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HGV horseboxes are at the top end of the scale among horse owners who want to transport multiple animals and plenty of gear. It turns out that there are also people who purchase used HGV horseboxes only to convert them for other purposes, such as creating a restaurant on wheels for a catering business. At any rate, it is illegal to drive an HGV horsebox on a standard Category B licence. Instead, operators need a Category C.


We will talk about licence categories further on in this guide. Before we get there, we want to make you aware of two things. First, getting caught driving an HGV horsebox without the required licence could lead to significant fines and potential imprisonment. This is not a risk you want to take even if you are an amateur horse owner transporting your animals on a recreational basis.

The second thing we want you to know is that obtaining your Category C licence will result in some extra benefits you might be able to put to work above and beyond just transporting horses. We will explain those benefits later on.

How Licence Categories Are Determined

Licence categories in both the UK and EU are determined primarily by what’s known as maximum authorised mass (MAM). In some circles, this measurement is also known as gross vehicle weight (GVW) or gross combination weight (GCW). It is important for you to know these terms as the owner of one or more HGV horseboxes. Owner’s manuals, vehicle stickers, and other documentation may use any combination of these terms to describe the same thing.

With that said, if your horsebox has an MAM of 7.5 tonnes, that number relates to the total amount of weight that can be carried safely by the vehicle. This includes the weight of the actual vehicle itself. So the vehicle, your horses, your passengers, and all of your gear cannot exceed 7.5 tonnes and still qualify as safe and legal.

The licence categories we deal with most commonly among horse owners are as follows:

The HGV Training Centre offers the classroom and hands-on training students need to pass the appropriate Category C licencing test. What’s more, our training can be completed relatively quickly. You won’t be studying and practicing for months on end prior to booking and taking the test. Most of our students complete their training in under a month.

Our Training Approach Works

We have been in the driver training business for decades. Over that time, we have developed a reputation as one of the best providers of both commercial and non-commercial driver training. Our reputation is a combination of our high-quality training, our individual commitment to students, and our exceptional customer service. As for our training approach, it has proven to work.

We have developed a methodology based on presenting students with small amounts of information in quick, short bursts. When you take one of our classes, you will not be sitting through a long and arduous exercise that takes weeks to complete. Rather, you will be completing smaller tasks on a more frequent basis. Think of it as eating a meal in small bites rather than attempting to swallow the entire thing all at once.

We have chosen this approach because it:

Make no mistake; the primary focus of our training is to prepare students to take and pass their tests. This is not without reason. The government utilises testing as a means of determining whether or not new drivers possess the knowledge and skills to be safe drivers. If you cannot pass the tests, you cannot get the licence you are after. It is just that simple.

Our goal is to make sure each and every student passes his or her tests on the first try. As such, our entire training approach is focused in that direction. Does it work? Absolutely. More than 90% of our students consistently pass their tests the first time. When you train with us, you will be prepared and confident when it’s time for you to be tested.

We Support Our Students

We assume you are looking for the best driver training company offering appropriate training for HGV horseboxes. We also assume you have very strict criteria as to what you consider ‘the best’. If our exceptionally high first-time pass rate is not enough to convince you to train with us, perhaps our commitment to individual student support will.

There are some training companies that treat students only as numbers passing through the classroom. That is not how we do business at the HGV Training Centre. Rather, we work with each student as an individual person with his or her own challenges. We support students from start to finish, in an effort to make sure each one succeeds at every step in the process. You will see that support on display by way of the following:

The issue of job placement comes into play in reference to those extra benefits we talked about earlier. Let’s say you obtain an HGV CAT C licence for the purposes of driving an HGV horsebox. Your licence does not limit you to horseboxes only. It allows you to operate any vehicle within that category. That means you could take that licence and use it to find a job as a professional lorry driver.

Another benefit is that obtaining a Category C licence also covers any vehicle included in the B, B+E, C1, and C1+E categories. This would significantly increase the number of vehicles you are eligible to drive either professionally or non-professionally. The only additional requirement for professional driving would be the CPC training required every five years.

HGV horseboxes do require a higher category licence than your car. But obtaining one is well worth it on many levels. If you are a horse owner looking to purchase or operate one of these larger horseboxes, we invite you to contact us to learn more about training programmes. We want to be your partner in obtaining your Category C licence.

Learn more about Driving HGV Horseboxes

If you would like to learn more about our courses for equestrian transportation please choose from the list of related articles below:



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