Posted on January 4th, 2018


The auction of a limited 1915 edition of Black Beauty has raised vital funds for Redwings Horse Sanctuary, which could pay for enough hay to feed almost 100 rescued horses over Christmas.

Successful bidder Sue Day, currently living in Suffolk, was recently presented with the beautiful book by Redwings’ Chief Executive Lynn Cutress following the end of a silent auction that ran from July to November.

The rare hardback copy of this beloved novel, complete with colour illustrations by famed equestrian painter Lucy Kemp-Welch, was generously donated to Redwings by a supporter who asked that it be sold to help horses in need. Author Anna Sewell was born in 1820 in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, and wrote Black Beauty while living in Old Catton, north of Norwich. Sadly she died just a few months after the novel’s publication in 1877.

The book was placed on public display at the Museum of Norwich at the Bridewell over the summer as part of its own special exhibition celebrating the 140th anniversary of the publication of Black Beauty, which was marked on 24th November 2017.

Redwings also provided fun talks and activities at the Museum for families about horse welfare during the school summer holidays and even lent a life-sized model of a black horse for the exhibition.

Black Beauty fans were invited to submit their silent bids for the book at the Museum or log them with Redwings, with the coveted edition being awarded to the highest bidder at the end of the auction.

Sue said she was first read the book by her mother and she has held the characters of Black Beauty, Ginger and Merrylegs close to her heart ever since. A long-term horse owner, life member of the British Horse Society and member of the British Driving Society, Sue runs her own business providing horse drawn carriages for special occasions and operates horse-drawn boats on canals. She has recently set up a society in celebration of Anna Sewell’s life and passion for animal welfare, which aptly began on 24th November.

“I want this book to be for the society, to be shared with those who have a similar interest in Anna Sewell’s life,” she said.

Commenting on why she supported the auction, Sue added: “Redwings offers horses that are in suitable health the opportunity to live in homes outside of the Sanctuary on loan. Some might be rehomed as companions to other horses, while others lead fulfilling lives being ridden. Their Guardians also have the opportunity to continue their training in their new homes and, where appropriate, can go on to be driven. This I wholly approve of, and I believe Anna Sewell would have believed in this approach too.”

Redwings, whose headquarters are south of Norwich and has five visitor centres across the country, cares for over 1,500 horses, ponies, donkeys and mules every day nationwide. The money raised from the auction could pay for thorough health checks for 20 new arrivals at the Sanctuary.

Redwings’ Chief Executive Lynn Cutress said: “We’re incredibly grateful to Sue for her wonderful bid, which will help us continue to provide vital care for our rescued residents. With 2017 marking the 140th anniversary of Black Beauty, this stunning book was a most fitting donation and we’re so pleased it has found a new home where it will be treasured.

“I’d also like to thank everyone who placed a bid, and to the Museum of Norwich for not just supporting the auction but, through their exhibition, helping us throw a spotlight on the importance of animal welfare and preventing suffering to horses – a wonderful tribute to Anna Sewell’s lifelong passion in a very special year.”

Posted on January 4th, 2018

Suffolk’s Ryan De Sousa becomes NAF Shining Star

We are delighted to announce that Suffolk Junior Academy Member, 10-year-old Ryan De Sousa from Newmarket in Suffolk has become Novembers’ NAF Shining Star. With all British Showjumping Junior Academy Members eligible for nomination, it was Ryan’s work ethic and attitude towards his riding career that shone through.

Ryan was nominated by Suffolk Junior Academy Lead Coach, Mia Palles-Clark; “Ryan is only 10-years-old and has already achieved a lot in his Showjumping career. He works very hard, training every week as well as supporting other members of the academy in training and at competitions. Ryan is currently working hard to complete his NAF 5* awards spurred on by the fact that he wants to represent England in the Home Pony International next year. Like anyone in the sport he has ups and downs which he takes well and is learning to be mentally tough as well as developing strategies to cope with nerves. This is all starting to pay off as he recently achieved his first clear round in a 128cm class with his fantastic pony, Emily. Ryan has also been very successful in style and performance classes, he has the patience and good attitude to develop and produce ponies correctly and with sympathy. Ryan will be in the sport for a long time and if he continues as he has started he will be a successful and shining example for other riders too.”

