A NORTH Yorkshire horsebox manufacturer has been enlisted by the official equestrian logistics company for the London Olympics to improve air travel for horses.

Global horse transport specialists Peden Bloodstock turned to Northallerton company JSW to help them manufacture a new lightweight mobile ramp.

The ramp was designed for Peden by professional flying groom Richard Picken, to ensure precious equine passengers are safely loaded in and out of aircraft.

Bosses at Peden, which was the official equestrian transport and logistics company for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, said they were well aware of the experience and expertise within the JSW team and that the firm was an obvious choice in assisting them with the ramp’s build.

Fiona McCormack, veterinary adviser at Peden Bloodstock, said: “Many airports that we travel to with the horses were not initially designed with the needs of horses in mind.

“In order to ensure the safe and efficient loading and unloading of these precious athletes the optimum solution was to have the ability to take our specialist equipment with us wherever we are undertaking airport operations in the world.

“The FEI show schedule is becoming increasingly international and horses have never had so many air miles. We are thrilled with the ramp, which meets all our operational needs.”

The order was not the first time JSW has been asked to design something custom-built. The firm has been commissioned to build a number of unique projects over the years including a wheelchair lift and ramp for a horsebox.

Alan Watkinson, managing director at JSW said: “I think our reputation as a first-class coach builder and our years of engineering expertise means we can offer something out of the ordinary. In fact we relish the challenge.”

Mr Watkinson added that JSW’s forward order book for its range of custom-built horseboxes was “very healthy” thanks to its national and international reputation.

He added: “We are continuing to attract interest from both here in the UK and from overseas. Our ability to bespoke design to the client’s needs is something not many other horsebox manufacturers can do.”

JSW Horseboxes, registered as JSW Coachbuilders Ltd, was founded in 1961 and is a third-generation family-owned business.

The business works alongside its sister company JSW Trailers, which is one of the North’s largest trailer distributors.