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WEG 2014.

Charlotte and Valegro lead the charge
to Rio 2016

It was a superb day for Great Britain in the dressage arena as Britain's Charlotte Dujardin, Michael Eilberg, Carl Hester and Gareth Hughes produced the goods out at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy to win the silver medal and also achieve the all-important qualification for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

After Gareth Hughes and Carl Hester's performances yesterday, which left GBR in the bronze medal position overnight, the pressure was on for Michael Eilberg and Charlotte Dujardin to deliver on the spectacular D'Ornano stage. Entering the arena for his world championship debut, Michael produced a vital test for the team, marred only by a couple of expensive mistakes aboard a slightly unsettled Half Moon Delphi (owned by Jon and Julie Deverill) to post 71.886%, which sees him through to tomorrow's Grand Prix Special.

Commenting after his test, Michael said; "I'm a bit disappointed really today with the test that I had. Obviously quite a few mistakes crept in; we've had some really good recent form, so the test today was a little bit below par. I'm a bit gutted because I wanted to get a good score for the team but that's the way it goes. She warmed up really well – that can be a negative because she felt too good! Even round the outside of the arena she felt really good but on the first diagonal she was a bit looky at the camera and it made her hide just a bit. The piaffe came off well today I thought and I collected a few marks there as the test went on."

The second half of today's competition saw Olympic and European champion Charlotte Dujardin take to the floor. With Roly Luard and Carl Hester's Valegro the familiar duo wowed the judges to take the top spot. Their test, which included some impressive piaffe and pirouettes, posted a stunning 85.271% to stand nearly four percent ahead of their nearest rivals, Germany's Isabell Werth and Bella Rose. The test included ten tens; four from the judge at 'C', Stephen Clarke.

Commenting after her world class performance Charlotte said; "I had such fun. I went out there to do my very best and wanted to try to get us [the team] into a medal position. He did his best and I'm so lucky, as he has just felt fantastic all week. He did try to stop on the centre line but apart from that I was really, really happy. To go out there and get the welcome I got was fantastic. It's such a great feeling to have that many people behind you."

Germany was the clear victors with 241.7 with Britain some ten marks adrift on 231.343 and the Netherlands in bronze on 227.4. A buoyant American team surprised a few to finish fourth on 222.714 while Spanish performances full of flair earned them a fifth place on 221.8.

Will Connell, Chef de Mission for GBR out at the WEG summed up today's performance; "As a team they only have two occasions to qualify for the Rio Olympics. This is absolutely what we wanted and means that they have a two year run in to the Olympics, during which time they can bring on young horses and don't have to worry about qualification. What Charlotte did today was truly outstanding, and along with her team mates, they have made the paving stones for the road to Rio."

Carl commented on the result; "As a team we're really delighted; no one feels left out, we're so lucky to have Charlotte who can take the pressure off to get the scores and win medals."

Charlotte, Carl and Michael go forward to compete in tomorrow's Grand Prix Special while Gareth finished outside the top 30 sadly.

Results:
Team Grand Prix Final Result:

GOLD - Germany 241.700: Desperados FRH (Kristina Sprehe) 78.814, D'Agostino (Fabienne Lutkemeier) 73.586, Bella Rose (Isabell Werth) 81.529, Damon Hill NRW (Helen Langehanenberg) 81.357.

SILVER - Great Britain 231.343: Nip Tuck (Carl Hester) 74.196, DV Stenkjers Nadonna (Gareth Hughes) 69.714, Half Moon Delphi (Michael Eilberg) 71.886, Valegro (Charlotte Dujardin) 85.271.

BRONZE: Netherlands 227.400: Glock's Johnson TN (Hans Peter Minderhoud) 74.357, Arlando NH N.O.P. (Diederick van Silfhout) 73.414, Glock's Voice (Edward Gal) 72.414, Jerich Parzival (Adelinde Cornelissen) 79.629.

Individual Qualifier Result: 1, Valegro (Charlotte Dujardin) GBR 85.271; 2, Bella Rose (Isabell Werth) GER 81.529; 3, Damon Hill NRW (Helen Langehanenberg) GER 81.357; 4, Jerich Parzival (Adelinde Cornelissen) NED 76.629; 5, Desperados FRH (Kristina Sprehe) GER 78.814; 6, Augustin (Victoria Max-Theurer) AUT 77.114; 7, Don Auriello (Tinne Vilhelmson Silfven) 76.186; 8, Legolas (Steffen Peters) USA 75.843; 9, Painted Black (Morgan Barbancon) ESP 75.143; 10, Verdades (Laura Graves) USA 74.871.

Full results and startlists at www.normandy2014.com

Listen to an interview with Charlotte here

Horseytalk.net EXCLUSIVE

RIDER RIGHTS

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Temporary. What does it mean?

Temporary. What does it mean?Different inspectors have different meanings
For Chailey, it was 20-years.
For Chobham, it was six-months.
For Odiham, it was five-years x twice ......... read more

Cause of schoolgirl's horse riding death 'will never be fully known'

Cause of schoolgirl's horse riding death 'will never be fully known' Ethna and Edmund Wiley

Hannah Jessica Wiley, 13, from Artigarvan, died after her pony fell on her at Eglinton Equestrian Centre, County Londonderry, in August 2012.A coroner at the inquest into the death of a County Tyrone schoolgirl who died at a show jumping event has said what happened will never be fully known.

The coroner said a horrific combination of circumstances led to her death.