Since joining British Showjumping in 2015 Ryan has become an active competitor of ‘Just for Schools’ and is hoping to qualify for Horse of the Year Show in 2018. Ryan commented; “I am really thrilled to get this award, I was so excited when I got the news! I have to say a big thank you to my Coach, Mia Palles-Clark. My ponies and I have improved so much since joining the academy.”

Melissa Newman, NAF Brand Manager, commented “Ryan is extremely deserving of the Shining Star award.  His dedication to the sport and hard work is clearly paying off. Ryan’s patience, great attitude and thirst to learn coupled with a wonderful approach to his ponies make him a fantastic candidate for the Shining Star accolade! Well done Ryan, we look forward to seeing you in the future!”

Posted on December 19th, 2017

A Royal welcome awaits local charity at their new home

Over a year’s worth of hard work, a huge fundraising effort and generosity beyond measure will be celebrated on Tuesday 19th December. Her Royal Highness, the Princess Royal, president of Riding for the Disabled will formally open the new home of the RDA’s Woodbridge and District Group.

Her Royal Highness will open the purpose-built premises, which include 40m x 20m indoor and outdoor arenas, community area, 25 acres of paddocks for grazing and a 1km all-weather track for carriage driving.

In a programme designed to showcase their new home and the valuable work of the Group, Her Royal Highness will meet volunteers, riders and horses. After a riding demonstration and awards ceremony, a formal unveiling of a plaque to mark Her Royal Highness’ visit will take place.

Suzanne Hammond Trustee for the Group said “We are absolutely delighted that our new home will be formally opened by Her Royal Highness, the Princess Royal. This will mean so much to our riders, carriage drivers and volunteers. Everyone has worked so hard over the last year to make our new home possible. We are so grateful and today is really the icing on the cake”.

The land and old farm buildings at the Groups’ new home ‘The Bays’, has been provided on a long-term lease by local landowners, the Chamberlain Family.

The Chamberlain family said, “This is a wonderful charity to be associated with and we are sure that the Group’s activities will benefit everyone involved”.

Suzanne Hammond said “We greatly appreciate the Chamberlain family allowing us the opportunity to develop our new home and build the indoor arena. Her Royal Highness, the Princess Royal opening our new premises today is a wonderful Christmas present to all involved. But our work doesn’t stop now, in the New Year we have more fund raising to do to raise money for the continued renovations and a hoist to help some of our riders mount more easily.”

The Group will start riding lessons and carriage driving from their new home in January.

Posted on December 12th, 2017

Likit Expands Brand Ambassador Scheme

Likit has announced its latest #teamlikit winners: they include Carrie Munro (Essex), Hayley Young (Northants), Harriet Barron (Herts) and Gracie Tyte (Suffolk).

The annual opportunity to become Likit Brand Ambassadors is open to horse and pony owners of all ages and abilities, with successful candidates each winning a year’s supply of Likit Products, their own blog on the company’s website, a £100 training bursary, and branded kit for themselves and their horse.

Entrants had to create a short video explaining why they and their horse or pony really love Likit Products and what they hope to achieve in the coming year. Two of the winners were selected by the Likit team, with a further selection of their favourite videos going through to public vote on social media.

Brand Manager Lindsay Gall said, “This is the fourth year we have run the competition and we have once again been hugely impressed with the quality of entries and the passion that riders have for the Likit brand. Our previous Brand Ambassadors have done a tremendous job and we look forward to following our new team during the coming year and beyond.

“Likit is a global brand and we are also supporting a number of professional riders from around the world under our new #proteamlikit scheme, which is made up of avid fans of the products and includes up-and-coming British dressage rider, Samantha Wuidart.”

Posted on December 12th, 2017

Charlotte’s ‘In Fashion’ at Liverpool International Horse Show

With the Liverpool International Horse Show just days away here we catch up with triple Olympic gold medallist Charlotte Dujardin about her first visit to the iconic Echo Arena.

What are your plans for competing at the Liverpool International Horse Show?
This year will be the first time I have competed at Liverpool International and I will be bringing the talented eight-year-old En Vogue. It is fantastic that the show has introduced dressage this year with the new Equitop Myoplast Inter 1 Freestyle (Dressage to Music) class, which takes place on the Friday evening performance, December 29.

Your mentor, trainer and great friend Carl Hester is also competing there, should we expect some friendly rivalry?
Of course, that goes without saying. We are massively supportive of each other but when battling it out in the arena, it is everyone for themselves. Carl will be bringing Hawtins Delicato who is another huge talent so there is everything to play for and we can guarantee some great dressage on our 2020 Olympic hopefuls.

