Designing an Equestrian Facility

This little stable yard was built in 2002 with a budget of around £18,000...

Peter and the crew work regularly with horses. Their building experience, coupled with in-depth equestrian knowledge, gives them a strong advantage when it comes to helping clients design and build equestrian facilities.

If you are looking to design and build an equestrian yard or manege (menage), please don't hesitate to ask us for help. We are more than happy to advise, and can arrange a site visit and survey to enable you to make informed decisions about the construction of your facility. Bear in mind that many construction companies offer this service, but we are experienced in working with horses - we have our own stables, we regularly ride and train horses, and design, build and maintain stables all the time. Our equestrian consulting team travel all over the country.

In the photos below, around 1000 tonnes of clay and soil were moved to allow the yard to sit into the bank.

Laying the concrete base for stables and muck heap...

The stables complete. Buildings were supplied to our design by Oakley Stables, with whom we worked closely. Sadly, the Oakleys have retired, and with them, their excellent business. There are numerous other manufacturers out there though, building similar facilities, and the competitive nature of the business keeps prices keen.

I always like to see stables designed with lots of room for expansion - you need room for all that tack - so a big tack room with running hot and cold water for cleaning tack is advisable. The track room should have regard for security - if you are going to leave saddles and bridles there, make sure you have it well alarmed, and there are strong locks on the doors - and that people cannot climb into it from elsewhere. Make sure the concrete in the stables slopes to the front (about 5mm per metre) and you have a wide area at the front for washing horses down, also draining the same way. Your yard drains should run into a sediment trap that stops mud getting into the drainage outlet. Minimum size for a stable is 12' x 12' - and I always plan to use rubber stable matting on top of the concrete. Stable walls should be lined - we usually use 6x2" treated timber boards - if a horse kicks them, they are easy enough to remove and replace, so your stables always look nice, as well as being safe.

Keep all wires and water pipes out of reach of horses - I run wiring right along the apex of the roof, and try to bury water pipes under the concrete so they dont freeze in winter. I like lots of light in the tack room - and lots of power points so you can plug in a radio, extension leads for clippers, various chargers, electric fence units, water heater, and so on - its surprising what you need, so make sure you have allowed a big enough power feed cable from your mains supply - usually in your house - the cable needs to be quite a lot bigger than you would think to allow for resistance and voltage drop along the length. Same goes for water pipes - the bigger the better - use 1" to get to the stables if you can, and step down to 18mm in the stables - so there is a big enough pipe to fill buckets quickly. Dont forget outside lighting for your stable block as well - good lighting in winter is essential - light the muck heap too, so you can see where you're going at night when skipping out!

Knowledge Base
Consulting Services for Equestrian Facilities

If you are considering building a manege or stables, and need assistance, we provide consulting services to ensure that your project is planned, specified, scheduled, costed and managed properly.

We work on a daily or hourly rate to help with:

  • preparation of plans and submission of planning applications
  • prepare specifications for manege construction
  • advise on suitability of materials
  • selection of surfaces 
  • supervise local contractors 

Contact us to see how we can help.

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