Monday November 19, 2018
DC’s Monthly Updates

Monthly newsletters from the DC are sent to all members on or around the 15th of every month with links to the relevant places on the website:-

October 2018

Jumps at Alden Farm

A set of the branch show jumps is currently being kept at Alden Farm, Upton for upcoming combined training and show jump rallies.  The jumps are being kept out on an all weather arena and are now available to hire for private sessions, with or without a trainer.  The cost is £15.00/hour for one or two ponies/horses (one to jump at a time) which is being divided between the branch and the venue.  The facility is also available in the evenings with flood lights for which there will be an additional £2 charge.  Anyone interested in booking should contact Lisa Heneghan lheneghan@btinternet.com .  Users must have either an adult or trainer present.

Hunting

Pony Club was orignally founded to teach the children of farmers and landowners how to ride well enough to hunt, and it is great that we maintain such strong links to the hunt to this day. There are a few more opportunities for Autumn Hunting with the Old Berkshire Hunt before the season starts on 3rd November, with special rates for OBHPC members. Please contact Vanessa Kilgour for details, venues or to be put in touch with a hunting mentor: vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk or 07775558673 

Horse of the Year Show

Well done to Sophie Styles for being awarded Home Produced Champion in the Equissage Part Bred ridden class at HOYS, and to OBHPC Instructor and ex-member Alfie Bradstock for being joint winner of the Puissance on one of the horses he brought to show us at Senior Camp.

Area 9 Rallies

For members already competing confidently at Pony Club Novice level there are various excellent Area 9 rallies with Rob Lumb, Richard Waygood and Caroline Moore that you are invited to attend. Booking is on HorseMonkey and the dates tend to book up very fast.

 
Have a great half term, and good luck to our ten members taking their C+ exam next week.
Alison

September 2018

The summer holidays seem a distant memory already, but the OBH finished in style with a fantastic 75th Anniversary celebration organised by Antonia Roskill. It was lovely to see several of our instructors on the bucking bronco, although none could come close to the record time set by Henry Roskill. Huge thanks to Antonia for arranging such a great night for all ages. Please check out her website http://arpartyplanning.co.uk if you are planning a party!
 
After clinching the Open Eventing title at the Championships for the first time for 25 years with our all-boy team of Jack, Max and Henry, as well as Alicia, Sophie and Eleanor retaining the Senior Horse and Pony Care trophy, our younger members demonstrated the considerable talent coming up through the ranks.
Scarlett Starkey set high standards on day 1 of the Regional Championships by winning the Regional dressage. The show jumpers battled dreadful weather on the Sunday and showed incredible determination and team spirit. On day 3 the eventers were out in force, coming 2nd and 4th in the team competition with Issy Insley winning her section, Scarlett Starkey and Bea Cadogan 2nd in theirs and George Gardiner 3rd in his. To add icing to the cake they finished 1st and 2nd in the team Tack and Turnout competition with Scarlet winning individually.
In the Rectory Farm Area 9 SJ competition 2 weeks later, our team of Daisy Chugg and Harry Vigors, WON the 75cm competition.
 
Championship entry fees
With such a huge number of children qualifying for the Regional Championships this year we will be asking members to pay for their own Regional Championship entry fees next year rather than the branch automatically fully funding them. We will continue to pay entry fees for the National Championships and hope all our members will aspire to compete there in one of the many disciplines. 
 
Kit Amnesty!
We are missing a few of the new senior camp and junior camp hat silks which some members inadvertently took home. We need full sets for next year’s rides so please could you ask your child to check if they still have one. At senior camp it was particularly members with hats that don’t need a silk as theirs ended up in the accommodation block. The silk should be signed with a permanent pen before returning! 
Also several OBHPC team saddle cloths went home to be washed after various different competitions this year and haven’t yet been returned. We need them for our team chasers.
If you have any of these items, or any other OBHPC kit, please drop it to Alison at Larkhill Farm, Wantage, or Joy at Manor Farm, East Hanney. 
 
Olympia
Thursday tickets are now sold out, we have just 5 tickets for Sunday evening. They are very good tickets reserved as soon as ticket sales opened, at the special PC rate of £46.50 each.
Please email alison@obhpc.co.uk if you’d like some or all of the remaining 5.
 
OBHSC Show
The hunt supporters club have their annual show at Sower Hill, Uffington tomorrow starting at 9am. There are a good range of showing and jumping classes. Details: http://www.oldberkshunt.co.uk/events/old-berks-hunt-open-horse-show/
 
OBH Reeling

Back by popular demand …“Reel in to Autumn” Scottish reels and picnic supper
Saturday 10th November, 7.30pm Shrivenham Memorial Hall, Oxon SN6 8AU
Dancing to the Craigievar Band, tickets £40 each.
Tickets and information from juliet.souter@marriotts.co.uk / 07770 640080
There are two reels practices & everyone is welcome – 
Thursday 1st November, Faringdon Town Hall, 7.30pm
Wednesday 7th November, Hinton Waldrist village hall, 7.30pm

 
Camp dates 2019
  • Senior Camp 28th July – 2nd Aug
  • Junior Camp TBC but aiming for straight after Senior Camp
  • Mini Camp 28th – 31st July
  • Tiny Trotters Camp 28th – 31st July
Timings will be adjusted from this year for Mini Camp and Tiny Trotters to work well for parents with children at both camps.
 
Fixtures for the next few weeks are below. Please see http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/rallies for the full list as it is currently being updated daily.
 
Alison

August 2018

It’s been a busy month!
 
Our four fabulous summer camps already seem a distant memory. Around 150 members aged 3 to 20 took part and I suspect all the horses and ponies appreciated so many of the sessions being on a surface after so much dry weather. A massive thank you to our amazing camp teams: Lisa, Margaux, Erica, Danni, Abi, Tor, Mary, Juliet, Joanna, Caroline, Jill and Joy. They work incredibly hard throughout the camps and for weeks beforehand and we all really appreciate all that they do.
 
Regional and Area tetrathlon, dressage, showjumping and eventing brought some highs and a few lows, and an almost embarrassing number of team and individual Championship qualifications for the OBHPC. We look forward to cheering those members on at the National Championships from tomorrow and the Regional Championships the following weekend. Our branch ran the Area showjumping, thanks to lots of help from volunteers, re-filling the branch coffers.
 
Lots of members passed numerous tests at Camps but if you weren’t at Camp and would like to do your D, D+ or C Test on Monday 3rd September, please let Ann Addington know: addington.ann@gmail.com
 
Rallies this week have been quiet so we are assuming a lot of people are on holiday, but to end the summer we have a couple of big rallies suitable for all ages: the Mock Hunt on Friday 31st August (you don’t need to be interested in hunting to come, but this is a great introduction if you are) and a BIG end of summer rally on Monday 3rd September.
Both promise to be huge fun from lead rein upwards and not-to-be-missed for our older members wanting to test their skills cross country or over a puissance wall.
 
And finally …. we are all looking forward to our 75th party on Friday 31st August. We are unlikely to hold a party like it for another 25 years so please make sure you are there and pass the invitation on to any friends, family or connections that have associations old or new with OBHPC. Please, please let Antonia know numbers so we can sort catering rather than leaving it to nearer the time! ar@arpartyplanning.co.uk
 
Enjoy the rest of the holidays,
 
Alison
 
May 2018
 
The Elmwood Big Rally
If you haven’t already booked for the Elmwood Big Rally on 30th May, please book now with Ann Addington (addington.ann@googlemail.com) for your first choice of sessions. We have lots of fun activities for all ages and it is the one opportunity for us to get all our members together on horseback. For those aiming for dressage, SJ or eventing teams it is a good opportunity to be seen by team trainers and team managers.
 
Dressage Demo
A highlight on our fixture calendar, Shaun Mandy will be giving a dress demo from 4.30pm on Friday 1st June at North Farm Stud, Fawley. Shaun will be riding his Inter 1 horse Inky as well as three of our members’ horses/ponies to demonstrate how and why he would ride each one differently. Those that have been to Shaun’s camp demos will know how brilliantly they add context to his lessons so come along and bring your friends; it is open to members, families and friends. Refreshments included, small charge on the night to cover costs, numbers to Lisa Smith (lisasmith@bensmithandsons.co.uk).
 
The Junior Show
The schedule for the OBHPC u12 Show on Sunday 3rd June at Sower Hill, Uffington is online. Members and non-members are all welcome so please encourage your friends to come along. Stainswick Show for novice riders is on 30th June. Again the schedule is online.
 
Mounted Games
Our three teams had a great time at the Mounted Games Area competition. A special well done to the polishing skills of the Junior and Senior teams who won the turnout award for BOTH competitions!
 
Countryside Day
Aaron’s display team of Charlotte, Ella, Rex, Kitty and Grace put on a great performance at the OBHPC Countryside Day on Sunday. See Facebook for photos and the full report.
 
Tetrathlon
Well done to Lexie New who has been selected for the Central Junior Tetrathlon team. The Tet squads have continued their streak of great results throughout the Spring. A full report of their fantastic April results is online: http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/disciplines-and-teams/tetrathlon/
 

Badminton Horse Trials

The annual camping trip to Badminton Horse Trials was again a great success.
It was lovely to have so many members there, particularly to support two of our older members who made us very proud for very different reasons.
After the challenge of qualifying and months of preparation, Honor Macfarlane made the very mature decision to withdraw Ziggy during the showjumping phase of the Mitsubishi Motors Cup as he really wasn’t enjoying the ground conditions.
Later in the week, in a very emotional presentation, Erin Angel was awarded the Hannah Francis Award for Talent, Courage and Inspiration.
 
Olympia
We have a total of 40 tickets available for Olympia this year. They are 2nd tier seats in Block 16 so a very good view and close to the shopping area, at the special PC Group rate of £46.50 each including booking fee.
Thursday 20th December for the afternoon performance
Sunday 23rd December for the evening performance
Please email alison@obhpc.co.uk to reserve your tickets. Payment is required by 1st September.
 
