A BLACKWOOD riding instructor has been fined for running a school without a licence or insurance.

Kayleigh Laura Griffiths, 27, of Woodville Terrace, ran the Prancers Riding School in Mynyddislwyn.

She appeared at Newport Magistrates' Court on October 9, after three parents contacted Caerphilly Council’s trading standards team.

Griffiths pleaded guilty to four offences, including one breach of the Riding Establishment Act 1964 and two offences under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations Act 2008.

The fourth offence related to her not telling her customers that the school was unlicensed.

She had initially pleaded not guilty to the charges but changed her plea during the course of the trial.

Griffiths was ordered to pay £1,017.41 prosecution costs, £500 for the Riding Establishment Act and £450 for other offences.

The court also added £50 victim surcharge to the sentence.

Councillor Nigel George, cabinet member with responsibility for public protection, described the importance of identifying businesses operating outside the law.

He said: “When parents take their children to somewhere like a riding school, they quite rightly would expect the premises to be fully licensed and insured to cover all eventualities.

“I’m glad the parents in this case thought to contact our officers so that this particular issue could be looked into and taken forward as a prosecution.”

The three parents had taken their young children to Prancers Riding School since 2013 and said if they knew Griffiths was giving riding lessons illegally they would not have taken their children to the premises.

To report an issue to Caerphilly County Borough Council’s Trading Standards team, contact them on 01495 235 291 or visit www.caerphilly.gov.uk/tradingstandards

*Prancers Riding School was granted a full licence before the case went to court but was charged for offences falling within a three week period, Caerphilly County Borough Council confirmed.