Her parents said that the inquest had not provided an "accurate account" of their daughter's death.

Hannah Wiley died after competing in a show jumping event The coroner told the inquest that it appeared that Ms Wiley was riding her horse without any problems towards a fence when a pole became trapped between the pony's legs.

Cause of schoolgirl's horse riding death 'will never be fully known' The pole caused the animal to fall on top of her.

He said it was not the function of the inquest to establish liability, but that the horse riding organisation was well-run and the equipment used had been in operation for years.

Speaking outside the courtroom in Londonderry, her parents, Ethna and Edmund Wiley, said their daughter was an "intelligent girl" and "well loved".

Hannah Wiley died after competing
in a show jumping event >>

"We were hoping to get an accurate account of what happened to our daughter. She deserved that," said Mrs Wiley, who read from a statement.

She added that they also hoped people would "learn from these mistakes, so that no other family has to go through the heartache we've suffered".

Says Steve YandallThis sign is illegal

Equestrians are entitled to use this route - legally.
There are thousands of other illegal signs all over the country banning equestrians.

THEY MUST BE REMOVED

Horse has legs cut in attack

Police in the Scottish Borders are appealing for information after a horse was attacked in Hawick.

The incident happened in a field near the Troweknowes farm.

The horse suffered two large cuts to its legs, which required veterinary treatment.

Officers are conducting local inquiries to trace those responsible. Insp Carol Wood said: "This is being treated as a deliberate act of cruelty."

She added: "Anyone who remembers seeing any suspicious activity around the Troweknowes farm area of Hawick between Monday and Tuesday is asked to contact police immediately.

"Given the fairly remote location of the field, those responsible most likely travelled by vehicle and we would also urge anyone with information that can help us progress this line of inquiry to get in touch."

The BHS and Maureen Comber

How the BHS treats somebody who has been a loyal, dedicated and hard-working member for over 50 years.

DAY 55

It is now 55 days since the BHS shamefully dismissed Maureen Comber after more than 50-years of dedicated and hard-working service.

Maureen ComberStill no regret.

Still no sympathy.

Still no apology.

What is more they have still not paid her back the outstanding money they owe her.

How long can the BHS continue to behave in this disgraceful manner?

Other hard-working BHS members and volunteers beware. This is obviously the way you are going to be treated one day.

"We're backing Maureen"

Click here to read in full the shocking way
Maureen Comber was treated by the BHS

Apprentice Jockeys (1957)

Steve McCarronSays Steve McCarron

What is the point of the OPEN SPACES SOCIETY if it does not act to preserve open spaces ..............
read more

Sophie looking forward to the Individual

Sophie looking forward to the Individual

Sophie Wells, reigning Grade IV World Champion in the individual and freestyle, got the para action underway for Britain at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.Riding her own Valerius, she was third in and 'Reece' certainly looked to enjoy himself in the early morning sunshine. The Flemmingh sired liver chestnut attacked his test under Sophie's guidance and was on a mission to please. There were no mistakes but Sophie was clearly aiming for a safe clear round to leave some more in the tank for her next two tests. A score of 74.548% gave her the lead and a huge boost to Britain's team hopes. Her rivals Frank Hosmar (NED) and Michele George (BEL) gave her a close run but their scores of 73.167% and 73.643% just weren't enough to topple the Nottinghamshire rider.

Sophie commented; "I'm pleased. It's his biggest competition so far and we've been working hard at home on the different parts of the test. He's shown improvement and we can now build on that for the rest of the competition. He's capable of a good high score with his paces but it's getting it right all on the one day that's the challenge. He missed a few competitions in the build-up for one reason and another but he's in a much better place to be able to produce those bigger scores. He listens and concentrates and that's all I can ask of him; without the submission you don't have much to go on.

"I know him so well as I've produced him but you can't control what the other riders or judges are doing. You come in with no expectations, it's the first time he's competed against Michele George (BEL) on her top horse so you go in and don't really know where to place yourself. On the first day you just try and get in the swing of it and build from there."

It was then on to the Grade II with Natasha Baker with her mum and Christian Landolt's Cabral (pictured) in action for Britain and they had the enviable position of last to go. It was extra special for the duo today as it's their first World Championships in the team so trotting up the centre line was a poignant moment. Dutch newcomer Rixt van der Horst riding Uniek was the score to beat on 72.618% and throughout the test it was neck and neck on the scoreboard so the supporters had to wait until the bitter end for the collective marks to confirm Natasha's win.

A delighted Natasha said; "He (Cabral) warmed up really well but I probably did too much so I knew I'd really have to work in there. But he just found energy from nowhere as he usually does! It's our fourth championships together so I know just what to do when he's like that. He was totally with me and listening; just a good boy."

The final class of the day, and the team tests, was the Grade Ib with Sophie Christiansen and her own Janeiro 6. Sophie could write her place in the history books in Caen if she can emulate what Lee Pearson and Deb Criddle have done before and take the hat-trick of World Championship golds to accompany their Paralympic and European titles.

Drawn early, they scored 74.261% which gave them a clear lead. There was a degree of uneasiness at the start when an unwanted visitor followed them up the centre line but 'Rio' was quickly into his stride and scoring well. But this is a competitive grade and danger was just round the corner in the shape of Singapore's Laurentia Yen-Yi Tan and Ruben James 2 who've been in great form.

