Is £5 levy to be added to the sale of each Lammas Fair horse?

A REPORT prepared for a meeting of Moyle Council suggests that a £5 levy will be put on the sale of each horse at the Lammas Fair in Ballycastle.

Money has to be spent in relation to keeping horses over night and providing them with bedding and food and also for veterinary costs.

Discussions have been held by Moyle Council’s ‘Lammas Fair Working Group’ and the Council report looked at the area around Fairhill Street in Ballycastle where horse dealers gather during the Fair.

The report stated: ‘There will be no access for the public to the pens this year as this caused a lot of concern in terms of health and safety last year.

‘Instead the pens will be used for overnight accommodation and the sale area for daytime will on Fair Green where the public can view the horses and a run will be provided around the edge.

‘There will a charge of £5 levied on each horse being offered for sale. It is also hoped to attract some stalls which have an agricultural appeal to that area also.’

Last year there was huge controversy about horse trading at the Fair as Moyle Council initially voted to ban it because of concerns about spectator safety and animal welfare.

But then the Council allowed horse trading, but only at Fair Green.

Horse trading has been a big part of the Fair for hundreds of years and many spectators marvel at the animals and also the methods used by dealers to buy and sell the animals.

Elsewhere at the Fair, the report says, that in the lower Ann Street area outside the Quay Road Hall a line of small stalls/gazebos will be provided and arts and crafts businesses will be asked to take these up, particularly local producers.

The report further said the organisers hope to produce a map of Ballycastle showing where the different areas and activities at the Fair are and put it up around around the town and also print as leaflets for visitors.

And the popular St George’s Market will also be on tour once again at the Fair at Ballycastle seafront.