PC Kit
White Horse Feeds will be getting a delivery of new OBHPC kit in all sizes in time for half term. Please remember payment must be by cheque or cash (even if you are paying by card for feed and other items) as they kindly sell kit on behalf of our branch, not as part of their own business.
 
Concussion
Our very best wishes go to Sasha Cammack who is spending this week in hospital in London undergoing treatment for on-going concussion following an innocuous looking fall 2 years ago.
It is a good opportunity to remind parents of the Pony Club’s “If in doubt, sit it out” policy. If any member sustains a fall which may have shaken their brain, whether it involves an impact to their head or not, they will be asked to sit out the rest of the lesson. Children with a suspected or confirmed concussion from any cause should not attend rallies until they are completely symptom free and either 21 days have passed since the injury or 10 days have passed and they have been signed as fit to ride by a doctor. Please support rally organisers and instructors in implementing this policy.
 
For those with exams, good luck! The summer isn’t far away.
 
Alison

 

April 2018

Summer Camps
Camp forms for all four of our camps are now on the website with guidance on the ages that each camp aimed towards. It is really helpful to camp organisers if you can give them an early indication if your child is intending to attend their camp. There is a full refund for cancellations before 5th June.
 
Eventing
Despite the weather, 20+ members had a fantastic time at this years eventing camp and were very grateful for the all weather XC and new clubhouse at Aston Le Walls.
With so many cancelled events and rallies this Spring we will be adjusting the eventing team qualification criteria for this year. Details to follow, but as with all other years, we will balance the intention of including as many members as possible in teams with ensuring that they are capable of safely completing at their chosen level.
The Area 9 PC/BE League is up and running for 2018. Details on http://branches.pcuk.org/area9/area-9-pcbe-league/
This is a fun league with an end of season Ball for any members who compete in British Eventing and costs just £10 to register. Last week lots of us were at the Ball to see Esme Powell winning the 90cm title and we are looking forward to following everyone’s progress on the league table again this year.
 
Pony racing
Our pony racers have been enjoying considerable success over the past month with several new jockeys making impressive racing debuts. To find out more about racing rallies contact Do Curtis. joannacurtis@upperfarm.uk.com
 
Area 9 Horse and Pony Care
Our Horse and Pony care teams, coached this year by national champion Alicia Lee alongside Fiona Jack, faced tough competition at the Area 9 competition this weekend with 14 teams competing for the Junior title. The Junior teams (Scarlett, Lily, Kitty, and Gabriel, Rex, Marcos) came 3rd and 4th with the Seniors (Sophie, Eleanor, Eleka) coming second in their competition.
 
Test success
Alicia Lee and Honor Macfarlane both passed their B+ exam this week. This is a relatively new exam bridging the gap between B Test and A Test, testing riding and riding theory rather than stable management which is covered in the AH Test.
Verity Smith, Hannah Richardson, Ella Dixon, Zoe Martin and Siobhan Heneghan have all passed the Stage 1 Coaching Course so you will see them assisting at rallies and camps this summer.
 
Calling all ponies – Laminitis Alert!!
Spring has arrived in a rush and the first sunny day in weeks means the grass is super-rich. Protect your horses and ponies from laminitis by restricting access to lush spring grass from now until beginning of July.
 
Dates for your diary
***Save the date*** On the evening of Friday 31st August we will be holding a party for past and present members, parents and supporters of OBHPC to celebrate the branch’s 75th birthday. Details to follow.
 
Friday 4th May – An evening rally for Skill at Arms and Horseball at Asti Stud. Details in Fixtures below.
 
Thursday 30th May – The Big Rally at Elmwood. Details on: http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/the-elmwood-big-rally-30th-may-2018/
 
Sunday 3rd June – The OBHPC Junior Show at Sower Hill. Schedule available soon on http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/schedules/
 
These and other fixtures are below and online.
 
Alison
 

March 2018

Good luck!
It’s the the Dengie Area Show Jumping Finals this weekend and we have lots of members out competing for the OBHPC at  in the hope of a place at the National Championships.
Our Teach Chase teams will be at the Beaufort Team Chase for their Spring debut. Good luck Ella, Camilla, Henry, Jessie and Lottie, Talia, Gabriel, Lara.
 
Trainee Coaches .. and D/D+ Guinea Pig riders
We’re running courses for Trainee Coaches at Alden Farm, Upton on the 3rd and 13th April. If you are 16+ and have C+ or ideally B Test and would like to do the course please contact alison@obhpc.co.uk. There is one space available still on each day.
If you would like a FREE LESSON we need 4 guinea pig riders for 2 hours each afternoon, riding at D or D+ level, email alison@obhpc.co.uk. Payment in sweets!
 
Point to Point – Easter Monday
The Lockinge Point to Point is a major fund raiser for the OBH. It is our opportunity to thank them for all the support they give our branch so please help out on either the day or the day after, particularly if you hunt.

On the day Jane March would love to hear from anyone who can sell race cards between 11-2.30, even for just an hour. There is a prize for selling the most and it is a great way to burn off a lot of energy! Contact Jane on 07836687814 or email marshjane1965@gmail.com

The morning after, Vanessa Kilgour is coordinating the litter picking from 9-10am. Please just turn up with empty feed sacks and a pair of gloves. Those that assist will get a free day’s hunting as a thank you.
 
Pony Racing

There are flat races at the Point to Point for 13.2hh and 14.2hh ponies. Members that have taken part in the past have had an amazing time; you don’t need a racing pony, and there is a special prize for the highest placed Pony Club member. Email joannacurtis@upperfarm.uk.com to find out more.

 
Details of The Big Rally at Elmwood (30th May) will be out in the next week, as will Camp forms, so get ready to book.
 
There are loads of fixtures on over Easter, listed below. Please, please be considerate to rally organisers and keen their admin to a minimum by making essential requests for times, or any cancellations, at least a week in advance – not after times have been sorted and sent out!
 
We are hoping that another visit from the Beast from the East this weekend won’t cause too much disruption but again please be considerate to rally organisers if we have to make last minute changes and cancellations. They are at the mercy of the weather and the venue’s H&S policies but will try to keep rallies going if at all possible for the sake of those that can’t otherwise get ponies out.
 
Keep warm!
 
Alison

 

Feb 2018

2018 Membership
If you haven’t returned your membership form for 2018 time is running out, especially if you want to be in branch teams. Please post to Joy or bring on Sunday for the Awards Night. With unlimited £5 subsidies on rallies, 3rd party insurance for your horse / pony (whether taking part in PC activities or not), liability insurance for trainee coaches and a huge choice rallies, camps and activities, make sure you are a member of the biggest branch in the UK for our 75th anniversary year!  The link to the renewal form is here: http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/files/2014/12/Membership-Renewal-Form-2018.pdf
If for any reason you are leaving us it is really helpful if you can let Joy know. We’ll miss you!
 
Young Coach of the Year
Aaron Nobbs was awarded Young Coach of the Year at the national Pony Club Coaching Conference on Monday. In addition to all of his teaching over the past year he has put in a huge number of hours helping out as a volunteer and while this isn’t something that we expect, we are delighted that his commitment to the branch has been recognised and rewarded.Instructors v Coaches
It seems an appropriate time for our branch to follow other branches as well as BS, BD and BE in recognising our “instructors” should be referred to as “coaches” as their role is to work with our members to help them achieve their goals rather than simply instruct them.
To minimise confusion (as we have referred to our trainees as “coaches”) our part-qualified, supervised coaches will be referred to as “trainee coaches” and those that have completed their qualification, probation and assessment will be “junior coaches”.

 
Coaching Course
We will be running a Step 1 Coaching Course over Easter. This is suitable for members interested in gaining their coaching qualification. You need to be aged 16+ and hold C+ test. Please email alison@obhpc.co.uk to register interest.
Awards Night
We are delighted so many of you will be at the Awards Night on Sunday night. There is space to squeeze a few more in to Hanney Village Hall if you’d like to join us from 6.30pm. If you’ve never been before it is a fun, relaxed and sociable evening, please let Joy know you are coming so we have enough tables and chairs. joy@obhpc.co.uk
Please bring your HAT and PASSPORT (unless already been stickered) as we have new hat tags for 2018 which are valid for all riding associations; RC, BE, BD, BS as well as PC. All members attending camp or riding in teams need to have their passport checked and this is a great opportunity to get your sticker.

 
Area Showjumping
We are hosting the Area 9 Showjumping on Saturday 28th July. Lisa Powell is coordinating the list of volunteers available to help out on the day (various roles), the day before (setting up) and the day after (moving trailers). Lisa would love to hear from anyone that can assist; lisa.p@me.com
 
Sponsoring a Class
We’d like to offer our members an opportunity to sponsor a class at the Area 9 SJ either as a family, as a business or in recognition of a special horse or pony. For £50 the sponsor will be mentioned on the schedule and the site plan as well as throughout the day. Please email alison@obhpc.co.uk with your preferred (and second choice) of class; 70cm, Regional (80cm), Novice, Intermediate or Open.
 
Elmwood Big Rally
To celebrate OBHPC’s 75th birthday this year, the Elmwood Big Rally will be even bigger this year! Please put the date in your diary; Wednesday 30th May; earlier this year as schools break up for the summer particularly late this year.
Rallies
We’ve had a lot of members at rallies over half term and some slightly frazzled rally organisers spending far more time on admin than they should. When booking, please include any essential requests, such as “only if after 4pm”. It takes time to sort the groups out and it isn’t fair to ask for changes once they have been sent out. Rally organisers try to send times and groups a week in advance; any cancellations and requests need to be before then. Thank you for your consideration; it is in everyone’s interest to make the rally organisers’ job as pleasant as possible!

 
Enjoy the rest of half term.
 