Their 74.522% was enough to edge Sophie off the top to second, a position she's not been in since London 2012. But the tense competition then developed further when Italy's Sara Morganti, double bronze medallist at last year's European Championships, showed her class and finished top of the lot with 75.783% to win the class. Sophie's score is still a great one for the team and she'll be out with a vengeance on Thursday in the individual test.

"It wasn't easy in there today," explained Sophie. "While I was walking round before the start a fly started following us and it followed us right up the centre line! He tried to shake it off; these things happen! I like to watch my test on video before commenting but I'll say he felt like he went up a gear in there. He was relaxed and rhythmical but maybe lacked the consistency for a better score. But I'm happy that way, it gives me something to work on for Thursday which helps me to focus.

"I haven't been beaten since London 2012 so it was always going to happen one day. It just drives me to do better on in the Individual on Thursday."

Says Naomi Smith

Says Naomi SmithIt is all too possible to round a corner on horseback and come upon a group of cattle with no prior warning -this WILL result in a horse being badly spooked at best, bolting at worst -it is only a matter of time ........... read more

BEF Director to run for FEI Presidency.

BEF Director to run for FEI Presidency

The International Equestrian Federation's (FEI) First Vice-President, John McEwen MBE, is to run for presidency of the FEI when the position comes up in December 2014.

Currently the FEI's Veterinary Committee Chairman, a role he has held for 8 years, John has supported current incumbent HRH Princess Haya of Jordan and the FEI as First Vice-President since his election at the General Assembly in Taiwan in 2000. During this time he has also served as the British Equestrian Federation's (BEF) World Class Performance Programme's Director for Equine Sports Science and Medicine.

The presidential race will be strongly contested following Princess Haya's decision not to run for a third term. However, having been at the sharp end of the FEI's work over a time of expansion - throughout the period of its "clean sport" campaign and over a period of unsurpassed sponsorship acquisition - John is well versed in both sport and commercial decisions of the organisation.

Known for his diplomacy, his integrity, modesty and strong sense of fair play John is well very well connected within the sport. He has chaired the FEI's Bureau and its General Assembly in Princess Haya's absence.

John commented:
"I have been delighted to play my part in support of the FEI and of our

current President, HRH Princess Haya. I have no illusions about the challenges for this election and the work that needs to be undertaken in the future. I run because I know I have the confidence and support of my own Federation and because I am committed to the direction our current president has forged. There is clearly more work to do but we have good people in place and a sound executive team led well by its Secretary General, Ingmar De Vos. If elected, I will seek to run a steady course and a period of further evolution."

BEF's President and Chairman, Keith Taylor, added:
"We were geared to support HRH Princess Haya in her campaign to run for another four years. Her withdrawal from the race a couple of weeks before nominations close has caused us to move quickly. But, we took no time in citing John McEwen for our nomination. He is hugely experienced and electable. He knows the FEI inside out and he knows what needs to be done to build on Princess Haya's outstanding legacy. He is very well respected throughout the international community as a man of integrity. We support him fully. John McEwen will go forward to the election at the FEI General Assembly (Baku) on 14 December with a very strong recommendation from the British Equestrian Federation."

Horseytalk.net Interview

Nadine Tull

Nadine TullNadine Tull was a wonderful teacher. She loved her students and she loved horses.

Ms. Tull first met a team of Gentle Carousel Miniature Therapy Horses at a program in Ocala, Florida seven years ago and dreamed of someday bringing the tiny horses to her school.

Two years ago Ms. Tull started writing and calling Gentle Carousel and talked to the volunteers about her dream. ...... read more

EquestrianCupid.com - the best horse-lover dating site!
EquestrianCupid.com - the best horse-lover dating site!

GRUBS Sponsor Winter Arena Eventing Series at Northcote Stud Equestrian Centre

GRUBS Sponsor Winter Arena Eventing Series at Northcote Stud Equestrian Centre

Neoprene performance footwear specialists, GRUBS will be continuing to sponsor the Winter Arena Eventing Series at Northcote Stud Equestrian Centre in Lancashire.

The series is aimed at 'grass root' level eventing with junior and senior classes of 80cm, 90cm and 1m taking place.

Competitors will jump a course of 16-20 fences set up in the large outdoor arena. The first part of the course will be show jumps with the latter section being a mix of rustic style jumps and solid cross-country style fences.

There will also be an undisclosed optimum time and riders will incur time penalties for every 10 seconds faster or 5 seconds slower.

Prize money will be up for grabs for the top three placings in each section and the winner will also receive a pair of GRUBS boots as part of their prize.

Held each month over the winter period, the series will conclude with a final event where all riders who have clear rounds throughout the series can qualify to compete.

Said David Foster of Grub's: "We are delighted to continue to support a local event that encourages riders at grass root level to hopefully move up into the world of affiliated eventing. This year sees some exciting new developments with a series final to qualify for."

GRUBS Arena Eventing Dates:

Sunday 19th October 2014

Sunday 16th November 2014

Saturday 27th December 2014

Sunday 18th January 2015

Sunday 22nd February 2015

Sunday 28th March 2015

For more information or to enter visit www.northcotestud.co.uk or contact Northcote Stud Equestrian Centre on 01254 245116.

Says Sally Edwards and Jo WareFrensham Common, rrey

Official. The National Trust does not own or have any other interest on the common land apart from the burial mounds .............. read more

Come and support our IJF team

Join us racing at Cheltenham on 7th Sept for FREE... when the pounding of hooves will be replaced by the pounding of trainers!

Come and support our IJF team who will be running their socks off in the Cheltenham half marathon alongside teams from Jackdaws Castle, Philip Hobbs, Charlie Longsdon and other athletic stables!

