Posted on September 24th, 2020

Celebrate World Animal Day at Essex Horse Charity


Remus Horse Sanctuary will be opening its gates for only the second time this year on Sunday 4th October to celebrate World Animal Day, coordinated by the Naturewatch Foundation. Visitors, members and supporters are invited to come and meet the 200+ animals and learn about the Sanctuary’s horse welfare programme and the issues that the charity has faced over the past 7 months. 

 Remus Hors Sanctuary is proud to support this global movement to raise the status of animals by using this special day to raise awareness for horse welfare in this country.

The Sanctuary will be open from 1pm to 5pm and pre-booking is essential as Remus will only be selling a limited number of tickets for this event to ensure visitors’ safety and maintain social distancing.

Parking is available on-site, with disabled access, and dogs are welcome on a lead.  Refreshments will be available, including afternoon tea by advance booking.

Admission will be charged at £5 per adult and £2 for children and tickets can be purchased online at: or via telephone on 01277 356191.

Sue Burton, founder of the Sanctuary said, “We have undertaken numerous risk assessments and are confident that we can open safely in October, as we did in September.
“We want both our visitors and team to feel safe, and be safe, and will be operating a one way system on site with plenty of hand sanitizing stations. The event will be a totally outdoor environment with all buildings closed off and out of use.”

 World Animal Day has become a global celebration for all animals and the people who love and respect them.  It’s known on every continent and celebrated in different ways in many countries, with no regard to nationality, religion or political ideology.

The Sanctuary provides rehabilitation and care for around 200 animals, including horses, ponies, donkeys, goats, sheep and cats, and has been doing so since it was founded in 1983.

This Open Day will be a vital source of fundraising for the charity which, like many, had all of its physical fundraising curtailed on 23rd March at the start of lockdown.

Ms Burton says, “We are asking people to purchase a ticket online wherever possible to avoid unnecessary administration in our office – which is already under strain. And we are all looking forward to welcoming visitors to this really special place on a day of international celebration.”


Posted on September 21st, 2020

Liverpool International Horse Show Cancellation Statement

It is with great sadness and regret that Bolesworth Events have taken the difficult decision to cancel Liverpool International Horse Show 2020.

Over the past six months, the team have worked with the M&S Bank Arena to model a series of scenarios that would allow us to deliver a viable model for the indoor show in the current challenging circumstances.

With the health and safety, as well as the welfare of the equestrian community at the heart of our decision making, we must act responsibly. As a result, given the commercial implications and current government guidance regarding social distancing and mass gatherings, it is clear an event of this scale poses far too great a risk to host in what has already been a challenging year.

We appreciate that many riders and supporters will be disappointed by this news and would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone directly involved with the event; our sponsors, visitors, competitors, exhibitors, officials and contractors for their continued support.

Managing Director, Nina Barbour said:
“Since the start of the pandemic, we have been working tirelessly to develop a model for an indoor event.

Having successfully hosted a series of outdoor competitions at Bolesworth over the summer, including the NAF Five Star British Showjumping National Championships, the Al Shira’aa Bolesworth Young Horse Championships and the Al Shira’aa Training Show Summer Series, we know it is possible to host competition safely behind closed doors when using an outdoor venue. The key challenge has been to transfer this model into an indoor environment with the public in attendance; it simply hasn’t been feasible from a health and safety or commercial point of view.

 Earlier this year, we hosted ‘Equestrian Relief’; bringing together the equestrian community to raise money in support of our NHS heroes. Having raised over £300,000, we very much hoped that Liverpool would be a celebration of this campaign and herald the end of what has been a challenging year for so many, and we are currently scoping alternative ways of achieving this.

 In order to support our riders and partners, we are exploring the feasibility to develop a 2* International Show, which will strictly be behind closed doors in line with current Government guidelines, for competitors only, on the same dates as originally planned for the Liverpool Show (31st December 2020 – 3rd January 2021).

 As with all our events this year; we are keen to support the UK equestrian industry back into competition at the top level and it feels only right we continue this work and support our elite riders as they prepare for Tokyo 2021. We aim to better understand the viability of running this event by the start of October, with further information released as soon as possible.

 We wish everyone well in these uncertain times and look forward to welcoming you all to a truly incredible show in 2021.”

 Liverpool International Horse Show will return in 2021, taking place Friday 31st December – Monday 3rd January.

Posted on September 14th, 2020


The Organising Committee of Olympia, The London International Horse Show announced today that with great regret it has taken the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Show.

