Photos from the Agility on 3rd June.
“I think we should do something different for Christmas next year” Kay said to Roy!
“I know” he replied ” We could do a pantomime”. Kay laughed and the conversation passed on to other things. fast forward a few days when Jane and Kay were having a chat ” Roy thinks we should do a pantomime in December 2017″ said Kay. ” Oh wow – yes lets, what a fabulous idea” says Jane!!!!
That is how in December 2016 an idea became a reality.
On 30th December at Kings Equestrian Centre in Bromyard, Herefordshire a spectacle was produced that had to be seen to be believed.
Jane, Kay and Roy had put together a pantomime – loosely based on the story of Cinderella starring most of the Herefordshire members and their equines in some capacity.
Katy Williams our beautiful Cinders with her two Buttons (One her Shetland Pony the other Neville Jones) sobbed heartily when her Ugly Sisters sent her a text telling her they had burned her invite to the ball. Stephen Pond as Stephanie and Kevin Webb as Antonia were accompanied by the most wicked of all stepmothers the gorgeous Helen Manns.
The Fairy Godmother (Jane Friend) was spectacularly dressed with a wonderful winged carriage pulled by her Dartmoor pony Rosie. Jane had been responsible for most of the scriptwriting and had also persuaded her lovely daughter Alex to be our Narrator.
The Prince (Katya Jones) and Dandini (Tina LLoyd) were mounted on Roy’s two huge black Friesian cross mares and made a stirring entrance to a trumpet fanfare.
It is impossible to mention everyone who took part by name but some of the highlights of the show were provided by Kay and Bess, Pat Dutson and Rosie and Jane and her Rosie doing a musical drive to Footloose in Purple wearing red hats (As per the poem). Followed rapidly by Jane and Pat’s dance with the spotty dogs!!
Roy was on fine form as the worst chef anyone ever employed- ably assisted by Shaun his sous chef and Peter the Donkey with Tony the enormous turkey!
Roy was also our coachman and provided a spectacular (if somewhat late) coach for Cinders to go to the ball in.
Ernie the fastest milkman in the west was sung with gusto by the audience when Roy drove Peter in to the market scene (nearly taking off as they came over the step into the arena). Peter always performs with joy and enthusiasm and the audience loved it.
The cast of extras were wonderful providing us with bears, villagers, market traders and guests at the ball. All beautifully dressed and with ponies all suitably attired as well. The palace guards(Dan and Matt) who moved all the scenery in and out were smartly dressed in red and made sure the trees, columns and Kitchen scenery were where they should be.
Everyone had made so much effort and although we had only managed four part rehearsals it all came together surprisingly well.
A mention has to made of the Cinderella Coach cake made by Kevin Webb and raffled on the entry tickets, and to Robbie Burns and Bill Walton who provided special effects and music throughout the performance – mostly on time!!
With thanks to everyone who took part and who came to watch us. To all family members who were drafted in in some capacity to help, holding ponies, dogs and donkeys – they were all magnificent and we really could not have done it without them.
The weather was kind to us and it was dry and not too cold. The cafe kept everyone well fed and watered and the ponies and humans all behaved with enthusiasm and humour.
A wonderful experience – but we have all agreed only once every five years!
Kay Walton AC, Roy Moore AAC and Jane Friend AAC for the British Driving Society Herefordshire
Some pictures from ‘Cinderella ‘ on 30th December. Great day all went really well. Oh yes it did!!!!
Should you wish to purchase copies (downloads, prints etc) see: Chris Bell Photography
Pics from our Taster day yesterday. 6 ‘Tasters’ and lovely weather made for a fun day with everyone having a go in the cones course. Many thanks to Pat Dutson and Jane Friend who joined Kay to give everyone who came the opportunity to see what Carriage driving is all about.
Report from Jane Friend.
Yet again Kay organised the weather at Castle Walton for the training day. The day was well attended by a lively group of enthusiastic newcomers who we will look forward to seeing more of as they progress with various projects. Besides covering the basic information about horses, harness, carriages, safety and much more besides we agreed that here in Hereford driving offered something for everyone.
I hope people will always keep asking questions and discussing their experiences as learning about carriage driving is an ongoing activity. Our Agility event in September was looked forward as a springboard for the young horse, the novice (horse and handler) and the “can we do it?” .
The day finished with the opportunity to have the carriage experience, wonderful Bess took great care of first time Whips while Charlie and Rosie brought smiles and laughter to both backsteppers and passengers as they negotiated cones.
On Saturday March 11th Hereford BDS organised for the first time a Master Class at Kings Equestrian Centre Bromyard.
My follow up is significant having been closely involved with the organisation of the event, having been a ‘student’ and having the opportunity to listen to the behind the scene ‘gossip’
The extensive planning was managed by Mr Kay Walton AC for Hereford. The aim of the event was to be both educational for participants and interesting for spectators. All those who have been intrepid enough to organise events will be able to imagine the hard work before and on the day, sleepless nights and days filled with anxiety. At a time when carriage driving events are struggling for interest and lacking participants to run this new venture was undertaken with trepidation.
We were delighted and would especially like to thank Gary Docking who agreed to be our ‘Master’ of the day. The interest was immediate and entries quickly filled available space. The enthusiasm for help especially with novice horses resulted in two sessions for this group. The classes also included Novice Whip, Improving horse and Whip, and an amalgamation Show/Presentation and finally the multiples Class. Long before the day we were full and unable to accept late entries this being something of a novelty in the driving world.