Alison
 
 
Jan 2018
 
OBHPC Awards Night 
Join us on Sunday 18th February at 6.30pm at the Hanney Village Hall for our Annual Awards Night.
Bring a picnic or wine and nibbles and join us for a couple of hours of fun to celebrate our members’ ups, downs, successes, trials and all the highlights of 2017.
Please email joy@obhpc.co.uk with numbers.
 

Tetrathlon
12 OBHPC competitors will be heading to Wroughton for the VWH Triathlon this weekend, Good luck to Oliver Vigors, Tegan O’Neill, Zara T, Cecily Townrow, Harry Vigors, Arthur Souter, Bert Souter, Kayleigh O’Neill, Peter Aird, Bella Stevens, Lexie New and Jack Church
If you’d like to join the Tet squad, on Sat/Sun 10-11 Feb there is the Beaufort SJ Tet and Tri at Summerhouse and Westonbirt. An excellent and friendly competition at 2 great venues with the option of doing just the Tri, or adding the Showjumping to make it a Tet. If you’d like more info or to enter, email fm.ej.church@btinternet.com. No experience needed to come and join in.

 
Badminton Horse Trials. 1-6th May
We have 7 camping pitches available for OBHPC at a special rate of £204 (15% discount). The pitches are suitable for any size of horse box or caravan (or tent) and there are local companies that hire and set up caravans if needed. The rate includes access to Badminton for all 6 days of competition for 2 people and unlimited U12s. Most years tends to involve a lot of mums and prosecco for dressage / shopping with children and dads arriving on the Friday evening in time for the action over the weekend. Email alison@obhpc.co.uk to reserve your place.
 
Horse & Pony Care + Horse & Pony Care Teams
If you are taking C, C+, B or AH Test this summer, or aren’t aiming for any tests but would like to test your skills, Alicia Lee – National Horse & Pony Care Champion 2017 and OBHPC senior member – will be running Horse & Pony Theory sessions between now and the Area competition on 14th April. The sessions will be late afternoon / early evening on Sundays and you can join in for the series or pick and mix the topics you are interested in. They will be a great way to prepare for tests and the H&P Care Areas are a really good opportunity to qualify for the Championships where Fiona Jack’s teams have been incredibly successful for the past few years. Email Alicia to register interest: alicia-lee1994@hotmail.co.uk.
 
Yummy Mummy Rallies
Don’t let the children have all the fun! Our Yummy Mummy rallies are a great way to meet other mums (and occasional dads and grannies) while keeping your horse or your child’s pony fit over the winter. The group sessions cover SJ, polework, flat work and occasionally XC. They are suitable for all abilities and always feature coffee and cake at the end. As they’re not officially PC rallies you are not covered by PC insurance for these lessons.
 
All the best
 
Alison
 
Our thanks to White Horse Feeds in Childrey for kindly sponsoring our newsletters. Don’t forget that White Horse Feeds deliver free in the OBHPC area (minimum 15 sacks / bales). Call 01235 751529.

 

Dec 2017 Update

Xmas Rallies

We have loads of great rallies lined up for the holidays. Please book in as soon as you can so the rally organisers can get plenty of Mince Pies and chocolate in!

Hunting in the Xmas holidays
There will be a number of meets over the Christmas period and if anyone would like to know where a specific meet is please get in contact with Vanessa Kilgour on vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk
In addition to the usual meets, the Old Berks Hunt are very kindly hosting a Children’s Meet on Wednesday 27th December.  This is aimed at children and accompanying adults only and should be a great day for all abilities – lots of jumping over old grassland and plenty of gates for those non jumpers.  If you are interested in coming please let Vanessa know so she can send you details on the venue, parking etc.
 
Taster rallies
Several members have taken the opportunity to invite a friend to a rally over Christmas and it isn’t too late if you know of anyone that might be tempted to join Pony Club. Just email joy@obhpc.co.uk with your friend’s name and email address and contact the rally organiser to book them in. The taster rally is free for your friend, there are loads of activities to chose from and they don’t even need to get their hat tagged for it.
 

Awards Night

The 2018 Awards Night will be on Sunday 11th February in Letcombe Regis Village Hall, starting at 6.30pm with a picnic supper. The focus again for this year will be a fun and random selection of awards, and this year we will also have badges for all those attending that competed in Area Teams in 2017 so be sure to sign up early with Joy (joy@obhpc.co.uk) as we need to know who’ll be there.
 

The PC Coaching Conference
The 2018 Pony Club Coaching Conference takes place at Bury Farm Equestrian Centre, Leighton Buzzard, on 12 February 2018 and had a range of world-class speakers and insightful demonstrations including international show jumper and trainer Matt Lanni. There will be demonstrations from Neue Schule and the Society of Master Saddlers. The conference is open to all and is particularly recommended for coaches (and counts as CPD). We’d also recommend it for teens that compete seriously and their parents of  as it is a great opportunity to attend a talk from equine biomechanics expert Russell Guire and performance psychologist Charlie Unwin
Tickets are £40 and if you book your place before 12 January 2018 you will go into a draw to win a Neue Schule bit. Booking is online: http://events.pcuk.org/?page_id=5092

 
Badminton Horse Trial Tickets
We will be arranging a camping trip to Badminton Horse Trials (2nd-6th May) again next year. It is always brilliant fun and the package includes entry for 2 adults and unlimited u12s for the entire event, with a 15% Pony Club discount. Details will follow in January but as there isn’t group booking priority for grandstand tickets I would encourage everyone to book their own dressage and SJ tickets when booking opens after Christmas to get the best seats.
 
Olympia
Two lucky members had the time of their lives at Olympia last week after qualifying to compete there. Thomas Bradburne on Dolly finished 3rd in the Mini Major and Sophie Stiles on Hunter competed daily in the Shetland Grand National, winning on the final day. Photos and a video are on https://www.facebook.com/OBHPC/
 
Hat tags
We have new mint green tags for 2018 which will also enable you to compete at RC and BE events with the same tag.
 
Thank you to White Horse Feeds in Childrey for the generous sponsorship of our Newsletter. As well as selling feed, hay, bedding, riding equipment and Xmas trees they are a great place to stock up on last minute Christmas gifts.
 
Wishing all our members and instructors a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!
 
Alison
 

Nov 2017 Update

Invite a friend
 
Do you know anyone who owns or has access to a pony and isn’t a member of Pony Club? This is your chance to invite them to come along to a rally for free to see if they’d like to join. We have a voucher for every member to give to a friend, to be used any time between now and the end of January, but the Xmas rallies are probably a great opportunity for them to get involved.
Your voucher should be attached, but email alison@obhpc.co.uk if you haven’t received yours. Just ask your friend to contact Joy Wilson using the contact details on the voucher.
 
Teams for Avon Vale Christmas ShowjumpingThe Christmas show-jumping extravaganza has something for everyone!  It is being held on 28th and 29th December and always has lots of support and is lots of fun.  We would love to enter some teams this year – particularly on Friday 29th December when Lisa Powell and Emma Aird will be there, along with a trainer to help warm-up and walk courses.  We are hoping to come home with lots of tinsel and lots of rosettes so please come and join in and end the year on a high!!  Entries to Emma Aird at emmaaird@btinternet.com.  Emma will be sending in entries on 1st December to make sure we can enter everyone that would like to take part.  She will need to know the name of the horse/pony, the name of the rider and the Class no/s you would like to enter.  First come first serve with teams.  The schedule and entry form can be downloaded from http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/schedules/.Children’s Meet

We’ve got an exciting change of venue for this year’s Christmas Children’s Meet and whether you enjoy jumping or will be following the action on the lead rein we can guarantee you won’t be disappointed. Other than our lovely hunt mentors, any adults there will need to be accompanied by a child (!) so if your child would like to go but doesn’t yet have a suitable adult, Vanessa Kilgour will be happy to help find one for you. The meet will be on Wednesday 27th Dec and the venue will be advised to all booked in, a few days in advance. vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk

Summer Camps 2018
 
To help you plan your holidays well in advance, we have a provisional date for Mini Camp and Tiny Trotter Camp, which will Mon 30th July to Weds 1st August.
Confirmed date for Junior Camp is Monday 6th August to Thursday 9th August at Wickstead.
Confirmed date for Senior Camp is Sunday (eve) 29th July to Friday 3rd August at Hartpury.
Details and booking forms will be available in the Spring.

Pre-Season Event Camps 2018Dates are now confirmed for our two pre-season event camps.  Both camps are designed for those members serious about eventing.   The Unicorn Camp will be for those already competing at PC novice level and above and The Aston Camp will be for those focussed and competitive riders who are likely to be competing later in the summer from 70cm – 90cm.The Unicorn Camp will be at the Unicorn Trust, Stow on the Wold on Day 1 including stabling and then to Lyneham on Day 2.  This is being held on the 4th-5th April and we have been lucky enough to secure BE u18 coach Mandy Lucey and professional event rider Dan Bizzarro as our trainers for the two days.  The camp is limited to just 16 places and will cost £265.00 per horse.  This will include lunch and dinner on day 1 and breakfast and a packed lunch on day 2.  Additional meals for parents are available but will be charged for – in particular it would be good for everyone to have dinner together and the cost for this (two courses) is £15/headThe Aston Camp will be on the 3rd and 4th April.  Instructors are to be confirmed but rest assured they will be of the usual OBH high standard and members can be guaranteed exceptional teaching and a huge amount of fun.  The cost of this camp will be £180.00 per horse and the camp is limited to 20.In the first instance please email your interest to Lisa Heneghan lheneghan@btinternet.com and follow this up within 7 days with a £50 deposit, cheque payable to OBHPC, to Lisa at Alden Farm, Upton, Oxfordshire.  OX11 9HS

Have a go at Tetrathlon!

For anyone thinking of giving Tetrathlon a go, Sunday 28 January 2018, is the VWH Triathlon at the Ridgeway School, Wroughton, near Swindon.  This is a normal Triathlon, but is also the Area 9 qualifier for the National Pony Club Triathlon Championships.  It’s our most local Triathlon, and we usually have a great turnout for this event. Contact Fred Church for details. fm.ej.church@btinternet.com

2nd Hand

For those missing the PC 2nd Hand shop, Blewbury EC now has a 2nd Hand section in their tack shop and are happy to sell good quality 2nd Hand tack, tugs, riding clothes and equipment including saddles, for a 20% commission. They are open 12-5.30pm Mon-Fri and 12-4pm on Sat-Sun above the indoor school.