Over the last few months, the Olympia organising team has been looking at multiple scenarios to try to stage the indoor Show with the health and welfare of everyone involved at the heart of that decision-making process. Reluctantly, it has been concluded that it is not possible to run the event in December 2020 given the commercial implications of the government’s social distancing guidelines and the numerous additional Covid-19 safety requirements.

Unfortunately, this means that the Olympia feature events, including the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup, the Olympia Grand Prix, the Puissance, the FEI Dressage World Cup and the FEI Driving World Cup qualifiers will not be held in 2020, along with the international displays and all of the traditional Olympia festive entertainment.

Simon Brooks-Ward, Show Director, said: “My father, together with Clarion Events, started the Olympia Horse Show in 1972 and it has run every year since, meaning that this year would have been our 49th show. My brothers and I have attended every Show and therefore I completely empathise with the sadness felt by our visitors, who will not be cheering, laughing, and clapping in the Grand Hall this year. I also understand the disappointment felt by our competitors, officials, sponsors and particularly our trade stand exhibitors, who would have been particularly looking forward to the Christmas boost that Olympia gives them.

“Olympia holds a special place in the equestrian world’s hearts. Generations of families have held their Christmas parties at the Show and many will not be able to imagine a Christmas without a visit to Olympia. However, we are looking forward to being back in 2021, with a bumper Show to celebrate our 50th anniversary.

“I am extremely grateful for the supportive messages we have received from the equestrian community over the summer and am only sorry that we are unable to be with them at Olympia this Christmas.”

Posted on September 11th, 2020

Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials moves to Burnham Market – for one year

Following the Covid-19 related cancellation of this autumn’s Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials, Musketeer Event Management is delighted to have been able to step in to run both the CCI4* short format 8/9-year-old-championship, a stand alone CCI4*Short and the CCI4* long format normally hosted by Blenheim.

The Barefoot Retreats Burnham Market International will run from 17th – 20th September, a welcome replacement for Norfolk’s covid-cancelled spring International fixture. It will be the first time that the venue has hosted a four-star long format event – which means competitors will be greeted by a number of changes.

Most notably, due to the need for an extended cross country track – a requirement for a long format four star – the cross country start has moved to the normal dressage field. The track runs down through the normal stables field (the stables have been moved), through the main arena and over the drive to join the regular course. Long format riders will also perform their dressage tests in the main arena.

The calibre of entries at the spring Barefoot Retreats Burnham Market International is always top class, and this ‘stand in’ fixture is no different. Entries include the current World number one Oliver Townend, who has an astonishly successful record at Burnham Market; reigning World Champion Ros Canter; Ros’ gold medal winning team mates Tom McEwen, Gemma Tattersall and Piggy March – who of course was also the 2019 Badminton winner; 2019 Burghley winner Pippa Funnell, past World and European Champion Zara Tindall and eventing icon William Fox-Pitt.

Riders from 18 nations will be in action, including Kiwi double act Tim and Jonelle Price, Australia’s Sam Griffiths, Japan’s Toshiyuki Tanaka and Ryuzo Kitajima, China’s Alex Hua Tian and Sweden’s Ludwig Svennerstal.

Musketeer Event Management is also hosting its usual lower level national event, Barefoot Retreats Burnham Market (2), the weekend before the star studded international.

In accordance with current government regulations both events will be run ‘behind closed doors’ and are NOT open to spectators. However Horse & Country TV will be live streaming the International classes on both Saturday and Sunday, 19th – 20th.

Posted on September 10th, 2020

British Equestrian Update: new legal restrictions for England

The government has recently announced new restrictions in England which limit gatherings to a maximum of six people, enforceable by law, which come into effect on Monday 14th September. While this has implications for day-to-day life, British Equestrian has had confirmation via Sport England that equestrian sport and activity taking place in organised conditions under each governing body’s published ‘return to play’ protocols and related guidance, can continue without observing the new restricted numbers.

Riders, drivers and vaulters meeting for informal equestrian activities such as hacking must legally abide by the restriction of six people or fewer as of Monday 14th September in England.

Also coming into law is the requirement for businesses to record customer, staff and visitor contact details to support the NHS Test and Trace programme. Most equestrian centres, venues and operatives should have instigated this within their ‘return to play’ plans, but those who haven’t been must now put a recording program in place in order to comply with the law. Data should be held for 21 days, then safely destroyed, and should be handled in accordance with GDPR.

Currently, there are no changes to numbers who can gather in Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales from those previously published.

British Equestrian’s Head of Participation David Butler commented; “We’ve worked closely with our member bodies to get them prepared for returning to action safely, and most are back up and running under COVID protocols. Having stringent plans in place was vital, but even more so with these new restrictions being made law because our plans mean that activity can safely continue. I’d urge all equestrian businesses, particularly in England at present, to be extra vigilant and rigorously ensure the guidance is strictly adhered to, as well as health and hygiene measures. It’s easy to become complacent, but this change reminds us that coronavirus is still very much with us and we must all play our part in complying with the guidance to minimise the COVID risk when taking part in equestrian activity.”

