Exclusive: Donkey rides withdrawn from gala in bizarre licensing row

Donkeys which had to be withdrawn from Beighton Gala in a row over licensing.
Donkeys which had to be withdrawn from Beighton Gala in a row over licensing.
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Donkey rides had to be withdrawn from a popular Sheffield gala at the last minute after a bizarre row over licensing.

Beighton Gala organisers were told by Sheffield Council just two days before the event on Saturday that the animal provider needed a little known ‘riding school licence’ to make sure children wore helmets and the welfare of animals was prioritised.

But organisers of the community event said they have had donkeys at their gala for ten years without any problems and youngsters were left disappointed.

The provider, who has worked at Sheffield events for years, also already had public liability insurance and a beach licence and had never heard of the additional paperwork.

Sheffield Council insisted the licence was required by law and officers had got in touch as it was the first year they knew there would be donkeys at the gala.

See tomorrow’s Star for the full story.