Come and support our IJF teamThe single lap course along Cheltenham's tree lined avenues also includes a lap of the racecourse itself.

Race starts at 9.00am at Pittville Park.

Please show your support for our runners below and we look forward to seeing you there to join in the fun.

John Francome MBE. President

Come and support our IJF team

"The man at the council offices in the Isle of Wight said that if they stopped adopting/resurfacing bridle paths, the council would need to close down that department" - Tony Barnett

Horseytalk.net EXCLUSIVE

RIDER RIGHTS

click here to read more

Says Sandra Smith

Says Sandra SmithThe speed required to ensure that a gate closes is greater than the velocity required to amputate a finger, crush a child or the head of a dog, trap a push or wheelchair, or – literally - tear a hole in the side of a horse ......... read more

Council backs riders fearing d-i-y bridleway pothole repair job 'could harm horses'

Council backs riders fearing d-i-y bridleway pothole repair job 'could harm horses'

A £5,000 do-it-yourself pothole repair job funded by residents must be undone amid fears the new road surface could harm horses' feet.

People in Pinfold Lane, Stockport, raised the money themselves after becoming frustrated at the state of the lane.

But horse riders complained the new limestone surface could injure their animals.

Stockport Council said all groups were now working towards a compromise.

The road is classed as a bridleway and is used by horse riders and pedestrians, as well as cars.

Councillor Martin Candler, the council's executive member for communities and sustainability, said the residents should have approached the council before paying for the work.

"The material used was limestone and a few months after the work was completed, equestrian users complained about the non-suitability of the material and asked for its removal," he said.

"We have informed the residents of the need to replace the material with something suitable.

"However, the council is committed to working with the primary road users and the local residents to seek a compromise."

Debi Hall, chairman of Stockport East Area Bridleways Association, said: "The surface is limestone, which is totally inappropriate for horses.

"Even if a roller has been used, once people start driving on it, it rips it up and could hurt them."

However, residents say they have been left confused by the situation, and fear they may have to pay towards the cost of removing the surface.

Peter Griffiths, 50, who owns a property in Pinfold Lane, said: "We thought we were within our rights to do the work, and the material is the same stuff used in most road surfaces."

A council spokesman was not able to confirm who would ultimately be responsible for paying for the road surface to be removed.

Says Steve YandallSays Steve Yandall

Grazing is always used as an excuse for fencing And fencing creates problems for riders read more

Horse rescued from canal by firefighters

Horse rescued from canal by firefighters Video courtesy of West Midlands Fire Service

A horse has been rescued from a canal in the West Midlands by a team of firefighters.

The distressed animal was found neck deep in water at Walbrook Bridge in Coseley.

It had fallen into the canal after being left tethered too close to the bank.

A technical rescue team from West Midlands Fire Service used ropes and harnesses to pull it safety.

The RSPCA has said the horse is in relatively good health and its appealing for information so it can contact its owners.

Says Adrienne Yentis

Says Adrienne YentisA friend of mine recently was riding on the heath
and she came across a group of cattle strung out across the bridlepath with no way through – the only way off was to turn round. Fortunately her horse
remained calm throughout. But you can imagine how a nervous horse might react ........... read more

Coming to a bridleway near you: A hover-bike

Says Linda Wright

Says Linda WrightWe moved to a Shropshire location a year ago having surveyed the local OS map and noted the significant number of bridleways around the property. Sadly the map appears a total fiction. Scarce any of the bridleways are usable ........... read more

Lameness remains key problem for UK horses, horse heath survey reveals.

Lameness remains key problem for UK horses, horse heath survey reveals

The National Equine Health Survey has confirmed for the second year that lameness is the most common syndrome affecting the UK's horses and ponies. This year's results have also revealed an apparent increase in laminitis compared with previous years.

Run annually by Blue Cross, in partnership with the British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA), NEHS is sponsored by SPILLERS and Zoetis and supported by the UK's leading equestrian organisations and charities.

This year's results revealed that almost one in five (18.5%) horses were suffering with lameness due to joint disease or other non-foot related problems. The results are consistent with last year's non-foot related lameness figure of 18.6%.

NEHS 2014 has also highlighted that laminitis had a much higher prevalence than in previous years (7.1%) with 43% of these recorded as first episodes. Past NEHS results showed a lower number of horses affected by laminitis (4.4% overall prevalence of laminitis, with 25% first episodes, 2013) but further work is needed to confirm if this increase is representative of the total horse population in the UK.

Gemma Taylor, Education Officer at Blue Cross explains: "The increase in laminitis may be linked to the mild winter, extensive rainfall and consistently warm spring. These conditions were ideal for flushes of grass growth, known to be a trigger for the disease."