Warm coats

There is a new supply of our warm, water-resistant winter coats at White Horse Feeds with every size now available. Call in to stock up on that and other PC kit. White Horse Feeds kindly sponsor our newsletters so this is a good opportunity to remind you that as well as horse equipment and feed, they will also be selling Xmas trees.
 
Christmas Rallies
 
We have lots of wonderful fun rallies over Xmas and a chance for members to take their D and D+ test. Please book in now so rally organisers can get plenty of chocolate, mince pies and mulled wine ready!
 
All the best
 
Alison
 

Oct 2017 Update

Body protectors
The safety standard for body protectors will be updated in 2018 so if you are thinking of buying a new one in the next few months you may prefer to wait for the new standard to be announced. There will be a phasing out of the “old” standard over at least 2 years so current body protectors should be fine until around 2020. We’ll bring you more details as soon as we hear more.

Horse of the Year Show
Sophie Stiles and Thomas Bradburne both qualified to compete at HOYS this year and had a great time there last weekend. Sophie and Joey finished 12th in the SHP and Thomas and Dolly came 15th in the 12.2hh showjumping. Photos are on www.facebook.com/obhpc
The North Hereford Mounted Games team qualified for Olympia this year and finished 5th. It is the first time for many years that an Area 9 team has qualified and gives lots of hope to all our junior games teams for their future prospects!

Olympia

We sold out of Olympia tickets quickly this year however Tamsyn Lay no longer needs hers so there are 6 available for the Monday pm if anyone would like some. £43 each (special PC rate) email tamsynlay@hotmail.co.uk if you are interested.

Awards Night
Please put Friday 16th February in your diary for our Annual Awards Night. It will be a special one next year as we’ll be celebrating the OBHPC’s 75th birthday.

Area 9 Rallies
In addition to branch activities listed below, Area 9 runs a huge number of activities for our members. You’ll find details on the Area 9 website (https://branches.pcuk.org/area9) and I have listed them at the foot of this email so you have an idea of the variety available. A lot of the more specialist training for older members is run by Area 9 as well as First Aid and Safeguarding courses for volunteers.

Team Chasing
OBHPC teams have been having a great time at the autumn events and there are just one or two left before the season ends. Email emmaaird@btinternet.com if you’d like to go on the list

Triathlon
Fred will be running a Postal Shoot competition over the winter, you can join in at the Thursday practice sessions or from home. Please email fm.ej.church@btinternet.com for details of the postal shoot or if you’d like to have a go at a Triathlon over the winter as there are plenty more fixtures in October and November. We have competitors aged 7 to 24 in the branch. Over the winter it is just swimming, running and shooting (beanbag throwing for minis) with XC riding added in when the weather improves.

Hunting
The policy for supervision of children hunting with the OBH has been updated and we ask that members follow the recommendations from The Masters:

  • Children 5 and under should be on a lead rein.
  • Children 6-12 should be accompanied, unless they hold Pony Club C Test or have the requisite experience to hunt unaccompanied.
  • Children 13-17 can hunt unaccompanied if they hold Pony Club C Test or have the requisite experience to hunt unaccompanied.

Vanessa Kilgour would be happy to arrange a mentor to accompany your child: vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk 0777 555 8673

The OBH have an Introduction to Hunting evening on Wednesday 18th October 7pm at the King & Queen, Longcot for anyone who is interested in coming out hunting but is unsure of what goes on…this evening will let them hear first hand what hunting with the OBH is all about and they’d love to see PC parents and members there too.
 

Rallies
There are some great rallies over half term including an opportunity to drive ponies, a Ridgeway hack, Autumn hunting, Tiny Trotters and XC training so get booked in now and make the most of the warm weather while it lasts.

 
White Horse Feeds
White Horse Feeds kindly sponsor our newsletters. They are holding a sale with 50% off giftware throughout October so get ahead with your Xmas shopping!
Enjoy half term,Alison

 

Sept 2017 Update

Blenheim Eventers Challenge
Jack Whiteford, Ella Charles, Lottie Aird and Shannon Lewis are our team competing in the PC100 Eventers Challenge at Blenheim on Friday. They will be on at 9.30am if you are there and able to cheer them on.
 
Team Chasing
Good luck also to our 2 teams made up of Lottie, Talia, Ella, Henry, Camilla, Taryn and Bella competing in the first novice team chase of the season. There is one space in a team for an over12 jumping 2’9″+ to join them. Contact emmaaird@btinternet.com for details on this or any of the other upcoming team chases. Please note that you will need your own insurance.
  • 8 Oct Bicester & Whaddon Chase (3’ any age)
  • 22 Oct Grafton (2’9” any age)
  • 29 Oct Cotswold
Autumn Hunting
Lots of members enjoyed the mock hunt last month and we’d love to see you and others out again with hounds. For September and October a lot of the Saturday Meets are in the afternoon, the pace is slower and you don’t need to plait. It is correct to wear a hacking jacket but your OBH coat or another warm, dry coat is fine. We can usually arrange a mentor for unaccompanied children (must be arranged in advance) but parents will need to follow on foot or stay with their horsebox at the Meet. Please contact Vanessa on vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk for venues and times.
Area 9 SJ Championships
After a few busy weeks we had a few less members than usual competing in the Area 9 SJ Championships and some highs and lows, but a win for Lottie Aird in the 1m class helping her team with Sophie Gordon and Mimi Johnson to 2nd place.
 
Senior Camp Dates
For those keen to book holidays around it, Senior Camp at Hartpury will be from Sunday 29 July – Friday 3 August 2018. Dates and venues for Junior, Mini and Tiny Trotters Camps will follow as soon as they have been confirmed.
 
Upcoming events:
There are various events on the schedules page (http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/schedules) but these ones may be of particular interest:
 
Sunday 24th September
OBH Supporters Club Show in Uffington
 
Sunday 1st October
Berks & Bucks clear round XC at Kingsclere
 

Sunday 15th October

OBH Hunter Trial

 
 
Rallies
We have loads of rallies being added to the fixtures list at the moment so check back regularly over the next week as there will be limited availability during the colder months so rally organisers don’t freeze! (http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/rallies)
 
If you are on the waiting list you must let the rally organiser know if you no longer want the place. They often juggle groups to make space for everyone and it is frustrating to discover someone has made alternative plans and not told them, so a quick email to update them on plans is a big help.
 
I hope horses and ponies are enjoying a quieter few weeks after a busy summer!
 
Best wishes,
 
Alison

 

August 2017 Update

We have had the most wonderful month of camps; all four camps enjoyed their share of sunshine, along with some torrential showers which failed to dampen spirits. My thanks go out to all of the camp organisers, instructors, coaches and helpers; they work their socks off at camps and find it incredibly rewarding to see skills, confidence and friendships developing throughout each camp.

There are photos from camp as well as lots of other updates on our Facebook and Instagram pages as well as a couple of great offers for OBHPC members.

www.facebook.com/OBHPC

For those at Senior Camp, keep and eye on the Fixtures list as Charlotte will be offering her popular Equipilates sessions (fantastic for improving the rider’s position and balance) at rallies.

Lots of members passed D+ and C Tests during camp. Tussel has put on an extra Road Rider Test on the 8th and 16th September for those that haven’t yet taken it; if you have already passed your C Test you need Road Rider before your C Test is recognised, if you have taken D+ now is the time to do your Road Rider Test, before embarking on C Test. Details are on the Fixtures list.

The OBHPC Mini ODE at the weekend attracted entries from miles away to tackle the challenging and technical Lyford XC course. Our thanks to Tor Tearney and her team for organising it all (and offering to run it again next year) and Carol and Richard Starkey for hosting it and a huge well done to all our competitors. The Pony Club SJ set will be there for a few weeks so we can look forward to some SJ rallies on grass as well as some technical XC rallies for those jumping up to 80cm and mini rallies over the mini XC course.

Next week is the Mock Hunt at Warborough Farm. It is a wonderful opportunity for all our members from tiny trotters upwards to enjoy riding across beautiful farmland on the edge of the Downs. Our hunting mentors will be on hand to assist with leadreins but parents may want to bring their trainers! For older members it is some of the best XC jumping in the area so join us for a morning of fun, followed by a BBQ. It is open to those that hunt, those that might want to hunt and those that just enjoy being out in the countryside withe their horse or pony. Book with Vanessa Kilgour: vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk

Our Tetrathlon team had a fun few days of competition, camping and fancy dress at their national Championships last weekend, finishing with a 3rd for their mixed team. The main Championships are this weekend at Cholmondley Castle in Cheshire with the less competitive Regional Championships the following weekend at Rectory Farm. Good luck to those competing at either Championships; fly the OBHPC flag with pride and good sportsmanship.

Our Fixture list will be filling fast over the next 2 weeks as rally organisers and members return from holidays so check back soon. We will have a particular focus on mini rallies while the evenings are still warm and light but plenty for everyone else too!

http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/rallies

Our thanks to White Horse Feeds in Childrey for sponsoring our newsletters.

Enjoy the holidays!

Alison

 

 
July 2017 Update

A slightly late newsletter in a very busy month…

It was lovely to have so many members at Elmwood for the Big Rally; over 100 riders all having a great time with their horses and ponies. It is always such a nice start to the summer.

Final preparations are underway for our four summer camps and we are really pleased with the take up for our new Tiny Trotters camp, giving 3-6 year olds a little taste of the fun to come.