Tell us about En Vogue?
“En Vogue is competing at Inter 1 level and is a real star for the future. He can be hot and it has been a challenging journey so far, but getting him out to major competitions is really helping him to grow in confidence and he is just getting better and better. I am really looking forward to experiencing this amazing show with him.”

En Vogue is an eight-year-old by the much-heralded Jazz and one that is a definite contender for British teams with Charlotte.

This year the pair won the Prix St George at Somerford Premier League and took second place in the Inter 1 at the British Dressage National Championships. Charlotte has ridden En Vogue at a number of demonstrations this year and the handsome dark bay is a real crowd-pleaser and has a growing fan base of his own with people commenting on just how impressive the gelding is.

Have you any secrets for success?
There are certainly no shortcuts and it really comes down to determination, hard work, some luck along the way and never giving up on your dreams when it comes to achieving your goals.

How achievable is it for ambitious young riders today?
Both Carl and I have achieved our success through hard work and are always striving to increase our knowledge. Neither of us were handed it on a plate but we have certainly made the most of the opportunities so yes I would encourage young riders to dream big and aim for the top and surround yourself with good trainers. You never stop learning.

What do you think your relationship with Valegro has done for the world of dressage?
Without doubt, dressage is on a whole new level and is recognised by so many more people outside the sport more than it ever has been. The term ‘dancing horses’ came to the fore after London 2012 and to a certain extent helped promote the sport and make it more understandable for the public.

If there is ever a spare moment, what do you enjoy doing to relax and recharge?
Everyone in the team is so busy but we try and plan in short breaks when we can to recharge the batteries. With my fiancée Dean I do try and make time for a quick getaway or a nice meal out when we can. The Malvern Hills are also a great way to spend a few hours walking with the dogs.

Tell us more about the show?
Hospitality at The Liverpool International Horse Show is second to none and makes a fantastic present for great friends and family. Whether on the purpose-built platform at the head of the arena or in one of the VIP boxes – you won’t be disappointed.

This year’s Liverpool International Horse Show will see a host of leading names in action from 29th to 31st December, at The Echo Arena on Liverpool’s iconic waterfront.

For further information and to book tickets visit


Posted on December 12th, 2017

Petplan Equine opens applications for new Ambassadors

Petplan Equine is looking for customers who are role models for responsible horse ownership. In return, the Ambassadors will receive branded clothing and kit as well as £500 towards competition entries and training costs as well as the opportunity to benefit from coaching in their equestrian discipline from top trainers.

Rachael Jayne Barker, current Petplan Equine Ambassador, commented, “Being a Petplan Equine Ambassador inspires you, it pushes you to want to do better, not only in riding and competing, but in the way you own and manage your horses.”

See Facebook – applications close on 2 January 2018.

Posted on December 7th, 2017


Charlotte Dujardin is now confirmed to compete at Liverpool International Horse Show on Friday evening 29th December with her own En Vogue!

She will be joining Carl Hester in a stellar line up in the Inter 1 Freestyle (7pm performance), and will be available to fans for a signing session before the show starts!

Said Charlotte: “It is just incredible that we have high calibre events such as the Liverpool International Horse Show to compete at in this country. I am really looking forward to riding in the magical atmosphere of the Echo Arena later this month.

“En Vogue is competing at Inter 1 level and is a real star for the future. He can be hot and it has been a challenging journey so far, but getting him out to major competitions is really helping him to grow in confidence and he is just getting better and better. I am really looking forward to experiencing this amazing show with him.”

Book now at or call 08448000400

Posted on November 28th, 2017

Judges for the 2018 Hickstead Showing season announced

It has been revealed who’ll be judging at next year’s Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting (20th-24th June) and the BHS Royal International Horse Show (24th-29th July 2018), although this list is subject to change.

The Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting  – Thursday 21st June 2018

Private Driving & Trade Turnouts – Miss Minta Winn

Friday 22nd June 2018

Cobs & Maxi Cob (Ride) – Miss Melissa Richardson
Cobs & Maxi Cob (Conf) & Riding Horses (Conf) – Mr Michael Maryan
Small Hunter (Ride & Conf) – Mr Robert Walker
Ridden Mountain & Moorland (Show) – Mrs Jennifer Williams
Ridden Mountain & Moorland (Conf) – Mrs Barbara Ashby-Jones
M & M Leading Rein & First Ridden (Show) – Mr David Bright
M & M Leading Rein & First Ridden (Conf) – Miss Vanessa De Quincey

Saturday 23rd June 2018

Hacks (Ride & Conf) – Mr Ian Smeeth
Working Hunters (Ride & Conf) – Mr Robert Walker

Sunday 24th June 2018

Ridden Hunters (Ride & Conf) – Miss Lesley Whitehall
Ladies Side Saddle Classic – Miss Lesley Whitehall
RoR Under Flat Rules (Ride) – TBC
RoR Under Flat Rules (Conf) – Mrs Jenny Candy
RoR Under NH Rules (Ride) – TBC
RoR Under NH Rules (Conf) – TBC
Coloured Horses (Ride & Conf) – Mr James Van Praagh


The BHS Royal International Horse Show – Tuesday 24th July 2018

Coloured Horses (ride) – Mrs Katie Jerram-Hunnable
Coloured Horses (conf) & Coloureds Supreme – Mrs Jo Jefferson
Coloured Ponies (show) – Mrs Sheila Dinsdale
Coloured Ponies (conf) & Coloureds Supreme – Miss Jo Hart

Wednesday 25th July 2018

Lead Rein, First Ridden & Lead Rein of SHT (conf) – Mr Philip Hilton
Lead Rein, First Ridden & Lead Rein of SHT (show) – Mrs Louise Windsor
Show Hunter Ponies (show) – Mrs Louise Gaunt
Show Hunter Ponies (conf) – Mr David Machin
Pure Bred Arabs (ride & conf) – Mrs Kathryn Oldroyd
Hackneys – TBC
P(UK) Young Riders M&M Ridden classes (conf) – Mrs Joanna Griffith
P(UK) Young Riders M&M Ridden classes (perf) – Mrs Rosemary King

Thursday 26th July 2018

Ladies Hunter (ride) & Amateur RH x 2 (ride) – Mrs Anna Levy
Ladies Hunter (conf) & Amateur RH (conf) – Miss Jeannetta La Four
Hunters – Lightweights (ride) – Mrs Louise Bell
Hunters – Middleweights (ride) – Mr Stuart Campbell
Hunters – Heavyweights (ride) – Mrs Marian Thomas
Hunters (conf) – Mr Angus McDonald
Shoeing Prize – TBC
BSPS Heritage M & M Open Classes (show) – Ms Tracey Milward
BSPS Heritage M & M Open Classes (conf) – Mrs Jane Somerset
BSPS Heritage M & M LR & FR (show) – TBC
BSPS Heritage M & M LR & FR (conf) – Miss Vickey Eggleston

Friday 27th July 2018

Amateur Hunter (ride & conf) – Miss Jo Bates
Amateur Hunter (ride & conf) – Mrs B Sturgis
Working Hunter (ride) – Mr Matthew Ainsworth
Working Hunter (conf) – Mrs Jane Hall
Riding Horses (ride) – Mr Kevin McGuiness
Riding Horses (conf) – Mr David Kellow
M & M WHP (jumping) – Mrs Jennie Loriston-Clarke
M & M WHP (conf) – Mrs Barbara Evans

Saturday 28th July 2018

Small Hunter (Ride) – Mr Richard Telford
Small Hunter (Conf) – Mrs Valerie Gingell
Hacks (ride) – Miss Katie Jones
Hacks (conf) – Mr Alan Mickleburgh
Intermediate Show Riding Types (show) & Intermediate Show Hunter (conf) – Mrs Sharron Kivlochan
Intermediate Show Riding Types (conf) & Intermediate Show Hunter (show) – Mrs Nicky Turner
Pretty Polly Ponies Heritage LR & FR (conf) – Mrs Lorraine Partridge
Pretty Polly Ponies Heritage LR & FR (show) – Mr Clive Johnston
Miniatures – Miss Julia Ryde-Rogers
Part Bred Arabs (ride) – Mrs Anna Levy
Part Bred Arabs (conf) – Mr David Puttock
Maxi Cobs (ride) – Mr Kevin McGuiness
Maxi Cobs (conf) – Miss Moggy Hennessy