The top five findings from the 2014 survey are:

  • Lameness affected almost 1 in 5 horses (18.5% of returns 2014, 18.6% 2013; 13.8% 2010-2012). Most lameness was due to joint disease and other non-foot causes of lameness with foot lameness (not including laminitis) accounting for only a quarter of all lameness.
  • Laminitis had a higher prevalence than in previous years (7.1%) with 43% of these recorded as first episodes and 67% as recurrent episodes. This contrasts with the 2013 NEHS data of 4.4% (25% first occurrences and 75% recurrent episodes).
  • Skin disease was recorded in 18.3% of cases (14.6% 2013,15.2% 2010-2012). Sarcoids were again a prevalent tumour (5.6% 2014; 2.8% 2013; 3.25% in NEHS 2010-12), reinforcing previous NEHS surveys and the published data.
  • Overweight horses or ponies were recorded in 16.9% of cases (7.8% 2013, 7.5% 2010 – 2012) with most horses (79%) being recorded as ideal/normal weight and 4% recorded as being underweight. New data was obtained on weight monitoring. 59% or respondents said that they assess weight regularly, with 85% using weigh tapes.
  • Respiratory disease was reported by 7.1% of respondents (5% 2013; 5% 2010-2012). The majority of horses (96%) were affected by allergic respiratory disease (6.9%; 4.2% 2103; 3.6% 2010-12), which was more frequently recorded than infectious respiratory disease at 0.3 (0.3% 2013, 0.5% 2010-12).

In response to an increase in reports of Atypical Myopathy in the UK, a question on this frequently fatal disease was included in this year's survey. 13 veterinary-confirmed cases were reported.

Josh Slater from the Royal Veterinary College, who is member of BEVA's Health & Medicines Committee and analysed the data, explained: "We are keen to continue to collect information on the prevalence of Atypical Myopathy through the survey. The number of cases of this disease that occur each year are not known and although NEHS has provided a snapshot we need to capture data from a much larger number of horses to know how common this disease truly is across the UK as whole."

Participation in NEHS has increased significantly this year. Data was collected from 11,002 horses, ponies, donkeys and mules across the UK, representing an increase of more than double last year's figure of 4,730. The majority of horses reported (88%) were kept either in livery yards or private yards, with only 0.7% kept by equine welfare charities.

Josh Slater commented: "Year on year we are building a unique database on the health and disease status of the UK equine population that will allow health benchmarking across the equine industry. The annual surveys have shown consistent trends and already challenged some established dogma on disease prevalence, for example laminitis, and validated much of the accepted veterinary opinion, for example on lameness and colic."

To download a copy of the results please visit www.bluecross.org.uk and to register for next year's survey please visit www.bluecross.org.uk/nehs

Chelmsford City Racecourse Joins the Racecourse Association

Chelmsford City Racecourse Joins the Racecourse Association

The RCA has announced that Chelmsford City Racecourse (CCR) has become a member. The RCA will represent 58 of the 59 racecourses that will host racing in Britain in 2015.

RCA Chief Executive Stephen Atkin commented, 'We are delighted to see racing back at Chelmsford City Racecourse and to welcome them as the newest member of the RCA. We are looking forward to working with the Racecourse on a wide range of issues and helping them in the run-up to their first fixtures.'

Phil Siers, General Manager of Chelmsford City Racecourse said, 'Now that we are about to start racing, it is essential that Chelmsford City Racecourse is able to benefit from the comprehensive help the RCA can provide. We are delighted to be a new member and look forward to CCR working with our colleagues there, to provide a high race program in the coming years.'

Says Maureen ComberI have been given an ASBO by the Hampshire County Council for standing up for riders rights.

How many other people have been silenced by Hampshire County Council? ........... read more

Pony tries to BITE Queen during welcome to Balmoral photo in folder - queen

Pony tries to BITE Queen during welcome to Balmoral photo in folder - queen

- The Queen appeared delighted when she was reunited with Cruachan VI

- Shetland pony is the mascot of the Royal Regiment of Scotland

- Tradition began in 1928 and each mascot has the title of 'Pony Major'

- The Queen began her own riding career on a Shetland, her first pony Peggy · Cruachan VI was helping to officially welcome Her Majesty to Balmoral

Read more .........

Double win for giant Horses Heads at environmental awards.

Double win for giant Horses Heads at environmental awards

Two Falkirk green projects have come out on top at a national environmental awards ceremony.

The Falkirk Greenspace Initiative, which has planted 1.3m trees and created or upgraded 260km of paths over 20 years, won the Gold award at the Green Apple Environmental Awards.

And the £41m Helix parkland project was close behind in second place.

Falkirk Council was also honoured with the Overall Winner prize for the success of the two projects.

The Green Apple Awards is a national campaign to find Scotland's most environmentally-friendly companies, councils and communities.

The Falkirk Greenspace Initiative was set up by the council and the charity Central Scotland Forest Trust in 1993, and has restored several derelict sites in addition to planting trees and building paths.

Meanwhile the Helix project, driven by a partnership between the same two bodies and Scottish Canals, has already attracted more than 15,000 visitors after the unveiling of the Kelpies, Andy Scott's celebrated giant horse head sculptures.

Councillor Adrian Mahoney, Falkirk Council's spokesman for culture, leisure and tourism, said the "visionary projects" were a "fantastic achievement" for the local authority and its partners.

He said: "Both the Greenspace Initiative and the Helix have played a significant part in the transformation of the local environment while also linking and connecting our many communities."

And Central Scotland Forest Trust chief executive Simon Rennie said he was "very proud" of the awards.

He said: "These are both innovative projects which have transformed the local environment, creating valuable resources for local communities and dramatically improving perceptions of the area, attracting tourism and inward investment."

Equine Superstore

A unique chance to ride through the battlefields of the First World War

A unique chance to ride through the battlefields of the First World War

The Battlefield Centenary Tour 2014
- Retreat from Mons – September 12th -20th.

Britain's largest rescue and rehoming horse charity, World Horse Welfare, has organised a bespoke tour to commemorate the centenary of the start of WW1 and the debt owed to horses.

