Prince of Wales hosts reception to support working horses
Plans for the British Festival of the Working Horse received a boost in December when HRH The Prince of Wales held a reception at Clarence House, London for working horse enthusiasts and event supporters.




Spr_11_image1_250x127Before the reception a Christmas tree was delivered to Clarence House on a horse-drawn forwarder pulled by Percheron mare, Ella. At the reins was Doug Joiner, chair of the British Horse Loggers, which has The Prince as its patron, and who is supporting the idea of the festival. The event, planned for Windsor Great Park on 7-9 September 2012 plans to celebrate all aspects of working horses.


Heavy Horse World Events List 2011

The Shire Horse Show is just the start of a busy season of activity for heavy horses, their owners and followers. This issue includes our six-page listing of shows, events, parades and ploughing matches all over the UK where heavy horses can be seen – the most comprehensive list anywhere! Many enthusiasts buy this issue just for this list!



Roger Clark' observations on today's horsemanship
One of Roger's great disappointments, looking back over the revival of interest in cart horses, is the slow interest in the 'proper' use of the horse in agriculture. How different is the impression given at some heavy horse events compared to the efficient and skilled use of horses and implements by experienced people like Jim Young. One of the greatest problems today is finding really quiet horses for beginners to learn from. Horses only become good and quiet by being worked hard on a regular basis by horsemen who know how to use them – it's a vicious circle!



Spr_11_image7_250x150Working ponies help with footpath restoration
Ponies are also busy at work alongside their heavy breed cousins. Fell ponies are helping the National Trust restore high level paths in some of the most beautiful countryside in Britain. Christine Robinson's sturdy native ponies from the Kerbeck Stud provide an ideal form of transport in the 'Fix the Fells' project taking place in the Lake District. The equine volunteers are ideal for transporting helicopter lift bags to remote parts of Cumbria to help restore worn compacted footpaths, just like their packhorse ancestors.



The Norfolk Plough
Stephen Pope, a volunteer at Gressenhall Farm & Workhouse in Norfolk, describes the county's iconic historic plough, the 'Gallows', including its history and manufacture, examples in the museum's collection, and where you can see them being used today. Plus pictures of a Gallows in use at last year's British National Ploughing Championships with expert ploughman Mike Flood.


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 two new DVDs available this Spring!
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  • Heavy Horse World Breeders Directory – now two pages! Locate the breeder of your choice
  • Plus... order an annual subscription to Heavy Horse World for friend or family – just £22 (£24 Europe/£26 Rest of the World)!


Spr_11_image3_250x2082011 National Shire Horse Show, Peterborough – win tickets in Heavy Horse World competition!
Heavy Horse World has 10 pairs of adult tickets to the National Shire Hofrse Show to give away this issue – hurry, the closing date is 10 March. The show is the premier heavy horse event of the year and attracts more than 200 entries and a big crowd of heavy horse enthusiasts to the East of England Showground. This year's show runs for three days, 18-20 March. It opens on Friday 18 March with an auction of Shire horse equipment and memorabilia and the ridden classes will start at 1.00pm. Saturday and Sunday will be packed with in-hand and turnout classes, including the male and female championships. Further information: 0845 600 5445.



Spr_11_image4_250x145Martin Clunes falls for Clydesdales
Actor and horse enthusiast Martin Clunes has bought two Clydesdale foals from top Scottish breeder, Ronnie Black of Cupar, Fife. Named Ronnie and Bruce, the two have impeccable Clydesdale breeding, and are now settling in to their new home on Martin's Dorset farm.



Spr_11_image6_250x169Alistair King remembers Ray Williams and the Moorfield Stud
Alistair takes us back to the days when he first met Ray Williams and eventually bought his mixed leg colt, Moorfield Charles, at auction. The stallion stood at Cotebrook Shire Horse Centre siring a number of prize-winning animals. Alistair was amazed to find some of the century's most important sires in his bloodline. Now Ray's Moorfield Ted and Moorfield Edward both stand at Cotebrook, and their progeny have amassed a vast number of important wins all over the country.




The quest for 'a leg at each corner'

Josephine Roberts describes how her brother Dafydd eventually decided on Comtois horses from France as the ideal draught animal for his North Wales hill farm. Describing how he bought them from the main Comtois breeding region in France, she explains how they have now become regular competitors on the local ploughing circuit, proving to be "quite unfazed by most things".



Other features in this issue include...

  • First Suffolk Horse Foal Show & Sale for 50 years

  • British Percheron Breed Show moves to Suffolk County Show

  • Horse-based community smallholding gets under way in Norfolk

  • John Anderson's Redcastle Brelee Majestic wins at Clydesdale Winter Fair

  • John McDermott becomes SCHHA's Great All-England Horse Ploughing champion for second year

  • Obituaries – including Patrick Flood and Harry Ranson

  • Harness-making – five-day course at Acton Scott Historic Working Farm

  • Mathilda and the vegetable garden – part 1 of Rebecca Laughton's diary about establishing a market garden with her Dales pony

  • Dramatic progress in heavy horse training and qualifications