once again in Brandon’s memory with any funds raised going to road safety charity Brake. However, some on the drive said they were raising funds for GOSH.

Concerns were raised about the horses’ welfare in hot conditions, whether the drive should have gone on to Ramsgate beach and mess left on the pavement in Broadstairs.

Some residents said they also witnessed a car being forced up the kerb.

According to Thanet Coast Project local bylaws say horseriding on the beach should only before 9am and after 7pm along the seashore between 1 May and 30 September for public safety reasons

Some riding for children is allowed outside these times, when led by a responsible person on foot; but this bylaw excludes any racing or ‘breaking-in’ on the seashore.

Mr Lee said: “I wasn’t aware of any of my party going down onto the beach. Everyone was told before we set off to clear up after themselves and to be on best behaviour.”

Mr Lee added that the group had some 200 litres of water provisions.


  1. I’m astounded by this! I can think of better ways to raise money for Great Ormond Street. I was concerned for the welfare of these horses and ponies. Some were sweating and foaming at the mouth. They needed water on such a hot day. I saw one slip on a manhole which could have caused an injury. I also saw a very young boy riding barebacked on a small horse/pony! Did they have insurance or permission to do this on a bank holiday…..I expect not! It will be interesting to see how much they have raised in sponsorship?

      • Hiya Patrica the only problem with giving the horse water as their working or while their working is that it will give them colic x

    • What permission do you need to meet up with your own family and drive horses get a life it was a family remembering are beautiful son brandon lee who was killed 9 years ago in St Peters no more no less just because are ways are so different to yours don the make us bad people

  2. I was one of the girls in the drive me made sure our horses are safe and had water once cold down it if they have water while hot then they could get seriously sick I think today was a ready good day and no horses ingered

    • Did you clean up all the horse $hit that was left behind or did you decide it’s someone else’s problem as per usual?

      • Stop lieing show me the evidence there wasn’t no mess left just racist towares are people

        • Use spell check and don’t start using the racist card, it’s very boring. I asked a question so it’s up to you to supply the evidence of it being cleaned up. Whilst people are commenting the horses where scared and being ridden into traffic give me your email address and I’ll send you video of it.

    • Unlikely horses did not suffer, not better than the donkeys seen in tv adverts carrying bricks in extremely hot conditions. And for charity?? Rubbish, disgusting behaviour by ignorant uncaring people. Bet none were microchipped either, perhaps the police could in future advise that all horses taking part in such an event, with signage to state this fact, and heavy fines and confiscation of vehicles, if not shown to have a chip would be a good deterrent?? And a set time to get horse microchip or more fines??

  3. Disgusted with the way these horses were treated today!! Boiling hot and no water in sight!!! I witnessed the horses being made to ride thru red lights and I saw to poor horses almost come into contact with traffic… the animals looked petrified…im ashamed and disgusted!!!

  4. Lovely to see.I stopped the car unlike the clown in front who just had to go forward and up on the pavement.Big smiles and a thank you from all that passed.It was a pleasure to see the young boy riding the horse bare back.Too many wimpy do gooders and PC followers around. Don’t forget,wrap your children up in cotton wool and never let them experience any of life’s challenges.

    • Teaching children to CARE for animals plus being considerate to others(ie not riding on pavements) is far more important. Not showing off, racing horses on hot days, not hammering horses legs on concrete surfaces . Horses Can get colic when overheated and drinking immediately, BUT can be cooled down by water and NOT over exhausting them in first place. By the way l have owned horses myself over fifty years and still do so know what l am talking about.

    • Question: was boy riding bareback wearing a crash helmet? No, and you are using the event in memory of another young boy who died on the road? This is being responsible??

  5. Em… It’s was a horrible idea… For one there were people riding on the wrong side of the road… 2nd I saw one house get really upset and distressed because of the cars… 3rd some of the people were riding them so fast!!! And worst of all… There was a young boy riding bareback on the PATH! Where a young mother had to jump out of the way with her pram… Well done for being extremely irresponsible.. maybe next time get people involved who care about the safety of the horses and the public.

  6. I didn’t see the horses just the aftermath of rubbish left along the street and pavements on the Royal esplanade at Westbrook where all the vehicles were parked. If they want to come and do this event then fine, I’m sure it’s quite a sight to see but how is it OK for visitors to our Isle to think they can just leave rubbish strewn everywhere. Would it be OK to do the same outside their homes? This also happens on the beaches and obviously not just by visitors. It astounds me that people can create piles of rubbish after a day out then expect others to come along and clear it up. It’s disgusting, lazy and unfair.