Sunday 29th July 2018

Working Hunter Pony (jumping) – Ms Sarah Lears
Working Hunter Pony (conf) – Miss Vicky Smith
Show Ponies (show) – Miss Lucinda Haines
Show Ponies (conf) – Mrs Wendy Phipps
Nursery Stakes (conf) & Int W Hunter (jumping) – Mrs Sandra Bucknell
Nursery Stakes (jumping) & Int W Hunter (conf) – Mr David Bartram
Pretty Polly Ponies – SP, 2 x SHP (conf) + M & M (show) –
Mr Clive Johnston
Pretty Polly Ponies – SP, 2 x SHP (show) + M & M (conf) –
Mrs Lorraine Partridge
Cobs (ride) – Mr David Froggatt
Cobs (conf) – Mrs Lucy Killingbeck
Working Show Horses (ride) – Mr Jody Sole
Working Show Horses (conf) – Mrs Sophie Spear
Amateur Cobs x 2 (ride) – Mr Jody Sole
Amateur Cobs x 2 (conf) – Mr Alan Mickleburgh
Amateur Hacks (ride) & Amateur Maxi Cob (ride) – Miss Michele Underwood
Amateur Hacks (conf) & Amateur Maxi Cob (conf) – Miss Moggy Hennessy
Trade Driving Classes – Sophie Adkins
Grooms Prize – Mrs J Bunn & Mrs Helen Evans
Supreme Ridden Horse & Pony Championships – Mrs Nicky Coe plus 2 others TBC

Posted on November 28th, 2017

Allister Hood is the first recipient of the Roger Stack Award

Top show producer Allister Hood has been selected as the first recipient of the Roger Stack Award, given to the person who has produced the outstanding showing performance of the year at Hickstead.

Norfolk-based Hood was given the award after winning the British Horse Society Supreme Horse title at this year’s Longines Royal International Horse Show, with his riding horse Diamonds Are Forever.

Allister not only took the overall Championship but also had two other horses through to this year’s Supreme, with his cob champion Our Cashel Blue finishing in runner-up spot. In October, Allister and Diamonds Are Forever became one of a few select showing combinations to do the RIHS/HOYS supreme double in the same year. In addition, Allister has now won more Hickstead supreme championships than any other rider.

He was presented with the award at Hickstead’s annual Showtime Ball (Saturday 18 November), in front of 200 guests.

“There could be no finer recipient of the inaugural Roger Stack Award than Allister,” said Hickstead Director Lizzie Bunn, who presented Hood with the award on the night. “He has had an outstanding season, and he was a great friend of Roger, in whose honour this award has been created.”

Roger Stack was one of showing’s greatest advocates – a top class rider, producer, trainer and competitor, a former Chairman and President of the British Show Horse Association, and Hickstead’s Director of Showing for 15 years.

Last year’s Showtime Ball marked the last time many people from the showing fraternity saw Roger, who sadly died on Christmas Eve in 2016.

Allister commented: “I was so honoured to receive this award, and really felt quite emotional. Roger is greatly missed by us all and this trophy will take pride of place at Buttons Farm.”

The Showtime Ball gives owners, riders and producers from the showing world the chance to return to Hickstead for an end-of-season party. The Ball also raises funds for improving the showing facilities at the All England Jumping Course, and this year a raffle and fundraising auction raised more than £10,000.

The money will be put towards making further improvements to the new Roger Stack Arena, which was completed ahead of this year’s shows, plus adding extra roadways in the stable field.
Allister Hood winning the British Horse Society Supreme Horse Championship at the Longines Royal International Horse Show 2017 (Photo: Craig Payne)

Posted on November 14th, 2017

Showing Judges announced for Horse of the Year Show 2018

It has been five weeks since HOYS 2017 came to an end, and plans are already taking shape for HOYS 2018 which will be the Show’s 70th Anniversary, promising an exciting line up of displays as well as some surprises along the way! More information to be announced in the New Year.

“The World’s Most Famous Horse Show”, which hosts the most highly-regarded national showing Championships, will take place Wednesday 3rd– Sunday 7th October 2018 at the Genting Arena, NEC Birmingham.

A total of 1,600 horses and 1,500 riders compete each year at Birmingham’s NEC, where 29 prestigious showing titles are on offer. With over 60,000 visitors to the show each year there is tremendous support for the competitors and it is an honour to offer such a prestigious level of competition.

The list of judges is also available from the Competitor Zone of the HOYS website at