Mini and Junior camps will give our u12 members the chance to fine tune their skills in time for our Mini One Day Event at Lyford Stud on Sunday 13th August. It is a wonderfully friendly introduction to eventing so please come along to support it. If your child isn’t competing Tor Coxhead (wispywasp@hotmail.com) would love to have offers of help for a few hours on the day.
https://www.horse-events.co.uk/horse-events/the-old-berks-hunt-pony-club-mini-ode-12-years-under/

Various teams have been out representing the OBH with great success; our Intermediate SJ team (Shannon Lewis, Niamh Warburton, Honor McFarlane and Gorgia Lisi) won at Barbury with Honor taking the individual win too, and our Open Tetrathlon team (John Church, Jack Church, Tina McPeak) won their Area competition and will be joined at the Championships by Lexie New who qualified in the Junior section.

At the Area Show Jumping, hosted by OBHPC, we had team wins at both ends of the competition; our winning regional team of Annie Miners, Lottie White, Mia Elvin and Scarlett Starkey will be joined by 5th placed Zoe Hay at the Regional Championships in August. Honor McFarlane, Miranda Hobby and Estelle Stables won the Open Team competition, along with a £500 voucher from Devoucoux, and will be joined by 2nd and 3rd placed Intermediates Sophie Gordon and Lottie Aird.

Results aside, the Area SJ competition was a huge success thanks to great organisational skills from Claire Lisi, Lisa Powell, Helen Keen, Caroline Norton-White and Joy Wilson plus a team of well over 50 volunteers over the weekend. So many of you were so generous with your time, regardless of whether your own children were competing and we really couldn’t have done it without you. We also had an incredibly supportive sponsor, Webbs Wood, and we hope that you will all be heading there for any fencing, gates and jump poles you may need in the future, to support them in return. We will be hosting the competition again next year, on 14th July, so I hope we can count on such generosity from parents and sponsors one more time.

We have been invited to send show jumping teams to Gatcombe to compete in a competitive 1m+ class on Friday 4th August and 90cm and 80cm classes on Saturday 5th August. If your child would like to be considered for any of the teams please email Claire Lisi on c.lisi@hotmail.co.uk THIS WEEKEND so we can select teams on Monday. Priority will be given to active members.

Good luck to our Area `Eventing squads competing at Dauntsey tomorrow and Foxcote next month, and our Dressage squad who have their Area competition on Wednesday. Fly the OBHPC flag with pride and make sure you have fun!

This month sees 3 members making their GB eventing debuts; Sasha is currently in Ireland with the Junior squad and Saffie and Georgina’s ponies are on the way to Hungary for the European Pony Championships. Honor and Rosie will be heading to Frickley for the BEu18 Championships this week and we wish all five girls the best of luck.

If you haven’t already found our Facebook page go to www.facebook.com/OBHPC/ for the latest news and results from our members. You don’t need to be “on Facebook” to look at the page.

Finally, our thanks to our newsletter sponsor White Horse Feeds in Childrey who can help you with all the kit you’ll need for summer camps as well as feed and equipment for horses, ponies, dogs and chickens. They are now fully re-stocked with PC clothing in all sizes after a minor hitch from our suppliers. If you have a sweatshirt with faded print please email a photo, the size and your address to alison@obhpc.co.uk and I’ll arrange for a replacement to be posted to you.

Enjoy the holidays!

Alison

June 2017 Update
 
Summer Camps
There are very few spaces remaining at the summer camps. If you haven’t yet booked and intend to, please email the organiser in the next 48 hours to let them know. All details of camps are on the Camps page of the website, including (for the next 48 hours only) the list of those already booked in in case you want to double check you are on there.
 
Teams
Team long lists for Eventing, SJ and Dressage are now online along with the acceptance form which needs to be returned as soon as you can.
Congratulations to those selected; for those not on the list we hope to get you competing confidently at the required level for next year. Our expectation is that all those on the long list will be able to compete at the Areas however this will be subject to training and space at each Area competition.
 
Tetrathlon Areas
The Area 9 Tetrathlon is on 8 – 9 July, with shooting (near Westonbirt) and swimming (Malmesbury) on the Saturday and running and riding at West Littleton on the Sunday.
All classes from U-8 to Open are catered for. The event is also a qualifier for the National Championships (for Junior, Intermediate and Open classes) however you do not have to want to qualify to enter. Please email Fred on fm.ej.church@btinternet.com if you would like more details or to be entered. It is always fun and friendly and this is a great opportunity to give it a go.
Eventing results

Our eventing results at the Areas last year suggested that we had some exciting times ahead and we haven’t been disappointed. Our members continued to build on the foundations that Ros, Spencer and Bert laid down and we have seen an unprecedented number of our older members getting noticed nationally and regionally. Saffie Osborn, Georgie Herrling and Sasha Hargreaves have all been long listed for GB Pony and Junior teams, Honor MacFarlane and Rosie Mason have been selected for the Central U18 team and Chiara Heneghan is on the reserve list. Well done to you all and good luck for the next 6 weeks.

 
Dressing for the weather
With warmer weather finally here, a quick reminder on dress code for rallies.
For XC long sleeves and a shirt and tie or stock are advised at all levels. A stock is compulsory for those jumping over 80cm.
For all other rallies, PC polo shirts are ideal, but otherwise please ensure shoulders and midriffs are covered, so no vest tops or crop tops.
 
New kit
We have had a report of the printing on one of the new sweatshirts fading in the wash so we have returned all the new stock of sweatshirts and XC skins for the printing to be re-set. If you have any problems at all with kit you have bought please let me know. We have changed suppliers which has brought prices down but we want to ensure we don’t compromise on quality. The new stock should be in White Horse Feeds late next week and prices are all on our website.
 
Our thanks again to White Horse Feeds in Childrey for sponsoring our Newsletters. In addition to stocking PC kit and saddlepads they are the place to go for feed, bedding, yard and riding supplies and even Father’s Day gifts!
 
Only a few weeks until the holidays!
 
Alison
 

 

May 2017 Update

The OBHPC Hunter Trial at the weekend gave members, parents and friends a welcome opportunity to compete on a traditional grass course and raised an impressive £1500 for the branch. Huge thanks to Vanessa Kilgour and her team of volunteers; these funds will help towards our new set of show jumps as well as subsidising rallies for all our members.

It’s a busy three months coming up for the branch so could I send a personal plea to all parents to help out where you can. The jobs that we struggle to find volunteers for are often the ones that anyone could help with. If you could tow a set of show jumps from A to B or help put up a marquee, please let me know so I can let you know dates we’ll need help. Other than instructors our branch is 100% volunteer run so we are dependent on parents helping out and not leaving it all to the rally organisers, camp leaders and committee. Thank you in anticipation of your help with this.

Our Camps are filling fast; it would be a huge help for forms to be sent in for all camps as soon as possible, especially for Junior Camp so that places can be released to members on the upper and lower age boundaries as early as possible. Forms for all four summer camps are on the website.

If you are hoping to be in teams for SJ, Dressage or Eventing please make sure results at the relevant level have been sent to team managers by 5th June and try to be available for the Big Rally at Elmwood on 4th July as it is an ideal opportunity for team training.

The fixtures list is below; please remember to give AT LEAST 7 days notice if you need to cancel a place and PLEASE avoid asking for any changes once times have been sent out!

Finally, big congratulations to Lexie New for being selected for one of the Central England teams for the Junior Regional tetrathlon. We look forward to hearing how she gets on and will update on Facebook (www.facebook.com/obhpc).

For those with exams over the next few weeks, good luck!

Alison

April 2017 Update

The Easter Holidays started with two very successful pre-season eventing camps at Aston Le Walls and a Mini Easter Egg Hunt in The Secret Garden. Tomorrow a number of our members will be competing in Pony Races at Hackwood Park and Lockinge Point to Points.
If you missed The World According to Kids, featuring a number of our younger members, the first episode is now available on catch up. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08mn6yd and episode 2 is on BBC2 on Thursday at 8pm.

Elmwood Big Rally

Booking is open for the Elmwood Big Rally on Sunday 2nd July. It is suitable for ALL ages with lots of different activities from treasure hunts and handy pony to equicise, gridwork, dressage, SJ and XC. There will also be an opportunity to take D and E tests.

If you are going to Tiny Trotter, Mini or Junior Camp PLEASE attend if at all possible as it helps us ensure you will be in the right ride for Camp.
Please email Ann Addington on addington.ann@googlemail.com to book, stating the height you would be comfortable jumping a full course at (if applicable) and a preference of the type of activities you would like to do. Priority for activities will be given to those booking early.
 
Second Hand Kit
We are closing down the 2nd Hand Shop. If there are items you would like to collect please come to the Elmwood Big Rally before 12pm. From 12pm we will be offering all remaining items to be sold in aid of the branch at knockdown prices.
 
Teams
If you are hoping to be considered for Area teams for SJ, Dressage or Eventing please ensure that you have put your name forward and are out competing at the relevant level and are sending in results. For SJ it is important that you have competed at the relevant level ON GRASS at least once. Deadline for results to be sent in before Monday 5th June to:
Claire Lisi (SJ – Sat 15th July) c.lisi@hotmail.co.uk
Millie Dollar (Eventing – Sat 22nd July) milliedollar@btinternet.com
Amelia Macpherson (Dressage – Weds 26th July) ameliamacpherson@yahoo.co.uk
If you are not sure PLEASE PUT YOUR NAME FORWARD so we can put you on the list for consideration. If you aren’t ready for this year the discipline managers will be happy to point you towards suitable competitions to prepare for next year, but there is nothing worse than hearing from someone that was hoping to be asked. If we don’t hear from you we will assume it is because you are away / busy / not wanting to compete!
 
Eventing with BE?
If you are doing any BE events this season please join the Area 9 PC/BE Eventing League. It is just £10 per horse to register; you’ll be able to track your progress on the league table and the top 3 at each level will win a lesson with a professional event rider and various other prizes. Most importantly, ALL those that register will be invited to an end of season Black Tie evening. The entry form can be downloaded from this page:
http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/disciplines-and-teams/eventing/BE-PC%20AREA%209/
 
Mounted Games
Good luck to our Mounted Games squad who will be competing at their Areas next Sunday. We will keep results updated on Facebook.
 
