Following its announcement earlier in the year that all residential kennels will be externally audited, GBGB has launched a pilot of the new independent inspections. The pilot was originally due to take place in the Spring but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new inspections are being undertaken by independent auditors, NSF International, who have extensive experience of conducting animal welfare audits. Over the coming months, NSF will be carrying out a pilot with a select number of trainers in conjunction with their area Stipendiary Steward. Trainers chosen for this pilot have already been contacted by GBGB via letter. The pilot scheme will last for several weeks and a full roll-out of the inspections will begin in January 2021.

The inspections will be based on the criteria detailed in the PAS 251: 2017 Specification for Greyhound Trainers’ Residential Kennels which is available on the GBGB website and via the trainers’ portal. The pilot scheme aims to familiarise NSF with the workings of licenced kennels and to ensure trainers have a good understanding of what is required of them for these inspections.

Paul Illingworth, Senior Stipendiary Steward, said:

“With the events of the past few months we had to take the decision to postpone the start of our work with NSF but we are pleased to get this important work underway. These inspections will demonstrate our commitment to upholding the highest welfare standards across our sport. We are hugely thankful for trainers and their staff for their support as we introduce these changes.

“It is our hope that the pilot scheme will give both trainers and NSF the opportunity to fully familiarise themselves with the process and ensure we have everything in place to roll the new inspections out fully from next year. If any trainer has any questions about the new inspections or the PAS, please contact your Stipendiary Steward.”