The camping season is just kicking off for most campsites in the UK and with that, an influx of campers from all over the country will be visiting our New Forest campsites.
One of the exciting species inhabiting the forest surrounding our campsites is the New Forest Ponies. They make for great photographs, are lovely to watch whilst drinking your first cuppa of the day and there are around 5,000 of them roaming free on the land.
Whilst they’re entertaining, sometimes a little mischievous and spark friendly conversations amongst campers, our main aim is to keep the ponies safe - because really, we’re camping in their home. We ask all of our campers to abide by a few guidelines to ensure both the ponies and yourselves are kept out of harm’s way. As we go into the new season we ask you to take note of and share these guidelines with fellow campers.
New Forest Pony Safety Guidelines
New Forest Pony Information
The Forestry Commission owns the land in the New Forest with New Forest commoners having rights to the land. Commoners are required to brand each free roaming animal, whether this is with a ear tag or button.
The ponies, donkeys and cows around our campsites are all registered with the Verderers and looked after by their owners. The Verderers are a group of ten, five appointed and five elected to oversee that the New Forest Acts are enforced. They hold an open court at regular intervals throughout the year, giving members of the public a chance to present any issues concerning the forest.
Over 30 round-ups (or drifts) take place during the summer and autumn months. These involve herding the ponies together to allow for health checks, to put reflective collars on the ponies and to brand new foals. Owners may take this opportunity to remove any animals that need attention or to be taken off the forest for sale or health reasons. These aren’t public events but the dates are announced so that walkers can stay clear of the areas.
Got your New Forest camping trip booked with us? We’ve put together things you can do during your holiday in a handy guide.
We have 10 campsites in the New Forest, come along and join us; you may spot a pony or two!
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