The nine-day trip will be steeped in history, offering riders the chance to ride through Northern France and Belgium to visit many of the significant and poignant battlefield sites, cemeteries and museums of the First World War.

"We invite supporters to join us on our unique Battlefield Centenary Ride that will follow in the hoof prints of the brave horses and men of the Great War. Together we will remember the sacrifices made during this horrific four years by our soldiers and horses who fell in the many battles that ensued," said Frances Plume who is organising the ride on behalf of the charity. Riders will travel on the Eurostar to Brussels and will meet a military historian who will transport the riders back 100 years as he guides the party through the many sites that helped to change the face of history.

The official tour begins in Mons, via Soignies. The party will then travel to Mauberge where they can try a special commemorative WW1 ale called 'Souvient tol' in a local brewery.

On the second day, after a one-day stopover in Mauberge, the real riding begins. From Mauberge to Le Cateau, the participants will visit the room and grave of English WW1 poet and soldier, Wilfred Owen, before staying the night at Le Cateau.

The team will travel on to Maretz and then Vermand, near Saint Quentin, to spend the night in gypsy caravans.

The guided tour will continue through to Sancourt; Bussy; Saint Crepin aux bois, north of the Foret de Compeigne and Villers Cotterets, via Pierrefonds.

The battlefield ride commences on September 12th and ends on the 20th. For more details on how to get your place on this trip of a lifetime, please contact Frances Plume on 01953 497210 or email her at francesplume@worldhorsewelfare.org.

You can also sign up via World Horse Welfare's website where you can download the brochure or register for the event.

Says Tony Barnett

Says Tony BarnettGATES OR STILE’S WILL ONLY BE LAWFUL AS LONG AS THE REASONS FOR THE INSTALLATIONS ARE SERVING THE PURPOSE FOR WHICH THEY WERE INTENDED.

ANY STOPPING UP OR CLOSING OFF OF RIGHTS OF WAY SHOULD BE CHALLENGED FOR APPROVAL/CONSENT FROM THE APPROPRIATE MINISTER OF THE CROWN ........... read more

Chelated Minerals Explained

Chelated Minerals Explained

There are not many feed rooms these days that don't have at least one tub of supplement on their shelves and walk into any feed merchant and the choice of supplements available to purchase can be mind-boggling.

Here, animal nutrition company Alltech provide advice gained with more than 30 years' experience in this field.

  • Horses require minerals to support all the functions of the body, minerals are present in the fluid contents of cells and are involved in enzyme action, the nervous system, and hormone system and blood formation.
  • Minerals are found in grass, hay, concentrate feeds and in low growing herbs in good pasture and can be divided into two groups, major minerals and trace elements.
  • Supplementation of the horse's diet is recommended to ensure that they receive adequate intake. Horses in a natural setting would graze a wide area and have excess to a variety of vegetation, meaning their mineral requirements would easily be met. Most horses today are part-stabled and turned out in smaller fields with access to limited varieties of grasses on land that may have had long term grazing leading to the minerals becoming depleted.
  • Chelation (key-lay-shun) is the chemical process by which a mineral (iron, cobalt, copper, zinc, manganese) is combined with a mixture of amino acids and peptides.
  • Recent research indicates that with minerals bound to amino acids and peptides (chelation), less interaction occurs and more mineral is absorbed by the horse.
  • Minerals fed as sulphates or oxides typically are poorly absorbed because, as weakly charged transitional elements, they interact with other minerals flowing through the digestive tract.
  • The benefits of chelated minerals include increased absorption, reduced quantity of mineral in the diet and reduction of mineral pollution through excretion.
  • Chelated organic trace minerals provides mineral nutrition in a form as close to nature as possible.

The Lifeforce Range from Alltech is designed to optimise the digestive health of horses at every stage of life, from breeding stock to pleasure and performance animals.

For further information please visit www.lifeforcehorse.co.uk
or telephone 01780 764512

Says Linda WrightWe moved to a Shropshire location a year ago having surveyed the local OS map and noted the significant number of bridleways around the property. Sadly the map appears a total fiction. Scarce any of the bridleways are usable ........... read more

Horseytalk - Product of the Week

Give Bacteria the Boot with the Equi-Med Ag Stable Boots

Give Bacteria the Boot with the Equi-Med Ag Stable BootsIs your horse or pony prone to bacterial infections such as mud fever or cracked heels during winter? Give bacteria the boot with the Equi-Med Ag Antibacterial Stable Boots.

Like no other product on the market, the patented Equi-Med Antibacterial Stable Boots have been designed with an advanced dual action combining activated carbon and silver in the fabric.

Give Bacteria the Boot with the Equi-Med Ag Stable BootsThe activated carbon draws bacteria out of the infected area into the fabric whilst the silver works to eliminate bacteria, allowing the wounds to heal faster. The boots are ideal to use on knocks, scrapes or cuts to help reduce the risk of infection and any post exercise swelling.

Using the Equi-Med boots is hassle free and eliminates the need for additional topical products and possibly the need for other medication, saving you money. They can be used as part of your everyday stable management routine for horses that are prone to bacterial infections to help maintain a healthy skin.

Designed for indoor use, the boots can simply be applied to clean legs when the horse is stabled. This should allow for regular turnout during the day as normal. The boots have a comfortable and breathable design which allows the fabric to get as close as possible to the skin without restricting movement.

The boots can be machine washed as per instructions, making them a very cost effective way of keeping bacterial infections at bay. Any grease or dirt can simply be brushed away with a body brush for day to day cleaning.