Helpful links

Posted on August 10th, 2020

Dressage Anywhere Introduces Young Horse Classes

Calling all 4, 5 and 6-year-old horses! Dressage Anywhere is running Young Horse classes online during August.

Horses will compete within their own age and in the comfort of their own home and be judged by top professional British Dressage Young Horse judges. Great for building up confidence before trying to qualify for Young Horse Championships or just to enhance training.

Trainer and producer of young horses and BD Training Director, Paul Hayler, who is judging the 4 and 5 year olds feels this is a great opportunity to have horses assessed by professionals: “It will enable riders to pinpoint their strengths and areas that may need further work, all without having the stress of travelling.”

Matt Hicks, another young horse specialist, says “Online competing and training is a great way of getting expert advice from judges to whom you may not normally have access, especially during these difficult times. It is not instead of going out, but it is an added tool in assessing your horse’s training.”

To find out more and enter, head over to

Posted on August 4th, 2020

Norwich High School win at the British Showjumping National Championships

Norwich High School take home the Just for Schools 90cm Team title

It was an elated team from Norwich High School that took their lap of honour at the NAF Five Star British Showjumping National Championships recently when they won the 90cm Just For Schools Team Final.

The team made up Tilly Marcantonio, Kate Barrett and Bethany Barrett all jumped clear in at least one of their rounds to pull their team three fences ahead of the Berkhamstead Team who took 2nd.  This was the first time that Norwich High School have claimed the trophy making their win all the more special for them when they finished on just a total of 8 penalties across the two rounds with Berkhamstead finishing on 20.

The Championships run between 3rd – 11th August at Bolesworth.

Posted on July 30th, 2020

Mounted games and polocrosse given green light to resume

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has given the green light for the team sports of mounted games and polocrosse to resume, following their approval of plans submitted by British Equestrian.

Equestrian team sports were halted in March of this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

On 10th July 2020, DCMS released the Return to Recreational Sport Framework, which contained guidance designed to minimise the transmission risk of COVID-19 (coronavirus) during team sports and to enable participants to make informed decisions about their own risk. Using this framework, British Equestrian has worked with the Mounted Games Association of Great Britain, the United Kingdom Polocrosse Association and The Pony Club to produce bespoke action plans and risk assessments for mounted games and polocrosse.

Each risk assessment identifies ways to lessen the risk of COVID-19 transmission and to reduce the number of people in the vicinity of the field of play. This then allows event organisers to make modifications to the activity or rules of the sports as required.

A Return to Equestrian Team Sports Action Plan has also been produced by British Equestrian and the member bodies, which details a standard approach to the management of events in England, including team training sessions and competitions, for equestrian team sports. This action plan will sit alongside DCMS’s Return to Recreational Sport Framework, which must also be implemented by organisers, and government social distancing guidelines.

“It’s great news that these sports have been given the go-ahead to resume,” commented British Equestrian’s Head of Participation, David Butler. “We are very grateful for DCMS’s decision, and I’d like to thank our member bodies for the hard work they put into preparing these action plans and risk assessments. Participants, officials, volunteers and other stakeholders can now return to the sports they love, happy in the knowledge that everything possible has been done to keep them safe.”

Posted on July 17th, 2020

BD Winter Championships are back on!

The NAF Five Star Winter Championships and Petplan Equine Area Festival Championships, due to take place at Hartpury in April, was one of the first large dressage events to be cancelled when the coronavirus pandemic took hold in Britain back in March. However, after working closely with the show organisers, venue, competitors and officials, British Dressage is delighted to announce that riders, horses, owners and connections will not miss their opportunity to compete at Hartpury and the revised championships are now set to run from 17th to 23rd August 2020.

All competitors who had previously qualified for the two championships have been contacted and surveyed, with an overwhelming 75% indicating they would still want to compete at a rescheduled COVID-secure show.  With our loyal members onside, plans were immediately set in motion to get the championships back on track, albeit in a different format from usual.

Long standing event organisers Show Direct, managed by Kelvin Bywater, will oversee the seven day show in line with British Dressage COVID-19 protocols.  The competition element of the show will take place outdoors in the 60 x 80m international arena with Andrews Bowen surfaces.  Two arenas will run consecutively side by side, except while freestyle classes are in action.

