Vikki’s Blog 6th September 2013

Gosh it’s going to be a lengthy blog as I’ve so much to tell you all.

130906_beachWe are currently winging our way up to Scotland, a mixed party, Les and I, two dogs and 1 Swift! Becky brought us the Swift 2 weeks ago, it looked very sorry for itself and I couldn’t quite put my finger on what was wrong with it, but it’s head looked like one of those nodding dogs in the back of a car! After a few days, it didn’t look much better, its head had gone like an owl, only permanently looking backwards, not good. On a hunch I suggested we try it on antibiotics and a wormer, much to everyone’s amusement at Brodies, we picked up the meds and started it on its course. Anyway, it’s thriving and now mostly looks ahead and is staying fairly straight. The outcome is that we have a Swift to feed every few hours, so it’s had to come with us. It was difficult enough to find a hotel that took dogs (courtesy eventually of Dog’s Digs), I haven’t dared said we have a Swift as well.

Anyway, back to the story of why we are rushing up to Scotland… My gorgeous, beautiful lorry which has served me so dutifully for many years has eventually been sold.

Its been very emotional saying goodbye, but they’ve promised to love and treasure her and they are an eventing family and the father is a vet, so I think she’ll have a happy home. As I am now lorry less, we have been trawling the Internet and of course the two lorries we like are at opposite ends of the country, so we are hoofing it up to Scotland first of all to look at a very smart Iveco, 7.5 ton. I will need to be very careful not to get caught speeding – no more 40 miles an hour on A roads and no limiter, steady on!!

We’re just passing the Angel of the North, only another 200 miles…

130906_donkeysIt’s been very eventful summer at the farm with wildlife, Joe’s been bringing me a hedgehog every night, not always the same one, they love the food I’ve got them, though each to their own, it smells frightful. We have lots of baby frogs and toads in the garden and Katie brought me a wonderful one eyed toad yesterday!

By the time this goes to print, the baby Barn Owl will have fledged, it’s the first that’s been born in our nesting box and you’ll see from the photo he’s a beauty. The Nottinghamshire wildlife trust man came to ring him last Wednesday and we’ve only had 14 recorded born in Nottinghamshire this year.

We had another Swift in with us for 3 weeks earlier in the year, happy days, we were able to release him, a lovely sight to see him soaring overhead, fully restored and healthy, as we shouted our goodbyes and good luck messages, he was soon joined by half a dozen others and they continued to soar round us overhead for about 20 minutes, with their piercing calls filling the air.



We’re celebrating my nephew Luke getting married at the end of the month in France. It’s in a beautiful chateau and we’re really looking forward to it. Jenny will be on duty while we’re gone, hopefully there’ll only be the dogs, the canaries, the horses, the cats, chickens, fish hmm I guess she’ll be busy!




Student Progress

130906_rosettesKatie McMahon

Another result! Katie passed her Health and Safety exam.

Julie Frizzell and Stan

For the Para Equestrian Open Winter Championships at Hartpury places are limited. Therefore, Julie and Stan did fantastically well when in their first Northern region para test at Bishop Burton, they were placed 1st in their first test and 3rd with 62.9% in harder, second test. Terrific results Julie as now playing with the big boys!

Tracy O’Connar

Major spook on 1st test cost them dearly, but they still gained a creditable 4th place with 64.4%. Won the second test with 73.04%.

Last weekend, another win!! Then second, again, really good scores! Tracey’s on a roll….. Whoop whoop!

Sue Fynney and Higgins

She’s just done her first intro a test and got 63.91 and came 4th.

Anne Marie Smith with Ozzie

Ozzie’s first test 69.1% Anne Marie happy, happy, happy!

Georgina Bird

Georgina’s test results over the last few weeks. 11/08 elms farm, Chris Pappa 68.33 2nd prelim 14. 11/08 elms farm, Julie Corrigan 68.33 1st prelim 13. 24/08 Prof equine Ruby Wetherall 67.9 3rd novice 28. 24/08 prof equine judge not sure 69.5 5th prelim 7. This weekend we didn’t do brilliantly but were placed in each test. Georgina is going to send you the videos as we didn’t think that her tests were that bad. 31/8 Royal London prelim 12 Susan bullock 66 4th. Prelim 13 Ann brown 65.8 final qualifier 8th out of 22 and the final prelim 18 Sharon Marshall 66.2 7th out of 18.