  7. Perhaps a good idea would be to make it known that all horses taking part would be scanned for a microchip, if no chip then vehicles to be confiscated by police, plus fine issued, further fine if not chipped within a certain time. All horses by law have to be chipped plus a passport, No exceptions. ‘Travellers’ mistreat horses constantly by hammering along on concrete for far too long and far too fast, accidents happen all the time, mostly at the poor horses expense.

    • Linda you seem to know so much don’t tell me you been there done it all why don’t you mind your own business I was the last to pull away from royal esplanade to make sure there was no mess if you would like to post any photos you have regards your gripe I’ll glazing have a chat with the owner but I’m sure you have none ! I spoke to 3 of the people who live on royal esplanade and none of them had a bad thing to say as for us coming to thanet your be happy to know lots of us live here so put that in ya pipe and smoke it maybe you sould of made ya self known if you was that worried do people really get that bitter with old age

      • Cannot close my eyes and ‘mind my own business’when l see horses treated like machines, But yes at my age have seen many cases of abuse. And it needs to stop….

    • Lies all lies linda you probably never been anywere close to horse in your life not one of you can show any evidence what so ever your just jealous and bitter

      • No, not jealous but bitter yes, that people continue to abuse animals all over the world, we are a race of humans who could do better but don’t. Abuses occur in polo, horse racing, research facilities etc, etc by all classes of people, wealth does not equal kindness but often more abuse and a throw away mind set.

  8. the horses were fine i was there and no one was hurt all horses were allowed to drink and all the horses have microchips and the money we raise go straight to great ormand street so if u have a problem with us and the young boy riding bareback keep your opinions to yourself

  9. My name is bill Cook I am a Romany gypsy from Longfield Kent I was on this drives yesterday I have public liability insurance my horse is looked after and has salt replaced drinks all day I did not leave any rubbish and it was in memory of a little boy who’s life was robbed of he’s life 9 years ago god bless him

  10. It was far to hot a day to subject horses to carrying such weight. In fact it is wrong to use horses in tjis way full stop! How would you like to be made to drag such weight around. Shame on Great Ormond Street for accepting any donations!

    • There is some disagreement about whether it was for GOSH (which some on the drive said) or a memorial run which is what the organiser – whose son it was and who is from Thanet – has said

  11. PC Warriors calm down , i was on the drive myself, all the horses involved where extremely looked after . Had an hours rest after every few miles. And all washed down after the drive. No ones mention the motorbikes that were flying about under taking the horses and trying to spoke them . We were overwhelmed with the locals coming out and saying how lovely it was to see .

    • Question: was boy riding bareback wearing a crash helmet? No, and you are using the event in memory of another young boy who died on the road? This is being responsible??

      • Don’t use my son’s name in vain linda you know absolutely nothing about what went on you never see any abuse of horses your a lier so stop trying to stureach up an hornets nest you racist bitter nasty person . and cathy I told you this wasn’t anything to do with gosh what so ever people who have put on drives previous had made it a charity drive this wasn’t and no one gave or passed any money I wouldn’t take it although I did have people asking to put money in in told them maybe next year I’m getting really fed up with racist comments BAD repopting and people playing with words in a round about way people souls go down to margate main sands after the Jamaican community have been with there parts or the Bangladesh community bring lorryiadsof food down and leave mess everywere I drove down royal esplanade only 2 hours after everyone had gone and the only things I picked up was a pint glass 5 bito of paper which I can’t ever say was anything thing to do with us and that’s it everyone we spoke to along the drI’ve said it was nice to see , I bet the bikers on melt down didn’t have armed police from neckington turn up or local police come asking for people’s details yet a grough of travilers go out on horses and all hell brakes lose people need to lighten up problem with thanet iso if it’s not the normal day to day activities then it’s wrong you got the likes of linda who tell lies with her accusations of horses getting beat which is utter crap ! There’s not no one in the world going to stop us injoying a day out maybe people Sould make them self known when they see us out and not wait till there home to have cheap pop shots at what we do !

        • I have put that Mickey but someone from the drive also posted on here saying they were doing it for GOSH. It says you were doing it for Brandon.

  12. Years ago I worked on a farm in Gloucester where they trained and bread horses for harness racing all the horses there were very well cared for. I can’t speak for the welfare of the horses driven round thanet and I wouldnt of chosen to heavily work a horse in the high heat and humidity but this was a group of friends remembering a little boy, I don’t know the legality of driving horses in large numbers but horses and carts were around long before cars and are still classed as vehicles so not that different to the bikers runs. Horses poo but motorbikes make noise and air pollution and cause many more road accidents than horses

  13. Strange, never used the word beat in any post. Just wondered if boy on the drive day used a safety helmet. No response so maybe not?

Comments are closed.