The Equi-Med Ag Stable Boots start from £104.95 for a pair and are available in sizes 1-4 to fit all horses. In a recent study by Equi-Med Ag and veterinary consultant Cedric Chan, antimicrobial testing showed 99% of cases that were randomly chosen from around the UK were caused by Staphylococcus Aureus and the bacterial infection was successfully treated using the Equi-Med Ag range. In severe cases always consult your veterinary surgeon.

For more information on the Equi-Med Ag products visit www.EquiMedAg.co.uk or call on 0191 5118323 or 0777 5577165.

Caption Corner
Send us your caption for this photo

Horseytalk.net Caption Competition

Says Naomi Smith

Says Naomi SmithIt is all too possible to round a corner on horseback and come upon a group of cattle with no prior warning -this WILL result in a horse being badly spooked at best, bolting at worst -it is only a matter of time ........... read more

Congratulations

Sue Bowie

Sue Bowie

Bristol based Sue Bowie has won the British Eventing 2014 Volunteer of the Year award. Sue was nominated by Miranda Collett and helps by scoring at a number of events each year, where she has proven herself to be unfailingly capable, cheerful and effective.

At Bicton Arena in April Sue's efforts were described by her colleagues as "exceptional". When Withington Manor was cancelled on the Friday evening and Bicton decided to run an extra day on the Sunday Sue re-routed to Bicton and took over the running of the scoring team for Miranda. With Sue's help the entries could be processed and times prepared for the additional competition on Sunday. Miranda said, "We couldn't have put on that extra day of competition without her help. Sue is the best scorer's assistant ever."

The Young Volunteer of the Year award went to 17 year old Alex Holman from Gloucestershire. Alex was nominated by 2012 Volunteer of the Year Jennie Smith and has stepped up to work as a crossing point steward at various events over the last few years.

Alex volunteers with a genuine desire to help out in the sport he loves and has not backed off at the thought of long days manning one of the most difficult jobs on event - crossing points! Alex has shown that he is reliable, good with the public and shows a real love of eventing.

The Fence Judge of the Year award goes to husband and wife team Barry and Jean Kew, nominated by Jenny Smith. Jean and Barry are based in Somerset and have been volunteering for over 15 years. They have a quiet patience, modesty and humour about them that belies their capabilities and makes them popular amongst organisers and volunteers alike. They are genuinely happy to take on the simplest to the most complex fence without complaint or comment, and are always the first to offer to swap roles if there is a shortage in another area. The couple regularly volunteer at a number of events including Larkhill, Somerley, West Buckland, Howick, Chepstow, Barbury, Wilton, Calmsden, Withington, Dauntsey, Pontispool and Aldon.

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Horse and Country TV

Mon 25 August, 2014

Horse and Country

Tv

6:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 1/14)

7:00pm Yard Talk: Robert Walker Top showing rider and producer Robert Walker introduces the hunters, hacks and cobs that live on his Cheshire yard, and talks about his return to top-level competition after a life-threatening illness

Tv

7:30pm H&C Masterclass: Robert Walker Top showing producer Robert Walker shows how to ride a successful show on grass and gives turnout tips.

8:00pm Rudall's Round-Up: Hickstead Derby › Jenny heads to the All England Showjumping Course, the home of British showjumping, for all the behind the scenes action over Derby week.

Tv

8:30pm Rudall's Round-Up: GCT London Jenny travels to the heart of London, to go behind the scenes at the Global Champions Tour where the world's best showjumpers are set to compete.

9:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 1/14)

Tv

10:00pm WDM 2014: Falsterbo Catch the action from Falsterbo 2014. International dressage at its very best with riders from all over the world competing which offers an unrivalled platform to showcase British talent.

11:00pm Gypsy Vanner Steeped in the legend, romance, and mystery of the gypsies and travelling people. Take a journey through the British Isles and across America in discovery of a new breed of horse, the Gypsy Vanner.

Tv

Tues 26 August, 2014

Horse and Country

Tv

5:00pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty Breaking In. Black Beauty seems a little more receptive to his new friends, although Vicky's first attempt to tame him ends up with her seeing a lot more of the ground than the saddle. (S1, Ep 3/26)

5:30pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty Ride A Black Horse. A drama occurs at the farm, whilst Jenny is out on call, the local police come knocking. It is Black Beauty they're after but Vicky puts up a strong fight. (S1, Ep 4/26)

6:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 2/14)

Tv

7:00pm Around the Dog World Just a few yards from the Queen's residence, Windsor Championship Dog show in Green Park is one of the glittering events on the canine calendar. Watch highlights and exclusive interviews on ATDW.

8:00pm Top Marks: Harry Goes Hunting Kelly Marks tries her hand at blood hounding and drag hunting along with her 18hh giant Harry. He hasn't jumped before or been around hounds. See how they get on as they venture into the countryside.

Tv

9:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 2/14)

10:00pm GCT 2014: Valkenswaard Valkenswaard, regarded by many, as the spiritual home of the Longines Global Champions Tour, is always a favourite with riders, owners and sponsors alike.

Tv

Wed 27 August, 2014

Horse and Country

Tv

5:00pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty Ride A Black Horse. A drama occurs at the farm, whilst Jenny is out on call, the local police come knocking. It is Black Beauty they're after but Vicky puts up a strong fight. (S1, Ep 4/26)

5:30pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty Deceptive Appearances. The circus is in town, while Vicky and Beauty are on their mail route they encounter two clown-like characters, but everything is not quite as it seems. (S1, Ep 5/26)

Tv

6:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 3/14)

7:00pm GCT 2014: Valkenswaard Valkenswaard, regarded by many, as the spiritual home of the Longines Global Champions Tour, is always a favourite with riders, owners and sponsors alike.