The safety of all participants remains of paramount importance, so the championships will be run ‘behind closed doors’ to keep numbers on site to a minimum, in accordance with social distancing, public health and hygiene restrictions. There will be no spectators, sponsors, trade stands or hospitality on site, although competitors will still be able to bring one additional person per horse.

The BD and Show Direct teams will do their utmost to still promote a championship atmosphere for competitors and ensure that the achievements of competitors are recognised and rewarded in the same way as normal.  Those who can’t visit will be kept up to date with free to view live stream of both arenas provided by Horse & Country, plus a full news service and social media coverage from British Dressage.  There will be unmounted prize presentations and photographer on site to capture the championship experience.

Both NAF and Petplan Equine have pledged their full support to the rescheduled championships and wanted competitors to have the chance to take up their hard earned qualification and ride down that centreline at Hartpury.  All the original classes are included in the revised timetable, with the exception of the freestyle elements for the Prix St Georges Gold and Intermediate I championships, as the gala evenings unfortunately won’t be able to take place.

A dedicated microsite to support the Winter Championships is now live and will be updated regularly as further plans are finalised over coming weeks. The full competition schedule will be released early next week and entries will open for a two week window before they close in early August.  Times will be published on 13 August, with the show commencing four days later on Monday 17th August.

Stabling will be available on site as well as a limited catering provision from external mobile units for competitors, connections and officials.

British Dressage Chief Executive Jason Brautigam commented; “Getting a rescheduled Winter Championships back in the calendar was always a priority for us, as part of our sport resumption plans, as long as the competitors wanted it – and they told us they certainly did!  Running a show this size in the current circumstances will be a challenge, but we’re confident that we have robust plans in place to ensure everything runs smoothly and efficiently.  Add to that the management experience of Show Direct and first class facilities at Hartpury and we’re confident that the show can operate safely within government restrictions.  It will be a very different championships, that’s for sure, but after months of lockdown the chance to compete and celebrate success will be as special as ever.”

Show Direct Managing Director, Kelvin Bywater added; “The logistical task of preparing for a 38-class championships in a vastly reduced timeframe is well underway, but we’ll need to work collectively and with a degree of flexibility – that’s the BD and Show Direct teams, as well as the judges, officials, volunteers and competitors.  Most importantly, we’ll all have to play our part, keep to the guidelines and follow the protocols in place – it’ll be a long week of teamwork for everyone involved, but we’re looking forward to it.”

Posted on July 15th, 2020

Redwings Horse Sanctuary sets dates for the reopening of two of its visitor centres

After careful consideration, Redwings Caldecott and Redwings Aylsham, both in Norfolk, will be the first of the charity’s centres to welcome back visitors, on a trial basis.

Redwings Caldecott will reopen on Saturday 25th July, followed by Redwings Aylsham on Saturday 8th August, with safety measures in place to ensure adherence to the latest Government guidance and to protect both staff and visitors, including a new ticketed entry system.

Lynn Cutress, Redwings’ Chief Executive, said: “We’re delighted to be able to announce the reopening of two of our centres. Having to close our doors to visitors, while the right thing to do at the time, significantly impacted our ability to fundraise – a devastating blow for a charity 100% funded by donations from the public.

“This next step has taken much careful consideration and we thank all our supporters for their patience while we’ve decided on the best way forward. We understand some may be disappointed that we are not reopening all our centres at this time, but we felt it was prudent and manageable to trial our new safety measures on a small-scale for now.

“Access to some visitor facilities will remain limited for the time being, however our centres still provide a valuable outdoor space to enjoy time with the whole family and a great chance to see Redwings’ work in action – as well as our beautiful rescued residents of course – so we’re very excited to able to offer this opportunity again.”

The new measures being put in place at Redwings Caldecott and Redwings Aylsham include:

Opening hours being reduced to Saturdays and Sundays only, between 10.30am and 3pm.

Visitors must book a time slot for their arrival to ensure the number of people at the centres remains at a safe level at all times.

Tickets can be booked here: Redwings Caldecott –, Redwings Aylsham –

  • Entry remains free but donations would be welcome towards the care of Redwings’ rescued residents.
  • There will be clearly marked one-way routes around the centres to help visitors maintain social distancing.
  • Cafes and play areas will remain closed for now, while there will be phased access to the gift shops and a takeaway drinks and snacks service introduced over the coming weeks.

Visitors are encouraged to visit Redwings’ website ( for the latest news on the available facilities before travelling.

The charity’s centres in Essex, Scotland and Warwickshire will remain closed for the time being. For anyone not able to visit its Norfolk centres, there are still plenty of ways people can show their support, including donating to Redwings’ coronavirus appeal or sponsoring one of its Adoption Star horses and donkeys.