Horse Passports


All horses and ponies (and other equines) in the UK need to have a passport identifying the animal.  All owners or keepers of equines need to obtain a horse passport for each animal they own or keep.

Passports will last the lifetime of the animal and will include a Unique Equine Life Number.


Horse Passports

From the 1 October 2020 all horses and ponies (and other equines) in England must have had a microchip inserted and recorded in the passport, the PIO passport database and the Central Equine Database.

The purpose of this legislation is to prevent veterinary medication, such as painkillers, sedatives, wormers, etc., entering the human food chain via the consumption of horse meat.

A number of organisations have been authorised by DEFRA to issue horse passports, including the British Driving Society.  It is strongly recommended that owners of Breed Registered horses/ponies should apply to their own Breed Society for a passport.

The BDS can issue horse passports to both BDS members and non-members.  Duplicate BDS Passports can be applied for where required, please contact the office for details.

The BDS can also over stamp foreign passports to bring them up to date with current legislation, please contact the office for details.

The Passport must be returned to the BDS Office if the horse (or equine) dies or is destroyed so it can be ‘Invalidated’ and the databases updated.  Please enclose a SAE if you wish the passport to be returned.

You can obtain a passport application form the BDS office or you can download and print a form from this web site. We also have guidelines to help you fill in the form and speed up the processing.

Your passport is a legal document, please keep it safe.

You can print a BDS passport application form from this web site.

Guidelines for filling in passport applications

The diagram and description on the back of the passport application form must be completed and signed by a Veterinary Surgeon. 

You may send a photocopy of your veterinary record of vaccination showing the diagrams of your equine, together with the description as completed by your vet.  You do not need to send the original.

Please ensure that the passport, new applications or any updating forms are posted to the correct address.

Use a substantial envelope with a return address on the back when posting your passport.


British Driving Society

Hours of Operation

10:00am – 4:00pm


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Hoste House, Whiting St, Bury Saint Edmunds IP33 1NR

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