Police break up pony and trap racing on major roads

Following disruption on one of Essex’s major routes this weekend, police are asking the public to report any activity relating to pony and trap racing in the area.

There was significant disruption on the A127 on Sunday morning due to pony and trap racing on the Southend-bound carriageway.

West LPA commander, Chief Superintendent Stuart Hooper, said: “Pony and trap racing poses a significant risk to both those taking part and surrounding road users.

“In these instances, the safety of members of the public is always our main priority and we will continue to respond to any reports of activities that may increase the likelihood of collisions or endanger individuals on our roads.

“It is also our collective responsibility to ensure that COVID-19 regulations continue to be followed and we urge anyone planning social gatherings or non-essential journeys to please reconsider.”

After reports of a large group of vehicles, horse boxes and individuals on horseback travelling along the A127, officers responded to ensure public safety and to prevent any further disruption. The group were stopped before the Manorway, Corringham and officers engaged with those present.

The majority of individuals followed guidance and dispersed, but of those who remained, two vehicles were seized and one driver was issued with a warning under Section 59 of the Police Reform Act 2002. Three fixed penalty notices were issued for breaching COVID-19 regulations.

Cllr Rob Gledhill, Leader of Thurrock Council, said: “I would like to thank Essex Police for their swift action today to disperse the group and for stopping individuals travelling to The Manorway.

“We will continue to work together to tackle this problem. Not only is this a traffic issue but we are still in lockdown so shouldn’t be leaving our homes unless it is essential and fines were issued for COVID regulation breaches where most appropriate.”

If you have any information about any activity relating to pony and trap racing in the county, or any information or dash cam footage of the incident from this morning, please call 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Mick Ferris

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