Written answers

Tuesday, 21 June 2022

Department of Defence

Departmental Equipment

Photo of Alan KellyAlan Kelly (Tipperary, Labour)
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535. To ask the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of horses that joined the Defence Forces equitation school in 2021 and to date in 2022; the number of horses that left the equitation school during the same period; if additional funding has been secured for the purchase of additional horses for the equitation school for later in 2022.; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32214/22]

Photo of Simon CoveneySimon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
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The mission of the Army Equitation School is to promote the Irish Horse through participation in international competition at the highest level. The Army Equitation School has discharged this task with considerable distinction down through the years and, through its participation and numerous successes in equitation events at home and abroad, it has successfully promoted the qualities of the Irish Horse.

The Army Equitation School continues to source suitable Irish bred horses that meet the required standard as judged by the School's Horse Purchase Board. Horses are acquired through either purchase or lease agreement.

In 2021 five new horses were purchased and one new lease for a horse was completed by the School. The School have purchased one horse to date in 2022.

During the period from January 2021 to date, a total of five horses left the Equitation School.

The School’s budget allocation in 2022 for horse acquisitions is set at €350,000. I am satisfied that the current arrangements allow the School to maintain its competitiveness at national and international events.


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