A local riding school with more than 700 members is facing closure after being given notice to quit its base.
Parents of children who attend the Beauvale Equestrian Centre at Beauvale Manor Farm in Moorgreen are said to be ‘distraught’ by the news.
The school was given two months’ notice, which expired last week, but their landlord, farm owner Malcolm Hodgkinson has given them until the weekend to leave.
The tenancy decision also includes a house where the owners of the riding school live.
Mr Hodgkinson says he took the decision because the house was no longer habitable due to damp problems.
But he also has safety concerns and told the Advertiser: “Kids and farming machinery don’t mix, and the school is on a working farm.
“It is a disaster waiting to happen in my view. I would rather be the nasty farmer than for someone to lose their life.”
Mr Hodgkinson said he had also received complaints about an increase in traffic on New Road, which he says is linked to visitors to the riding school.
He also said that if parents and residents wanted a riding school he would be willing to look at finding a better area of his land for one.
However the owner of the riding school, Andy Bettinson, says that another plot would require planning permission for a riding school and they could not guarantee they would be able to continue so turned down the offer.
Mr Bettinson, who has been a tenant of Mr Hodgkinson’s for ten years, claims that it was after complaints were made about damp in the house that they were given notice to leave.
He said: “We can’t just move 20 horses and a business in two months, and the parents and children are distraught.
“The kids will have to find another club or have to give up riding.”