Mandy Denley and Binks……..

Continue to do well and are doing lots of hard work prior to the Nationals Championships in September at Stoneleigh. We wish them every success.

Jennifer Baker

Achieved her Stage 4… WHAT A RESULT!! Well done Jennifer, you should be feeling very, very proud of yourself.

Isla Oprych

Isla passed her BHS Stage 3, again huge congratulations, a fabulous result.

Karen Dodwell

P14 67.50 N28…62.92!! Our 1st 2 BD points! 1.9.13

Helen Turkdogen and Leon

63% (2nd) and 68% (1st). Four eights in test 2

Katie Lovell

Hi Vikki, appears you have worked a minor miracle – Katie and Blue in equal first after dressage at Richmond on 28.5! One down in sj to finish 4th – over the moon. Thank you so much.

Watch out for future blogs including; judging in Jersey, Assessing in Scotland for British Dressage Scotland, Judging the BYRDS under 25’s Championships at Sheepgate and lots, lots more.

Have A Go Day – 26th October 2013

Brooksby College Equestrian Centre – 26th October 2013
Brooksby, Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, LE14 2LJ

Poster – Have a Go Day – 26th October 2013

Are you competing in Unaffiliated Dressage?
Have you thought you might like to join British Dressage (BD)?
Do you want to receive training from a dedicated coach?
Would you like feedback on your test riding and tips on how to improve your marks & confidence from a trained BD judge?
Would you like to know more about BD and what’s on offer to our members?
If you answered “YES” to any of the above then this day is for YOU!
Open to all levels of riders, horse & ponies

The Day Will Consist of:-

  • Test Riding Practice – with a British Dressage Listed Judge who will give you tips and advice
  • A talk on how to get started with British Dressage, opportunities for members and how to get involved with BD Northern
  • A Chance to meet other riders wanting to make that step into Affiliated Competitions
  • Ride at BD competition venues and meet some of the BD Northern organisers and staff
  • A goody bag, rosette, certificate, training voucher, discounts & Lots more!
  • A great membership offer ONLY available for those who take part in the Have a Go Days

To book a place please complete application form [click here to download] and send with full payment, Cheques made payable to British Dressage,
Please send a cheque to:
Sarah Huntridge
PO BOX 783, Harrogate HG1 9RR
To send Sarah an email – Click Here
Phone: 01765 676373

BHS First Aid Courses 2013

22-23 October 2013 – Two Day Initial Course

24 October 2013 – One Day Refresher Course

Applications to the British Horse Society via the web site

The closing date for course applications will be 10 working days prior to the date of the course, at which point the course will be confirmed or cancelled depending on their being sufficient numbers for the course to go ahead.

The course presenter will arrive at approximately 9.15am to set up the course ready for a 9.30am start and courses will be finish by 4.30pm each day.

22/10/2013 09.15am Two Days £111 COLLEGE FARM EQUESTRIAN CENTRE

24/10/2013 09.15am One Day £80/£68(ROI) COLLEGE FARM EQUESTRIAN CENTRE

The Development of Teaching Flying Changes

Tuesday October 22 2013, 10:00am – 12:30pm at Brooksby College, Melton Mowbray, Leicester, LE14 2LJ

Poster-The Development of Teaching Flying Changes

Conducted by British Dressage List 1 Judge Jane Peberdy This will be a practical day with riders from Elementary through to PSG level.

Jane will explain the training of simple changes through to flying changes at each level and what the judge is looking for.

The lecture is open to all who have a keen interest in Dressage.

£15 for BD Listed Judges and Members £20 for Non Members including Associate Members.

Light refreshments will be provided.