Horse & Pony Care
Congratulations to our Horse & Pony Care squad who came 1st and 2nd in both the Junior and Senior Areas last weekend. The winning teams are off to the Championships in August.
 
Enjoy the rest of the Easter break!
 
Alison
 

March 2017 Update

Let’s hope those horses and ponies are ready to lose their woolly coats as there is a busy time ahead over Easter for our members! In addition to numerous rallies we’ve got team chasing, pony racing, eventing camps, Horse and Pony Care Areas and the Mounted Games Areas all coming up next month.
 
Good luck tomorrow to two of our triathletes, Jack Church, Lexie New and Peter Aird, competing at the Pony Club Winter Championships and to our members competing at the Dengie SJ Area 9 finals.
 
A huge thank you to the Show Jumping committee; Claire Lisi, Helen Keen, Caroline White, Lisa Powell and Joy Wilson in particular and the many volunteers who have so generously given up time to help tomorrow.
 
Eventing Camps
Both our eventing camps are now being held at Aston le Walls where there are some fantastic facilities at our disposal. The camps are both full but with no one on the waiting list, so if you’d like to attend the fun camp (70cm – 110cm, Mon 10th – Tues 11th April) or the more intensive camp (90 – 120cm, Thurs 13th – Fri 14th April) please let Lisa Heneghan know so she can put you on the waiting list: lheneghan@btinternet.com
 
BE Eventing League
There is a new league this season for Pony Club Area 9 members who are members of British Eventing. It is £10 to register for the season and you gain points every time you compete. Full details and the registration form are online:
http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/disciplines-and-teams/eventing-league/
 
Team Chasing
Is anyone interested in coming to the Heythrop team chase on 15th April near Moreton-in-Marsh for the novice bogey time class – max height approx. 3’.  The other classes are described as “full up and a challenge but beautifully built” and we are guessing the novice will be the same. There is a prize for the best Pony Club team. We have one definite team and a part team who would love more to join them.  The National Team Chase Championship will be taking place later in the day so it should be a fun day with some spectacular viewing. For details please email emmaaird@btinternet.com

Pony Racing at the Point to Point
On Monday 17th April it’s the Old Berks Hunt Point to Point at Lockinge and the Vine and Craven Point to Point at Hackwood Park with opportunities for pony racing on the flat at both.
The Vine and Craven Junior Hunt Club Pony Charity Scurries at Hackwood Park are fun pony scurries for V+C Junior Hunt Club members and members of adjacent hunts who have hunted this season, suitable for under 8s on the lead rein to more experienced members.
It’s a great opportunity for the children to experience pony “racing” but in a very relaxed and friendly way and not under Pony Racing rules.
Details and schedule available from Antonia Roskill –  07795 423 401 – jhc@vineandcraven.co.uk
The Lockinge Pony Races are run under PRA rules with classes for under 138 cm and under 148cm. You don’t need to be on a racing pony, there is a special prize for the highest placed OBHPC member and it is a great chance to try you pony out against some good competition. For details and an entry for email joannacurtis@upperfarm.uk.com 

Schedules

Remember to check the schedules page for up to date information on that all that is going on. For our junior eventers the list includes the popular Shipton Moyne Ode on Wed 12th April hosted by the Beaufort Hunt PC.

http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/schedules/
 
Bonnie’s Show Jump
We have had some incredibly generous donations towards a jump in Bonnie’s memory. If you would like to contribute please send a cheque payable to OBHPC to Bishops Cottage, Ginge OX12 8QR or hand to any rally organiser.
 
Our thanks to White Horse Feeds for sponsoring our Newsletters. Pop in to their shop between Childrey and Sparsholt for all your feed, stable equipment, pony club clothing and some great gifts.
 
I’m looking forward to cheering on lots of our showjumpers at Hartpury tomorrow,
 
Alison

 

February 2017 Update

It was lovely to see so many members at the Awards Night last weekend. We have so many incredibly talented, cheerful and deserving members so it was very hard for the committee of ten to whittle the list down. For those not recognised with an award this year, please don’t feel that your efforts and achievements weren’t noticed; we hope to have you on the list for next February.
The highlights video is now on our Facebook Page. https://www.facebook.com/OBHPC/

Hunting Badges awarded to:
Henry Jennings
Jessie Saunders Rose Curtis Lottie Aird Helena Tomlinson

The Sheila Nash Memorial Stock awarded to:
Jack Whiteford
Max Warburton
Camilla Kilgour
Polly Kilgour
Lexie New

The Awards 2017:
Groom of the Year – Sasha Cammack
Smile award – Romilly McIntosh
Allrounder – Gabriel Jennings
Dressage Award – Siobhan Heneghan
Show jumping – Progress award – Archie BugnerShow jumping – Determination – Jules Farrant
Show jumping – Achievement – Lucy Perring
Senior Eventing Award – Sasha Hargreaves
Junior Eventing Award – Esme Powell
Tetrathlon Awards – Peter Aird, Fenella and Olivia Mathieson.
Racing Awards – Freddie and William Curtis
Viral Video award – Caspar Stephenson
Best Dressed Instructor – Shaun Mandy
Fun Rally award – Luke Stiles
The Bonnie Cup for Bravery Cross Country – Daisy Chugg
Photobomb of the Year – Joy Wilson
Volunteer of the Year – Emma Jennings
Team of the Year – The Open Dressage Team, Max, Jack, Sasha, Siobhan
Ambassador of the Year – Hannah Richardson
Pony Club Pony of the Year – Lottie Aird’s “Blue”
Lyndsay Cup for Best Shetland – Alice De Quincey Adams’ “Sparkle”
The Molly Award for Participation – Rex Winfield & Mr Pickles
Coach of the Year – Jack Church
Member of the Year – The entire Church Family

Bonnie’s Fund
We have had some incredibly generous donations to enable our members to remember Bonnie Armitage in various ways, including with the purchase of a special #BlueforBonnie showjump. If you would like to make a donation in memory of such a special girl please leave a cheque with any rally organisers or send direct to Tor Perring or Joy Wilson, payable to OBHPC and with “Bonnie” on the back.

West Wilts Eventers Challenge
We had a huge number of competitors in various sweetie-inspired teams for last week’s friendly team competition. Well done to you all for being such great ambassadors for the branch and bringing home so many rosettes, polos and carrots!

 

Tetrathlon
Our tetrathlon squad has been returning some great results with new recruits starting with triathlon (running, shooting/beanbag throwing and swimming) in the Under 8, Tadpole and Mini sections. Peter Aird, Lexie New and Jack Church have all qualified for the National Triathlon Championships; the first time the OBHPC have members qualifying across all three age groups.
Fred Church is always delighted to hear from new members keen to give it a go; it is very inclusive, no previous experience is needed and he has pistols available to borrow for the shooting. Email him on fm.ej.church@btinternet.com to be added to his email list to find out what is going on.

Our newsletters are sponsored by White Horse Feeds in Childrey; the perfect place to stock up on feed, yard equipment, horsey gifts and even hairnets. They have plenty of warm winter OBHPC coats in stock, and their PC rugby shirts are currently at a reduced price.

As the weather starts to improve look out for more after school rallies and lots more for our younger riders being added to the Fixtures List (http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/rallies),and for those thinking about entering the Pony Races at Lockinge or Hackwood Park there is a racing rally this weekend suitable for all ages.

Best wishes
Alison

 
 
January 2017 Update

Our members have started 2017 with huge energy and enthusiasm, with rallies and camps booking up as fast as we can arrange them and an incredible 40+ entries for the West Wilts Eventers Challenge on 14th February. If you would like to join a team please contact Lisa Powell (lisa.p@me.com) as soon as possible.

Mounted Games
We’ll be sending Junior and Novice Mounted Games teams to represent the OBHPC at the Area Trials on April 23rd.
We have several training rallies already planned (usually Fridays and occasional Sundays at Lyford) where you can learn the games. have fun with your pony and perhaps be selected for the teams.
Mounted Games is really good for increasing your general riding skills, balance and confidence while having a lot of fun. It teaches the rider and pony many essential skills useful across other sports. Contact Joanna Lambert by email for more details: JRJLambert@aol.com
Segway Rally
We have the opportunity to take 20 members for a “Segway Rally” at Bray Lake, Windsor from 6-8pm on Monday 1st May. The perfect rally for those older members on horses who miss the fun of mounted games and horseball. Team games, races, games and even polo, all on Segways! You need to be over 7st1lb to take part. £20 for 2 hours including Segway hire. To reserve your space please email alison@obhpc.co.uk before Mon 23rd Jan.

SJ Camp
The SJ camp is all but fully booked already so if you haven’t applied and had intended to, please contact Claire Lisi on 07880 622177 or c.lisi@hotmail.co.uk.

Eventing Camp
We have had an overwhelming response for the pre-season eventing camps at Aston and Boomerang so to secure places please send a deposit cheque for £50 to Lisa Heneghan, Alden Farm, Upton, OX11 9HS.
Just to clarify, the Aston camp will be seriously challenging at all levels and clearly aimed at those already competing at respective heights. Meanwhile, the Boomerang camp, whilst by no means the easy option, will be geared to encouragement and confidence building such that riders may even think, by the end, they would like to be moving up a level! Unfortunately there was a slight error on the last email as we are hoping the instructors at Boomerang will be Bert Scalesi, Ginny Haliwell, Toby Pigott and Nick Campbell – all highly experienced trainers who will be looking to push riders just a little bit out of their comfort zone. Lisa Heneghan lheneghan@btinternet.com

Dates for your Diary for this summer:

OBHPC Hunter Trial
Saturday 13th May at Wickstead
This year there will be a shortened course for younger riders as well as all the usual classes. All ages and abilities including parents!

OBHPC Junior Show
Sunday 4th June at Sower Hill, Uffington
Aimed at members and non-members aged 12 and under and those hoping to represent the branch in Grassroots SJ or Dressage teams this summer.

