Firmly in the saddle for 2012: Eurotunnel signs an agreement with a new European transporter (ETA)

In view of competitions to come and especially the World Equestrian games in Normandy in 2014, Eurotunnel is developing its horse transport service by joining forces with a new carrier.

Equine Travel Agency (ETA), which transports about 5 000 horses a year, is a professional international horse transport company which uses state of the art air conditioned vehicles and experienced staff. Eurotunnel is already working in partnership with British transport companies (Peden Bloodstock, Harbour Shipping and John Parker International Ltd) but ETA will be focusing on providing Eurotunnel services to customers on mainland Europe. ETA was as from 1st November authorised by Eurotunnel to transport horses on the shuttles. ETA holds the DEFRA licence, is accredited by the veterinary services and therefore can run a long distance service between Great Britain and any departure point in Europe: France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, the Czech Republic or other continental countries. This will allow many equine professionals and enthusiasts to cross under the Channel in ETA’s vehicules or in their own horse trucks provided they respect Eurotunnel’s strict safety norms. The Dover based Group also offers complementary services such as dealing with export papers and customs formalities.

Jo Willacy, Eurotunnel Commercial Director, declared:

“Eurotunnel is delighted to help sportsmen and women with their equine travel arrangements. We are receiving more and more requests from outside of the UK, so it is important to extend our relationships with reputable and reliable international transporters. The signing of a partnership agreement with ETA will enable us to better serve our customers, especially when stringent conditions have to be met for major sporting events”.

Graham Eggleton, Chief Executive of Equine Travel Agency, declared:

“Our teams will ensure horses travel in all tranquillity and, with the Shuttle, there will be no worry about sea- sickness. The grooms can remain in the vehicle to look after their animal. I am very honoured to be able to use the Shuttle whose ease of use and reliability are unique assets”.

Eurotunnel is thence gearing up ahead of the major international sporting events during which thousands of horses will arrive in England and France to partake in the dressage, jumping competitions, three days eventing competitions and the races.

Eurotunnel’s and the Equine Travel Agency’s top priority is to ensure that the horses are well looked after and comfortable. Embarkation will take place in a calm and stress free environment; the crossing will only take 35 minutes (as opposed to 90 minutes by ferry).

Groupe Eurotunnel (Euronext Paris: GET and London Stock Exchange: GETS) manages the infrastructure of the Channel Tunnel and operates accompanied truck shuttle and passenger shuttle (car and coach) services between Folkestone, UK and Calais, France. Eurotunnel holds the concession until 2086 to operate the Channel Tunnel, the fastest, most reliable, easiest and most environmentally friendly way to cross the Channel. In 17 years, nearly 265 million people have used the Channel Tunnel. This unique land crossing has become a vital link between the continent and the United Kingdom. Eurotunnel also runs a rail freight business through its subsidiary Europorte, which offers a wide range of integrated rail freight services.

We are the market leaders in the areas Belgium, Holland and Germany. We are also very well established in France, Spain, Portugal, Eastern Europe and Scandinavia. To have such a big European coverage, we work alongside all of the other principle EU transporters. We have around 10 partners, international horse transporters in Europe. Many of our clients are international competitors who want to travel quickly with no delay. We are based on the A20 between Dover and Folkestone, approx 7 miles from the tunnel entrance. On site we have 30 stables and operate a “horse hotel” service for people travelling to and from Europe with horses. We are the most recognised equine stopping place when crossing the channel. We also have a 24 hour contact number. We have a fleet of 5 trucks and 2 vans. Our business turnover is around £1m.