Tv

9:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 3/14)

Tv

10:00pm SJI Premier Series 2014 Aimee McClenahan heads to Mullingar International Horse Show for the second leg of the Horseware/TRM Premier Grand Prix Series where the best Irish Showjumpers compete to win the prize fund. (Ep 2/ 8)

11:00pm Hounds & The Huntsman › A fascinating documentary about a Sussex huntsman who has developed a unique relationship with his hounds. Follow the pack as they feed, breed, get judged at shows and chase the scent of a fox.

Tv

Thurs 28 August, 2014

Horse and Country

Tv

5:30pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty Fear Of Water. Vicky and Beauty are riding on the beach when they discover an injured sailor lying on the rocks, but where has he come from? (S1, Ep 6/26)

6:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 4/14)

Tv

7:00pm SJI Premier Series 2014 Aimee McClenahan presents the Horseware/TRM Premier Grand Prix Series at the Omagh Show where some of the best Showjumpers in Ireland will contend to take home the prize fund. (Ep 3/ 8)

8:00pm Vet Essentials Jenny Rudall explores laminitis with the help of top vets, bringing you tips and advice on how to manage and avoid this painful condition. (Ep 1/3)

9:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 4/14)

Tv

10:00pm Athina Onassis Horse Show Named after his wife, the Brazilian rider Alvaro Alfonso de Miranda Neto has, for the 7th year running, invited the world's best showjumpers to compete over 3 days for prize money totalling ?569,000.

11:30pm Seventh Sense A film about a woman's journey to harness the seventh sense of horses to provide healing to herself and disabled children in South Africa.

Tv

Fri 29 August, 2014

Horse and Country

Tv

5:00pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty Fear Of Water. Vicky and Beauty are riding on the beach when they discover an injured sailor lying on the rocks, but where has he come from? (S1, Ep 6/26)

5:30pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty Treasure Hunt. On her way home from her mail route, Vicky meets Manfred, who seems to be very secretive about a parcel he has just received. (S1, Ep 7/ 26)

6:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 5/14)

Tv

7:00pm Carl and Charlotte: Going Dutch Olympic gold medallists Carl Hester and Charlotte Dujardin head to the spectacular KWPN Stallion Show in the Netherlands. While there, they continue their quest to find their next star dressage horse.

8:00pm Vet Essentials Jenny Rudall explores equine Cushing's or PPID, with tips and advice from top vets on how to manage the condition and keep your horse in good health. (Ep 2/3)

Tv

9:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 5/14)

10:00pm Rolex Grand Slam Geneva Highlights from the Rolex Grand Slam Geneva leg. Bringing together the top riders from all over the globe on a quest to win the most difficult-to-obtain trophies in the world of equestrian sport.

Tv

Sat 30 August, 2014

Horse and Country

Tv

5:00pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty Treasure Hunt. On her way home from her mail route, Vicky meets Manfred, who seems to be very secretive about a parcel he has just received. (S1, Ep 7/ 26)

5:30pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty The Birdman. Manfred is busy preparing his man-powered plane for its first flight. A sceptical crowd turn up at the beach to watch Manfred's attempt to fly. (S1, Ep 8/26)

Tv

6:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 6/14)

7:00pm Blair Castle Horse Trials 2014 In the year before Blair hosts the FEI European Eventing Championships, all eyes will rest upon the Castle set in the stunning Cairngorm Mountains of north Scotland.

8:00pm Vet Essentials Jenny Rudall explores colic, with advice from top vets on how to manage and avoid the condition, and tips on keeping your horse in good health. (Ep 3/3)

Tv

9:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 6/14)

10:00pm GCT 2014: Valkenswaard Valkenswaard, regarded by many, as the spiritual home of the Longines Global Champions Tour, is always a favourite with riders, owners and sponsors alike.

Tv

Sun 31 August, 2014

Horse and Country

Tv

5:00pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty The Birdman. Manfred is busy preparing his man-powered plane for its first flight. A sceptical crowd turn up at the beach to watch Manfred's attempt to fly. (S1, Ep 8/26)

5:30pm The New Adventures of Black Beauty Different Races. Vicky is out riding when she runs into a girl called Phoebe. Vicky is keen to make friends with her new acquaintance as she does not have any girlfriends her own age. (S1, Ep 9/26)

Tv

6:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 7/14)

7:00pm FEI Junior European Eventing 2014 Hosted by Bishop Burton College, East Yorkshire,14 Nations and over 80 competitors will be competing for individual and team honours in the college's beautiful parkland.

Tv

8:00pm SJI Premier Series 2014 Aimee McClenahan attends the Cork Summer Show for the fourth leg of the Horseware/TRM Premier Grand Prix Series to some of the best Showjumpers in Ireland competing in the competition. (Ep 4/ 8)

9:00pm WEG Daily Review A review of the latest highlights from the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. (Ep 7/14)

10:00pm Rolex Grand Slam Geneva Highlights from the Rolex Grand Slam Geneva leg. Bringing together the top riders from all over the globe on a quest to win the most difficult-to-obtain trophies in the world of equestrian sport.

Tv
RURAL TV can be watched in the UK and Ireland on Sky Channel 279 and Freesat 403

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