The Big Rally at Elmwood
Sunday 2nd July
Members of all ages are encouraged to come for a sociable day of riding. Please try your best to attend if you are going to Mini or Junior Camp as it is our opportunity to ensure you are in the correct ride for Camp.

OBHPC Mini ODE
Sunday 13th August at Lyford Stud
A lovely relaxed, fun event, with a mini XC course in a roped arena as well as the main XC courses.

A few changes to PC rules
There are a few changes to PC rules for 2017, the most relevant to our members is that long sleeves and medical armbands are now recommended but not compulsory for XC. Anyone with any chance of concussion following a fall will not be allowed to re-mount until they have been checked by a doctor; in reality this will mean not riding again that day. Anyone with confirmed concussion will not be allowed to ride for 21 days or until passed fit by a doctor.

Membership
The membership year runs to the end of January and we hope that everyone will be re-joining for another year to take advantage of the huge choice of rallies, camps, competitions and other activities as well as discounted hunting and event tickets, plus the great insurance that comes with membership of Pony Club. We’ll be sending the membership form out by email later this week, once Joy is back from the Philippines.

Below are rallies to the end of next month. Please check the website later this week as we are currently in the process of adding rallies for the next 4 months.

Finally, please make sure that you have the Awards Night on Saturday 11th February in your diary. In addition to giving out various awards we will be looking back on 2016 and discussing plans for camps, teams and tests for 2017 so it is the one event you really don’t want to miss.

Keep warm and dry!

Alison

December 2016 Update

The Christmas holidays started this weekend with a Xmas hack and jumping rally with Santa (Aaron), Mrs Santa (Sarah Charles) and they elves (coaches Jake, Jules, Honor and Faith) and 55 members, families and friends at Olympia.
On Thursday there is a very popular Musical Mince Pie Ride at Malthouse.

New Years Eve Mince Pie Ride
The Mince Pie Ride will be on New Year’s Eve this year starting at 11am from Larkhill Farm, Wantage, OX12 8PJ and going up beside the Point to Point course for a canter up the Point to Point Car Park field. Perfect for anyone with concerns about their brakes! It is aimed at those confident hacking in a group. Names please to alison@obhpc.co.uk

Hunting
After Christmas don’t miss the Children’s Meet at 11am on Weds 28th Dec  As with all Meets the exact venue will be confirmed 5 days in advance but it will be somewhere suitable for all abilities including those on the lead rein and is particularly aimed at children that have not hunted before. For those children (and parents) that regularly hunt – and coaches – it would be lovely to see you there too to assist with newcomers. Correct dress is beige jobs, shirt and PC tie with hacking jacket, or stock and black / navy jacket for older members, with ponies plaited, however we would rather see you out and comfortable than staying at home because you can’t plait or don’t have the right jacket. If it is cold or wet it is absolutely fine to wear a warmer coat or waterproofs. Please have your parent’s number in your pocket (not just on your phone) and we ask parents to stay in the area or follow on foot. It is helpful if you can email vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk to let her know you are coming so she can notify you of any last minute changes if there is adverse weather.

For older members – Area 9 training and lunge test 
A Test Training has proved to be very popular so Area 9 has arranged another training day on Monday 13th February 10.00 – 12.30 at Rectory Farm.
There will be a Lunge Test for members 16+ who already hold B Test.
Show Jump Training with Richard Waygood Friday 17th February at Rectory Farm.
Show Jump Training on 26th March at Rectory Farm with Spencer Sturmey at Rectory Farm.
Please book Area 9 training and tests with Julie Crew julie@jcrew.plus.com. Early booking very strongly recommended.

Summer Camp dates
Dates for 2017 Camps are now on the website http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/camps/
You will see that there is a little more flexibility on ages to allow members more choice in when to move up to the next Camp and we have introduced a new Tiny Trotters Camp aimed at our youngest members.

Specialist Camps
Following the success of last Easter’s eventing camp we will run two eventing camps in 2017 to ensure we can accomodate everyone.
SJ and Dressage Camps – would your child be interested in a specialist SJ or Dressage Camp? Please register interest with alison@obhpc.co.uk

PC Jackets
We will be putting in an order for warm, waterproof PC jackets later this week. They are £48 and the price includes adding a name under the logo if you pre-order.
They will be available from White Horse Feeds in Childrey in early January. Please pre-order if you would like us to put aside the right size for you or for your FREE personalisation – alison@obhpc.co.uk.
3-4, 5-6, 7-8, 9-10, 11-12 or adult sizes 32, 34, 36. Payment on collection from White Horse Feeds by cheque only please.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!

Alison

November 2016 Update

Christmas Rallies
We have a lovely choice of fun Christmas rallies during the holidays, so please book early so that organisers have all the chocolate and mince pies they will need. While these rallies may not be the most obvious step towards equestrian Olympic success, they are the ones that memories are made of, and over the years it is clear that the riders that do these fun rallies are the riders that are still enjoying their horses well in to their teens.

Wooly Coats
For those with field kept ponies please don’t feel that your ponies need to be perfectly polished for rallies now that they are growing their winter coats. Equally we would prefer that members are warm and dry so they can enjoy their riding even if it means sacrificing a bit of their usual style!

The Beach Ride
The 2016 Beach Ride over half term will go down in OBHPC history as “the year it rained”. Well done to the brave parents that turned up in torrential rain, to the riders with huge grins galloping on the sand and the parents – in particular Keith Peplar – who dug and towed the horse boxes and trailers out of saturated sand when they started to sink….  For those who were concerned about the effect of salt water on tack, it really was well rinsed off. We look forward to do it all again next year!

Hunting
The hunting season has started and all OBH Pony Club members are welcome and encouraged to come along to any Meet. The address for each Meet is sent to hunt subscribers 5 days in advance so simply email our PC Hunt Rep Vanessa Kilgour (vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk ) to find out what is coming up. For those who hunt regularly you may prefer to ask Richard Holt, the hunt secretary (r-holt@hotmail.co.uk) to add you to the list but please CC Vanessa when emailing so she can verify that you are PC members.
We have a number of really good Mentors who would love to see more members out and will look after unaccompanied children to teach them what hunting is all about. This is not intended to be a “babysitting” service so members must be in control in all paces, and parents will need to stay nearby in case of problems. Vanessa will happily match you with a suitable mentor; whether you want to jump or not, or whether  you want to learn about how the hounds work, learn about traditions and etiquette or just to have someone to talk to.
Pony Club members pay a special rate of £20 (£10 for 12 and under).

Children’s Meet
There will be a special Children’s Meet on Wednesday 28th December 2016 and during February half term. For those that hunt regularly this is your chance to help the Master and whipper-in and for those that have never hunted this is the perfect opportunity to give it a go and there will be plenty of adults to help you get the most from the day. All welcome, younger children and those on lead rein will need to bring their own helper!

Awards Night
Our annual Awards Night will be on Saturday 11th February at the lovely new Letcombe Regis Village Hall. It is always a lovely evening, looking back at the thrills, spills and member achievements of the past year, so do put the date in your diary now.

Camps
Our residential Hartpury Camp will be 30th July – 4th August 2017.
We are finalising dates for our other Camps but they are likely to be the weeks immediately before and after Senior Camp and the confirmed dates will be on the website next week.

Our thanks to White Horse Feeds in Childrey for their ongoing support and sponsorship. In addition to feed, supplements and all the equipment you need for horse and rider, they have a great selection of gifts perfect for Xmas. They also sell the full range of OBHPC kit including the new style warm winter coats.
 
Keep warm,
 
Alison
 

October 2016 Update

Dates for 2017
Area 9 dates for tests and team events are now available. See the schedules / fixtures page for details. The Old Berks will be hosting the Area SJ as well as the Dengie SJ next year so be sure to put 15th July in your diary now. As soon as we have confirmation of dates from Hartpury, which rely on the BE calendar, we will be able to confirm all of our camp dates.

Hunting
Half term is the last opportunity for some autumn hunting, which tends to be at a slower pace until the proper season starts early in November, so is a great introduction for children. Contact Vanessa to check where and when upcoming meets will be or to be put in touch with one of our hunting mentors. v.kilgour@yahoo.co.uk 

Second Hand Kit
We will be having a clear out of Second Hand Kit later this month and propose to donate items to the Blue Cross if they have been in stock for some time and are unlikely to sell. If you have anything you don’t want us to donate please let Vicki know. vicki@clifford-jones.co.uk 

For older members
In addition to our branch rallies you will have received an email this week with some more specialist rallies in Area 9. Book fast as they always oversubscribe.
We will be running a Stage 2 Coaching Course on Nov 6th for members aged 16+ who have completed over 40 hours of coaching since passing their Stage 1 course. To book email alison@guidesforbrides.co.uk

Olympia 
We have just 6 tickets left for the Sunday afternoon performance and the entire show is now otherwise sold out. If you would like to join the group please let Sophie know. sophie@pearce1017fslife.co.uk

Half term rallies
There is a great choice of rallies next week including a couple of opportunities for parent participation on the Beach Ride and at the Lynham XC rally.

Our newsletter is kindly sponsored by White Horse Feeds Ltd, Foxhill Farm, Childrey  www.whitehorsefeeds.com – for all your horse feed, stable equipment and rider accessories. They have a full range of PC sweatshirts, rugby shirts, XC base layers and the new winter coats so stock up now before the weather turns cold.

Have a great half term!

Alison

 

September 2016 Update

Olympia 
With children back at school it is time to think of the annual OBHPC trip to Olympia. We have some great tickets in Block 14 for the afternoon performance on Sunday 18th December. They are £62.75 per person, with return bus from Wantage or Abingdon for £10 per person. Please email sophie@pearce1017.fslife.co.uk within the next 7 days, but as soon as possible. We always sell out!
 