Participants were asked to complete and return not only an entry form but a profile supplying background information about their whole turnout – Whip, groom, carriage and horse. This proved too much a challenge for a few! but it enabled Mr Docking to help answer specific issues and aspirations.
No pony or whip went away without having learnt something he managed Shetlands, Welsh, Arab and cobs, from the novice Whips to the very experienced. Each entrant was given individual attention with good humour and astute insight. As he assisted our young driver member his aside comment to my little Dartmoor Mare that “Patience is a virtue!” was spot on! He gave much helpful advice clearly many of us still had lots to learn to achieve good rein contact and explained how, if we can get it right, it will help many difficulties. He gave advice on training for all aspects of performance ranging from good outline, correct bend, impulsion and how to pacify the over enthusiastic.
In each class Mr Docking entertained and educated with the skill that could only come from a lifetime of varied experience. There was no aspect of carriage driving including carriages, harness and outfits all came under scrutiny and constructive and positive advice was given. We were pleased that the substantial number of spectators remained engrossed and many stayed throughout the day. Even the more critical members in the audience agreed he spoke with great wisdom.
Turkey & Tinsel Show held at Kings Equestrian, Bromyard on Sunday 27th November 2017
Great day had by all and thanks to Stephen Pond for judging the five classes. Highlight of the afternoon was Roy Moore Driving Peter the Donkey in the Musical drive.
Sorry for the poor quality of the photos, they were taken on my phone and all a bit blurred due to the cold!!
CLASS 1 “Christmas Challenges”
1st – Matt & Jane Allcoat with Merlin (Long rein)
2nd – Tony Edwards with Trevor (Lead)
3rd – Tina Lloyd with Pixie (Long rein)
4th – Helen Manns with Pixie (Long rein)
5th – Julie Carpenter with Dandy (Long rein)
CLASS 2 “Agility Challenges”
1st Matt & Jane Allcoat with Merlin
2nd Helen Manns with Pixie
3rd Jane Friend with Lofty
Long Rein or Lead
1st Julie Carpenter with Dandy
2nd Katie Williams with Barney
3rd Tina Lloyd with Pixie
4th Jenny Newman with Percy
5th Sally Ripp with Maddy
6th Tony Edwards with Trevor
CLASS 3 “Christmas Cones”
1st Roy Moore with Lofty
2nd Helen Manns with Pixie
3rd Jane Friend with Lofty
4th Dave Davies with Sparky
Long Rein or Lead
1st Tony Edwards with Trevor
2nd Katie Williams with Barney
3rd Julie Carpenter with Dandy
4th Tina Lloyd with Pixie
5th Jane Allcoat with Merlin
6th Matt with Merlin
CLASS 4 “Christmas Fancy Dress”
1st Dave & Judy Davies & Doggies driving Sparky
Other Entrants were:
Helen Manns with Pixie
Matt & Jane Allcoat & Merlin
Tina Lloyd with Pixie
Katie Williams with Barney
Liz & June with Alfie the Donkey
Roy Moore with Peter the Donkey
CLASS 5 “Christmas Musical Drive”
1st Helen Manns with Pixie
2nd Roy Moore with Peter the Donkey
3rd Jane Allcoat with Merlin
4th Matt with Merlin
5th Dave Davie with Sparky
Thanks to Brigit Graham for the photos.
Contact Brigit if you are interested in the original images. Email her on Brigitgraham@aol.com
Well Croft 2016 has been and gone!
The morning started in beautiful autumn sunshine and a magnificent view over the Herefordshire countryside enjoying coffee and cakes – perfect! Soup and buns were served later in the day.
Twelve competitors from seven counties, fourteen horses and ponies were fantastic. The only people that were even better were the volunteers that helped to make the day successful – supporters, stewards and judges. This year we set up a carriage driving Centre/Gazebo as an Information centre.
The competition started with two presentations in front of the castle our judges Amy Bracey and Stephen Pond were kept hard at work all morning. There were two routes, modern vehicles with either a horse (class 1) or a pony (class2) again tackled the old carriage ride through the park beautiful off road pathways but nicknamed The Mountain Route! For traditional vehicles and smaller ponies a gentler drive around Herefordshire lanes, to my amazement they both measured out at the same 8 miles.
Last year we thought the difficulties were too easy so this year they were more interesting. Having looked at the overall marks The Brain Teaser, was clearly the easiest for the horses but was the most challenging for the human brain! The Herefordshire Cider Drinker was more difficult for the horses but approached with more enthusiasm by the whips! Should we perhaps reflect on this!!!
Kay Walton filled a short delay in the last results coming through to inform the spectators about the amazing horses and people standing awaiting the presentation. They (the horses!) ranged from 10 to 16 hh plus, they came with many backgrounds the family pet, the show and from horse trials even one from the plastic shop! She mention the range of participants the young (two junior whips) and the not so young, also the diversity of the range of carriages from the late nineteenth century to the twenty first century.
Surely it was a showcase for this type of competition
Congratulations to the winners of each class, Faith Saunders, Robbyn McClements, Felicity Stubbs and Marian Dunevein. Competitors have their individual results but this year just completing was a win.
Brigit Graham has again taken some fabulous picture and can be seen on her Facebook page and she can be contacted Brigitgraham@aol.com