The United Kingdom Horse Shoers Union

The voice of the farrier.



Report of the FRC meeting on Thursday 6th November 2003 at 10.30 am at the General Dental Council, 37 Wimpole Street, London.

Present (public): Martin Humphrey

Present (council): Chairman was Brigadier Jepson in the absence of Miss Clayton

Item 1 Apologies for absence
2 Notification of any items to be raised under “Any Other Business”
3 Minutes of the meeting of Council 26 June 2003-11-06
4 Matters arising which are not Agenda items.

I arrived a little late about 10.50 during item 4.

A matter raised by James Todd: a DC case had been scheduled for December, it was felt that a vet should be on the DC however Harris was unavailable so it was proposed to draft in Jepson who was on the PIC but had been absent when the case was heard though he would have had the papers. The general feeling was that it was better not to do this and if there was a difficulty then appropriate professional advice could be sought. In the event the case was postponed to January when Harris was available anyway. WN said that a case had to be postponed recently and reconvened with a whole new DC because papers were made available which should not have been and the barrister objected.

5.(i) Colonel Bevan is coming on to the FRC to replace Jepson at the Feb/March Council Meeting.
(ii) David Gibson is coming off the Finance Committee, Ms Alderton is replacing him. (iii) NVQ quality assurance body – sits twice a year - Clayton is Chair, WN a member, Giles and Wynn from the WCF, a British Racing Training Board representative and a farrier Martin Deacon who is leaving. This body is the ultimate appeal body in the case of NVQ assessment. WN suggested Carl Bettison, J Todd said that a working farrier would be better and suggested Wayne Upton from Haywards Heath. Burton suggested Neil Madden, but WN is hoping to use him as an internal verifier, and Stuart Marshall. It was agreed to ask for volunteers in the Farriers Bulletin. Should UKHSU suggest someone.
(iv) Visitation panel needs a member who is an RSS or DipWCF qualified farrier to replace Tom Birch – Burton was given the position.

6.1 Major item is budget – FRC in balance, FTS in profit.
Schedule of charges for 2004 agreed.
Attendance allowance raised to £135/day for FRC and JFTC.

ATF application fees £800 but payable in stages with significant refunds at a later stage. NB All existing ATFs have now done the ATF course, after 10 years it is likely that they will have to have done an L11 course, a Health and Safety course and show evidence of CPD – will not have to retake the ATF certificate.

6.2 Registration Committee Minutes (Chairman Brig Roache)
(i) 1 farrier had his ATF status reviewed – deferred for further legal advice, status was subsequent retained.
(ii) overseas applications – the first admission to the Register has taken place under EEC Directive 99.42, the farrier having shown evidence of working in Italy.
(iii) ATF coaching course.
(iv) 3 L11 courses for ATFs planned for 2004
(v) ATF applications, 5 in July, 9 in October.
(v1) procedures for overseas applications and applications for prior learning – should be assessed for NVQ criteria, not by Diploma examination (to avoid duplication), continuous college training limited to 6 months.

6.3 Investigating Committee have had 2 meetings 15/7 2 old cases re-examined, one due to a complainant not happy with previous decision, one that had been referred back by the solicitors, both closed, 3 new cases closed. 4/10 1 case closed, 1 case deferred to January meeting.
Horse magazine in January is doing an article looking at all kinds of shoes – FRC have been asked to contribute.

6.4 JFTC – Cecil Swan absent. Apprentices working with other ATFs – JFTC recommend that it should normally be for no more than 1 month in 12.
Apprentice induction – forging certificate – all apprentices to one venue.
3 ATF courses planned for 2004 either at a college or at NAFBAE forge.
Natural balance shoeing – should it be in the DWCF syllabus? Gene Ovnicek is coming over in May – there is a WCF seminar on the 8/9th of May – examiners will discuss this issue in a seminar financed by the FRC.
WCF are increasing the number of examiners, to include AWCFs. Plain stamped shoes will not be required to be made in exams. Exams may have a multiple choice format.
Block release pattern – concern that 2 weeks at college is not long enough -
4 4 3 2 2 3 is changing to 4 3 3 3 3 2 for 2004/5.

7.1 Cove bid (Certificate of Vocational Excellence)– approved interim status for first year – do not yet have contract from LSC – have £300,000 in bills to pay by end of March 2004, the biggest expense being a new coke forge at Warwick which has not yet got planning permission. Described as a “Landmark for Farriery”.

7.2 Farriery Training Quality Enhancement Measures. Drawdown of money has been slow – may have surplus this year. LSC owe £330,000 to the FTS at present. Request from Army for money for Master and Apprentice shoeing competition - turned down. Haydn Price is proposing a DWCF crammer course – asked for money – turned down but agreed to extend the CPD grants of 50% plus 20p per mile which are currently available to ATFs to apprentices also, to be reviewed in 12 months time. There is a Nafbae welfare advice line apparently, also learning support for apprentices. Free weekend workshops. There are concerns about the quality of many ATF’s.

7.3 Field Officer Update – 14 offers made – difficulty is geography – distribution of officers and clients – may be a lot of travelling for some. 24/6 November 3 training days.

7.4 Defra – have held meetings, Nafbae have been along, there is another on 1/12 /3 about “where do we want the horse industry to be in 10 years time. Modern Apprentices can now be 25 when they start.

8.1 is there a clear distinction between the roles of regulation, training and examination? Agreed that there is – should the frc carry out a feasibility study to see how they can be separated – funding agreed. Terms of reference – consider, report, recommendations, strategy, timescale – steering group agreed with 4 individuals names not spoken

8.2 dates proposed for 2004 18/8 august “meeting magic” workshop to discuss registration matters (not cheap)

Any Other Business Terry Hargreaves had received a complaint from a farrier whose apprentice had left him and whose letter he had copies of which had intended to place before the meeting but his was not permitted in case of prejudicing possible future proceedings. There was some discussion about the ethics of apprentices changing masters. At present there is a 3 way legal agreement. If an apprentice leaves, what comeback does the master have? An apprentice can be prevented working elsewhere if there are welfare issues, otherwise there would be legal issues if the FTS stood in the way. A master can make a civil claim for breach of contract, or make a complaint against the other master of professional misconduct. Hargreaves did not press the farriers grievance with any conviction, it was plain that he was only raising the matter because he was obliged to do so, and professed himself satisfied with the outcome of the discussion such as it was.
Haydn Price is presenting a paper at the National Equine Forum 2004.
In South Africa “strasser” has been banned apparently.

I asked Brigadier Jepson for a copy of the papers referred to in the Agenda (white, cream, pink, lemon, salmon, blue, lemon, blue, green, grey, salmon, lilac) and he said he would raise it at the afternoon (closed) session. To date (23/11/2003) I have heard or received nothing.

Martin Humphrey 10.11.03