Chairman’s Report, AGM 2013

Happy New Year to all!

Olympics etc.

  • What a year the sporting world has had in general but specifically the Equestrians! The highlight of course has to be the London 2012 Olympics.

Dressage – Team Gold and Individual Gold and Bronze

SJ – Team Gold

Eventing – Team Silver

Olympia 2012 – Charlotte won both the Reem Acra FEI World Cup GP (84.447%) and the Freestyle to Music (87.975%).

  • UK Sport has increased the funding allocation from now until Rio in 2016 from £13.4m to £17.9m. Good news. Still a way off Rowing’s allocation of £32.6m!! Still, we mustn’t complain!!

Many congratulations to all Fellows and I’s who were involved in some way with our successes.

The Association has had a busy and successful year. Currently there are 196 names on the database but Judith will give you more information with regard to this in her Treasurer’s report.

Courses and Training 2012:

  • 11/12 January 2012 – F&I Annual 2-day course taken by Judy Harvey and Kenneth Clawson  – very well received and participants and observers were rewarded with 2 days of excellent training tip and ideas.
  • In March – there were two reports – one on the day spent watching and learning from Mrs Robeson at her National Hunt Yard on Bucks. and the other from the National Equine Forum held at the Institute of Mechanical Engineers in Westminster where Sue Pimbley reportedly delivered an excellent paper on the value of Equine Degrees. Both days sounded exceptionally informative and beneficial.
  • 16 July – Ernest Dillon was again busy giving jump training to members at Wellington Riding in Hampshire
  • 21 July – Ladies Day at Hickstead
  • 3 October – Marketing Yourself and your Business held at BHS HQ at Stoneleigh – a very interesting and informative day
  • 15 October – at Coleg Gwent, Gareth Hughes gave an excellent and well-attended clinic – the reports received on his training style and methods were glowing
  • 29 November – Carl Hester yard visit – this was of course very popular and extremely interesting

New Website

Many thanks must go to Sally Newcomb who developed the site and without whose expertise we would have been lost!

New BHSI’s

This year we had seven new BHSI’s – Gemma Barry, Tina Canton, Catherine Cundall, Melissa Garry, Benjamin Greenwood, Suzanna Seymour and Sarah Thorne. Congratulations and welcome to one and all.  Later in proceedings, Lynn Petersen will be awarding certificates.

Jo Winfield

In June 2012, Jo stepped down as Chairman and I was asked to stand in as Acting Chair until this meeting when we will formally vote in a new Chairman.

I just want to say a big thank you to Jo for her sterling work while she was in post and hope that she will continue to remain an active and supportive member of the Association.


On a very sad note, back in June 2012, Jane Goldsmith a dedicated and renowned trainer and coach died – her funeral was attended by many well-known equestrians – including most of the Para team members. It was also with great sadness that we heard that Kenneth Clawson died only very recently – his funeral was held last week; he was a lovely man and a brilliant trainer who helped so many riders to glory. Both friends will be sorely missed.

Wealth of Talent

What a wealth of talent we have amongst our members – just look round the room.

There is so much we can learn from each other and when we hold a training day, the atmosphere is one where we feel we can ask questions and discuss in a relaxed environment, which is conducive to learning. We need to keep each other informed of what is going on in our areas so that everyone can benefit. I know it has been said before but please be proactive in helping to organise training days/seminars etc. and also to support these days and to spread the word that they are happening. If it keeps boiling down to only a few members who are willing to actively put on such days, their enthusiasm will wane and ultimately you, the member will lose out. Any thoughts on what you would like the Association to organise, please let a committee member know.

An email came to Di within the past few days from Alex Robinson-Barr at Bicton College who asked for more training days in the SW – Bicton will offer facilities FoC; she cited Clare Sansom, Sue Petty and Peter Cook as potential trainers.

Pat Smallwood Award

The decision was a unanimous with regard to who should receive this prestigious and beautiful award this year – Kenneth Clawson – a well-respected coach and dear colleague to so many of us. He will be sorely missed by all who’s life he touched.

Can I take this opportunity to wish you all a very fruitful and prosperous 2013 and to urge you all to support the Association even more than you do already!! Enjoy the dinner and second day of the course.