Sum_12_New_heavyhorse_driving_classes_to_attract_young_people_227New heavy horse driving classes to attract young people

Equifest, Peterborough (15-19 August), is to introduce a new range of heavy horse novice and junior whip driving classes to encourage younger heavy horse enthusiasts and newcomers. Enhanced riding classes, a concours d’elegance and a foreign breeds class will also be held. The move comes at the instigation of Shire enthusiast and showperson Wendy Toomer-Harlow: “Hopefully it will be a stepping stone to a full turnout for some, and may encourage some of the riders to have their horses broken to drive as well if they have classes they can enter,” she says. The new classes are: Heavy Horse Open Driven, Heavy Horse Novice Driver, Heavy Horse Junior Whip and Heavy Horse Cones Obstacle Driving.

Sum_12_Branching_out_how_one_couple_developed_new_heavy_horse_businesses_350Branching out – how one couple developed new heavy horse businesses

Richard Branscombe and Tricia Hills run their heavy horse operations, Swainsford Heavy Horses and Blue Horse Equine, from their Wiltshire farm. Richard, who has worked with heavies and as a horse logger for more than 20 years has set up a business to provide training for people and horses in all disciplines, while he and Tricia have set up the second business to take advantage of the first-class horse-drawn implements and harness manufactured in the USA and Canada. They are now importing a range of modern equipment suitable for the British heavy horse enthusiast, helping to encourage the working of horses in the UK.


Sum_12_Vocational_training_with_working_horses_350Vocational training with working horses

Flora Gathorne-Hardy, who is following the new QCF qualifications in working horsemanship, describes the first steps in her training programme, including her diary notes covering basic horse care, training a horse to work in harness and working with horses on the land. The training is available through the British Driving Society, which also validates the courses.

Sum 12 Best beefBest beef

Former Suffolk stallion walker, Wags Aldred, one of the last of these exceptional people left, tells a story from the heyday of the heavy horse, of a stallion with whom he had a special relationship. Find out how they get on, and what happens in the end…






Sum 12 Marton Pool a challenging projectMarton Pool - a challenging project

The swampy shores of a lake posed a challenge for the horse logging team working on a project in Shropshire, led by British Horse Loggers (BHL) chairman Doug Joiner. Marton Pool is a highly sensitive site on the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance, but willow scrub encroaching on the important reed bed habitat needed to be removed. The environmental importance of the area and the soft ground meant the site was an ideal candidate for horses, but the conditions proved challenging. Find out how the loggers got on.

Plus . . .
  • Your Letters - your views and news - packed with heavy horse interest
  • From this side of the fence:  William Castle’s column on current issues

  • Heavy Horse World Shop – our comprehensive selection of books and DVDs on heavy horse subjects plus the new book, Ron Creasey: Last of the Horselads, and a new DVD, National Shire Horse Show 2012, as well as the HHW 25th anniversary commemorative horse brass

  • Heavy Horse World Classifieds – where to go for all your needs – horses, harness, vehicles, books etc

  • Heavy Horse World Breeders Directory – now two and a half pages! Locate the breeder of your choice

  • Plus… order an annual subscription to Heavy Horse World for friend or family – just £24 (£26 Europe/£28 Rest of the World)!



Sum_12_SCHHA_40th_anniversary_Spring_Working_350SCHHA 40th anniversary Spring Working

The UK’s oldest working horse society, Southern Counties Heavy Horse Association, celebrated its 40th Spring Working at Harbridge Farm, near Ringwood, Hampshire in April with a wide variety of working horse breeds and types put through their paces on everything from ploughing and harrowing to turnout and cones driving to skills tests and arena displays.

Sum_12_Shire_and_Clydesdale_breed_shows_1_350Shire and Clydesdale breed shows

The 2012 Clydesdale National Stallion Show and National Shire Horse Show are featured in this issue with full reports and plenty of images. Sum_12_Shire_and_Clydesdale_breed_shows_350Congratulations to Ian Young who won the stallion championship and took the Cawdor Cup in Scotland with his Arradoul Balvenie, handled by Ronnie Black, with the females led by Malcolm McFadyen’s Carnaff Lady Lucinda. At Peterborough the top honours went to Paul Bedford’s much-admired Metheringham Upton Hamlet, with F M Richardson’s Bewholme Midnight Sensation proving just that in the females, and John Goodwin winning the turnout championship.




Sum 12 Four Greats of the Shire horse worldFour ‘Greats’ of the Shire horse world

Top Shire breeder Alistair King, who runs Cotebrook Shire Horse Centre in Cheshire, reflected on this year’s National Shire Horse Show and came up with his four ‘greats’ of modern times – a top showman, a leading breeder, the stallion he thinks is the best stock getter since World War II and the greatest show stallion he has seen – find out who they are in this Summer issue, and see if you agree!




Sum_12_World_first_international_Shire_semen_exchange_350World-first international Shire semen exchange


In a ground-breaking move, two studs, in Australia and the USA, are to exchange semen between two leading Shire stallions, Oakridge Speculator and Hickory Hill Nitro of the Northeast. The studs, owned respectively by the Kuiper/Biffin family and Janet Long, will use the semen to enhance breed lines in the two countries. This is the first time Shire semen has been exported between Australia and the USA.








Other features in this issue include…

  • British Percheron Society’s 2012 stallion day

  • London Harness Horse Parade 2012

  • Draught Horse Answers – on pastern dermatitis

  • Memories of the Canewdon Percherons

  • Ayrshire Big Y’ns

  • Wagons and carts in focus – this issue, in Dorset

  • 2012 Mullahead Ploughing Match

  • Equine Machines – the last instalment in the series

  • Spring Working at Gressenhall

  • How Horses At Work told the story of the urban draught horse

  • Shires provide therapy in Devon

  • Six copies of a new novel to give away!