Applications to Vikki Hayton Tel: 01777 870 886. Mobile: 07860 276 578
Cheques payable to British Dressage

DVD Evening – Cherry Elvin Understanding Flying Changes

Tuesday 15th October 2013 7pm – 9pm at College Farm Equestrian Centre, Tuxford, Nottingham, NG22 0GT

Poster – Understanding Flying Changes

Conducted by British Dressage List 2 Judge Cherry Elvin
This will be an informal discussion group where by participants can gain knowledge and understanding of the topic using footage from BD competitions.
Participants will be able to watch Simple & Flying changes and discuss what the judge is looking for, how and why the marks are rewarded at a verity of levels from Elementary level upwards.
The lecture is open to all who have a keen interest in Dressage including riders, coaches & judges.
£10 for BD Listed Judges and Members
£12 for Non Members including Associate Members.
Applications to Vikki Hayton Tel: 01777 870 886. Mobile: 07860 276 578
Cheques made payable to British Dressage

DVD Evening – Cherry Elvin

Monday 12th August 2013 7pm – 9pm at College Farm Equestrian Centre, Tuxford, Nottingham, NG22 0GT

EC with Cherry Elvin.
Theme – Understanding Flying Changes.
This will be an informal discussion group where by participants can gain knowledge and understanding of the topic using footage from BD competitions.

£10 BD Listed Judges & Members, £12 Non Members inc Associate.

Applications to Vikki Hayton Tel: 01777 870 886. Mobile: 07860 276 578
Cheques made payable to British Dressage

DIY Livery Spaces

We have 2 DIY Livery spaces here at College Farm EC, we’ve always only offered full livery in the past, but we are looking to recruit 2 DIY liveries. Lots of assistance, reasonable rates, good facilities.

Tel. 07860 2176578 or 01777 870886

Aimee and Martin’s Wedding Saturday 18th May 2013

Aimmee and Martin WeddingThis is the second family wedding we’ve enjoyed at All Saint’s Church here in our beautiful village of West Markham. Despite our concerns, the weather held and although the sun wasn’t shining, it didn’t actually rain thank goodness, although there were some wonderful brollies and matching wellington boots all lined up at the ready! The flowers were very traditional, blush pink, old fashioned tea roses, thistles, herbs, daisies and night scented stocks filled the church with their heady aroma. Ours is an exquisite church, steeped in history and there was an air of excitement as we waited for the bride to arrive. The pews were lined with family and friends, the girls chatting animatedly in excited whispers, their hats and fascinators of all colours, shapes and sizes bobbing up and down and seeming to have a life all of their own. After a few nervous glances, and a rather worried looking Gee, the sound system eventually burst into life and the music heralded the arrival of the bridal party, Martin who had looked very pale and nervous got a bit of colour back, Sue (Aimee’s mother) looked fabulous in a black and white outfit which really suited her and the bridesmaids (Victoria, Katie and Natalie, Aimee’s sister) were in elegant, dark blue, satin and organza dresses. Aimee however, quite rightly stole the show, she looked stunning in a blush beige, full length lace dress and matching veil, she was accompanied by her very proud father Barry with not a blush in sight, he looked very happy but actually more ashen than beige!! Words ‘warm seat and paper in hand’ come to mind and I don’t mean his armchair and speech!

The wedding service was beautiful and expertly delivered by our wonderful vicar, Colin Wall, who manages to put everyone at ease with his charming sense of humour and despite Martin being a bit keen and jumping the gun with his “I Do” the ceremony went without a hitch!

As the newly weds were carefully driven back to the reception by cousin Chris Hewgill in his Model A Ford I couldn’t help thinking as they went down the cherry tree lined avenue to Aimee’s home, where the reception was to be held, it looked very appropriate with the cherry blossom falling onto their car like confetti, just like it had on the church steps as they left.

Lancaster Bomber

So, feeling pensive, after a very busy weekend here in West Markham with the wedding on Saturday and the Lancaster Bomber flying over yesterday to commemorate the memorial in the Mausoleum, I couldn’t help thinking what a great privilege it is to live in this wonderful village……it’s not so much its beauty, it’s much more than that, it’s the easy chat and jokes with our lovely neighbours, catching up with those who we haven’t seen for a few weeks, the DVD which recorded the proceedings yesterday which turned up on my desk this morning (thank you whoever that was) it is having a sense of belonging to a community, with everyone having a job to do and quietly getting on with it, not seeking any praise or reward, save that of knowing that they ‘they did their bit’, just as with the wedding, the family all pulling together as one life force and as a result, something truly memorable and remarkable happens.