Smithfield

Dublin, Ireland, 2004: Smithfield horse market is held on the first sunday of every month. At approximately 400 years old, it is one of the longest (and most controversial) horse fairs in the world…

The Smithfield area was given a facelift in the late 1990’s to accomodate the denizens of Ireland’s new found economic wealth. However an ancient by-law giving the traders the right to use the market, means the city council and police can do nothing to prevent it happening every month…

In the 1960’s bored inner city teenagers started frequenting the market, purchasing pony’s for a pittance and a laugh. Nothing has changed, a horse can still be sold to a kid and taken away and used and abused like a bicycle…

Urban cowboy’s or “pony kids” can be seen mostly around market time, riding pony’s bareback in their sports kit and trainers. The horses are taken back to the housing estate’s rather than the fields, many are abused and abandoned each year…

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