Horse-Drawn Carriages Banned from Melbourne’s inner CBD

Posted on by PETA Australia

UPDATE: Victorian road safety legislation has now officially been changed. The new laws will prohibit horse-drawn carriages from all roads and paths within the Hoddle Grid.

The new laws are intended to take effect from the middle of June.

6 December 2021:

Huge news! After years of protests and pressure from Melbourne Against Horse-Drawn Carriages and hundreds of emails from PETA supporters, the Victorian state government has announced it will ban horse-drawn carriages in the heart of Melbourne city!

Melbourne Horse-Drawn Carriage©Melbourne Against Horse-Drawn Carriages

Once the new rules are brought in, carriages would not be allowed on public roads within the Hoddle Grid – an area bordered by Flinders Street, Spring Street, La Trobe Street and Spencer Street.

Roads Minister Ben Carroll told the Herald Sun:

“We’ve heard the community’s concerns about horse drawn carriages and this proposal will improve safety for everyone on some of our busiest streets.”

The decision comes after a horse collapsed and died on a Melbourne street in March this year.

In 2017, the Melbourne City Council announced that it would no longer issue permits to horse-drawn carriage operators, but operators were still able to drive their carriages through the city because they were classified as vehicles under state law. Finally this loophole will be closed.

Not only are horse-drawn carriages dangerous and archaic, they’re also a source of great suffering for horses. These animals are easily spooked, and a busy city environment full of trams, sirens, traffic, busy shops, and cyclists is no place for them.

When not working, the horses are regularly kept in inadequately sized yards in the inner city. Forced to sleep in vacant lots strewn with debris, under freeways and on train lines, the horses have minimal security. They also aren’t given appropriate shelter or adequate space to move about and rest.

Melbourne Horse Kept in Unsuitable Yard©Melbourne Against Horse-Drawn Carriages

Trade outside of the Hoddle Grid is still concerning, but this news is confirmation that the future is brighter for horses.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to send an email to the government via our action page.

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