Dear Member

I promised myself I wouldn’t say it but I have to “Where has this year gone? It’s now July!”
Following the agreement with the BHS to introduce Continual Professional Development (CPD) recognition to more of our days, this year seems to have opened up with an absolute blast of informative and innovative study days. Thank you, David, for hosting the first of those days with the visit to Wellington Training given by Dickie Waygood. Reading back through the report it was once again, a much appreciated start to the season for the riders and spectators. Then followed two days organised by Sue Ricketts – the day with Tim Downes at Ingestre and in March with Nick Turner at Myerscough College, between which was the National Equine Forum in London where we sent two delegates, and the Fellowship training day with Danny Anholt at Millfield. This last was followed up by another day for those wishing to aspire to the Senior Coach and Fellowship exams in June with Danny demystifying those examinations. A trip to Talland for a day with Pammy Hutton took place in April.

And then onto Badminton Horse Trials where the indomitable Eric Smiley marched a large group around the XC course. Eric asked us why we were there – were we there to win/be placed or just because we had qualified or because we wanted the experience and at each fence we rethought that gem of information. I ‘changed’ horses at least twice! Later in June Ian Stark was under the headlights as he walked the Bramham XC course – thanks Ruth Baxter for getting us to that part of England. This was followed by watching members being coached by Judy as she encouraged us to look and interact. Meanwhile Facebook was full of excited people who had made their way to Nottingham Trent University for the Research & Technology in Coaching day organised by Sam York. Hold onto your hats there’s a whisper this marvellous day may travel nationwide. The fabulous F&I Banner has been seen at the BHS Convention and Badminton Horse trials, to name but a few of its
outings.

We were invited to Ireland where Faith Ponsonby provided us with a feast of a day. Willie Mullins the maestro of National Hunt racing, allowed 30 of us visit his yard for a full morning and many managed “selfies” with Ruby Walsh! After lunch, off to Sam Watson 4* Irish event rider who also helps Willie’s staff with training the horses – he gave us his time and showed us round his yard and horses. Two very comprehensive reports have been written by Amy and Alice Bannister Bell.

After that brief run through of what we have done in this first half of a superb year, there’s more to come – but first we have a new Fellow of the British Horse Society. Our own committee member Sam York FBHS, we are so proud. Do read what Sam has to say on the F&I page of the latest British Horse magazine. From all F&I members once again Sam WELL DONE.

So what now? Well we are all hectic – whether with ourselves or our clients competing, students re exams (should I say awards)? The Launch of the new Award Structure takes place at Wellington Riding on Monday 17th July, I personally feel we must ‘grasp the metal’ and promote these new Awards and so support the British Horse Society. So, this is that ‘make hay whilst the sun shines’ time of the year. But there’s more – Hickstead Ladies Day is on Saturday 29th July. You’ve still time
to book tickets from Karen Irving at BHS offices, these are heavily subsidised by the BHS who are organising a prize for the Best Dressed Lady in the box. On 10th August some intrepid folk will be making their way across to Dublin Horse Show to see some fabulous horse and possibly buy – take care who you chat to if you’re flying home Ryanair with only a 10kg hand baggage allowance! September sees another course walk at Blenheim organised by Ann Bostock and at the last enquiry
hopefully with Chris Bartle. October Andrew Fletcher has arranged a Yard Visit to Carl Hester – and already we’re looking forward to a fantastic course again at Addington in January, get that in your diaries now.

However, there has been a very sad occurrence this summer, as our Tom Searle tragically took his own life. So much has been posted on our Facebook page about Tom, a very charming young man and a great competitor and coach. Those of you who knew him well will join me for a moment as we think about Tom and what he meant to each of us. David Sheerin is organising a very special training extravaganza at Wellington on October 16th in order to raise money for the charity Heads Together,
please put that date in your diary and look out for further information.

If anyone feels there is a lack of F&I presence in their area then PLEASE PLEASE organise something for us all to attend. Without these stalwart volunteers, nothing would happen anywhere. Di Roberts has an organisers pack which she will email across to you, you then print off the various forms and our present Treasurer Jude will also support you. Jude Di & I are here to help with any queries you may have, whether it’s classroom based with horse or on another route march round XC fences.
THIS IS YOUR ASSOCIATION – HELP US TO HELP YOU!

Jillie Rogers

13th July 2017