Blenheim Eventers Challenge
Well done to our 1m team of Chiara, Flora, Max and Niamh who led the Pony Club Eventers Challenge for most of last Friday with an impressive team score of 372 out of a possible 375. They were beaten into 2nd place by just one point – or 0.5 of a second – towards the very end of the competition.
 
Area 9 SJ Championships
Well done to all our competitors who qualified for the Area 9 SJ Championships; we had some great results throughout the day and a WIN in the final class of the day for the team of Lila, Izzie, Scarlett and Sophie.
 
PC Championships, Tetrathlon Championships, Polo Championships and Grassroots Regional Championships
We had great success across all disciplines and at all levels at last month’s Championships – far to many to mention here. Former DC, Sue Cobham, summed it up in a letter saying “Every time I open Horse & Hound I see pictures of beaming OBHPC members waving rosettes or clutching silver cups”. Most importantly we saw some great team work with members and parents supporting each other and having fun together.
 
Mini ODE
Tor Coxhead and her team ran a fantastic Mini ODE at Lyford Stud earlier this month. It was a really fun, friendly day with competitors from numerous branches, and will hopefully become a regular fixture on our calendar. 
 
SJ Painting
After a busy summer our show jumps are in need of a bit of TLC and we need your help! If you haven’t been able to volunteer for anything else this summer this is your chance to do your bit. Details of two jump painting sessions will follow by email over the next week. Please look out for the email.
 
Volunteers Supper
And for those that have been working hard a throughout the year, running camps or rallies or making another significant contribution, look out for your invitation for the volunteers’ supper on Thursday 13th October. It is our opportunity to say thank you for all the time you give.
 

Mounted Games

After the success of the Junior team who reached the Zone Finals this summer, we are hoping to have teams for Junior, Senior and Lead-rein for next spring. If you are interested in giving it a go get in touch with Emma Jenning on emmajennings131@icloud.com and come along to some of the Friday sessions.

 
Team chasing
We will be sending a novice team to the Berkeley team chase on 2nd October and there is space for more members (aged 12+) to get involved. To find out more contact: emmaaird@btinternet.com.
 
Autumn Hunting
Autumn hunting has started. Some of the Saturday Meets are in the afternoon which tends to be a better option for children than the usual dawn start. If you would like to check where the next Meet is just email vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk
We have a number of Hunting Mentors who would love to help introduce our members to hunting, or help children already hunting to get more out of their day. Vanessa can put you in touch; please do use them – they are there to help.
The hunt have a couple of fixtures that members may want to get involved in:
Sunday 25th September – Gatejumping and Equine boot sale
Sunday 16th October HT at Wickstead
Full details of both are on www.oldberkshunt.co.uk
 
Our newsletter is kindly sponsored by White Horse Feeds Ltd, Foxhill Farm, Childrey  www.whitehorsefeeds.com – for all your horse feed, stable equipment and rider accessories.
They have a full range of PC sweatshirts, rugby shirts, XC base layers and the new winter coats so stock up now before the weather turns cold.
 
I hope you are enjoying the lovely September weather,
 
All the best
Alison
 

August 2016 Update

Wow! What a month the Old Berks have had!3 fantastic camps with lots of very happy children enjoying their ponies, challenging themselves and having lots of fun. Our thanks go to the incredibly hard-working camp leaders and also our fantastic instructors who throw their hearts and souls into the camp spirit.At Mini Camp the well established team of Lucy, Emma and Pam ran their final camp together as a team with their customary enthusiasm, efficiency and sense of fun that ensured parents had as much fun as the children. Facebook was full of photos of happy children and colourful ponies all having a great three days and culminating in a lovely parade. We really hope to see the trio back together in the future!Michelle, Jonathan, Claire and Sandra had an incredible 68 members at Junior Camp this year. The slick organisation was something to behold with instructors, coaches and volunteers all carefully timetabled to ensure that members and their ponies could enjoy all that Wickstead offers. I particularly take my hat off to the Junior Camp team who, despite having record numbers during the day, re-introduced a night of camping for those moving on the Senior Camp next year.Joanna took over the reins at Senior Camp, ably assisted by Joy, Jill and Caroline. With most 12 year olds staying an extra year at Junior Camp we enjoyed lower numbers at Hartpury, enabling us to offer a flexible afternoon programme which gave us a real insight in what members really enjoy – a lot of which didn’t involve saddles. 17 members took, and passed, C Test and we ran a successful program under Caroline’s watchful eye with 6 of our coaches taking on the role of stable managers.To prepare for Camps Lisa and her team ran a great Elmwood Big Rally with a great range of activities to get everyone warmed up for the summer. It also served as final team training for some of our teams, and what a summer the teams are having!If anything is testament to the importance of training it is the results our teams have had this year.
In dressage, SJ and eventing, teams or individuals qualified for the Championships in every level we entered and our teams won both the Mini and Junior eventing Areas.
3 members qualified for the Tetrathlon Championships.Well done to all those that have qualified for one of the three Championship weekends; we hope you enjoy a great weekend of competition, team work and camaraderie. Thank you to our incredibly hard working team managers and instructors for all you have done to help so many children achieve their dreams.Last, but by no means least, the OBHPC Jorrocks team won the U11 section at the Polo Championships. In the past the OBH were well known on the PC polo circuit and it is lovely to see  our younger members doing so well.Enjoy the rest of the holidays, and don’t forget to give your busy ponies an occasional day off!AlisonOur Newsletter is kindly sponsored by White Horse Feeds in Childrey who can equip you with all your feed and stable requirements and have a new supply of OBHPC XC skins and jackets available now.
 

July 2016 Update

Firstly, an apology for the number of emails we have sent out recently. HQ have updated their database and we don’t yet have the facility to just send emails  to the relevant members. That will be resolved soon, but in the meantime please accept our apologies.

 
Elmwood Big Rally
120 members will be at the Elmwood Big Rally on Thursday for a fun day of riding, picnics and ice-cream to start the holidays. Our apologies for the handful of children whose schools have broken up very late – the following week is Senior Camp so sadly we couldn’t hold it any later.
 
New Kit
We have some great new kit coming in ready to try on and buy at Elmwood, and available from White Horse Feeds after that.
The range will include long sleeve base layers, suitable for all ages. They are a quick drying high performance fabric so perfect for XC rallies, camps and competitions and available for all ages. Boys will be delighted to hear that we have reversed the colours; they are navy blue, with OLD BERKS in pale blue on the sleeve.
For older members we are adding a more fitted jacket to the range, available in winter or summer weights, and a high performance fitted polo shirt.
 
High Flyers
A huge well done to three of our members this month on International selections; John Church has been selected for the Pony Club Tetrathlon team competing in Ireland; Niamh Warburton is Reserve for the Pony Europeans in Denmark and Becca Bell is on her way to Spain with the GB Junior Dressage Team having successfully made the transitions from ponies to horses since last summer. It must seem a long time since their days in Minis to these members, but that is where all three started.
 
Mounted Games Zones
Our Mounted Games squad had a great day at the Zone Finals this month, making it into the finals for the first 3 races and finishing 10th overall. They will be recruiting new members in the hope of a Junior and Senior team for next year to make a bid to get to the Championships.
 
Badminton dressage
12 members competed at Badminton in the PC Dressage Championships this week, with all 12 finishing in the top 10 across the 2 classes. Our teams of Verity, Erin, Zoe and Jake, Izzie, George finishing 4th and 8th with Jake finishing 8th in the Ride-Off and Sasha winning the Open Warm-Up class.
 
Area Competitions
Good luck to our Area teams who will be competing in SJ this Sunday, Dressage on Wednesday, Eventing next Saturday. We have 72 members competing in total; keep up with the results by liking OBHPC on Facebook. www.facebook.com/obhpc
 
Over half our members will be at Camps over the next few weeks; have a fantastic time and enjoy the start of the summer holidays!
 
Alison
 
Our newsletter is kindly sponsored by White Horse Feeds Ltd, Foxhill Farm, Childrey  www.whitehorsefeeds.com – for all your horse feed, stable equipment and rider accessories.

June 2016 Update

Camps
Junior Camp is fully booked. If you would like to be added to the waiting list please contact the organisers as soon as possible.
Mini and Senior Camp both have limited space left.
 
Teams
Team long lists are on the website for SJ, Dressage and Eventing. Please check to see if your name is on there! Final deadline for entries for SJ teams is this Friday with Eventing and Dressage soon after, so if you haven’t done so since lists were sent out on Friday, if you are on the long list PLEASE contact the discipline managers to re-confirm your availability, book into at least one team training session, and confirm your horse / pony’s name. If you are no longer available to compete, or cannot attend any training, please let us know so you can be removed from the list.
 
Stainswick Show
Joanna Lambert’s wonderful no-plaits, no-stress Stainswick Show is on Saturday 25th June. This is a fantastic show with lots for young or novice members, and there are SJ classes up to 85cm with qualifiers for the Rectory Farm SJ Championships. The 85cm class won’t be before 3pm, and it would be great to see some of our Junior team hopefuls there.
Elmwood Big Rally
It is time to book in for the Elmwood Big Rally! It is on Thursday 21st July and we hope that as many members as possible will be there. It is particularly important to attend if you are going to be at Mini or Junior Camp, or your first year at Senior Camp, as it enables us to ensure everyone is in the right ride for Camps. It will also be a key training date for the Mini and Junior Eventing teams.
To book – simply choose 2 (or just one if you would prefer) activities from the list below, stating the height/level you would prefer, and email lisasmith@bensmithandsons.co.uk – as soon as possible!
This year the rally will be a “Bring a Friend” day. If you have a friend who isn’t a member of Pony Club, invite them to come along and join in the fun. Simply forward this to them so they can book direct with Lisa. 
As before, in addition to your two riding sessions there will be plenty of opportunities to spend time with your PC friends, have a picnic and eat icecream!
  • SJ – Mini On or Off Lead Rein, 50-60cm, 60-70cm, 70-80cm, 80-90cm, 90-100cm, 1m+
  • XC – Mini On or Off Lead Rein, 50-65cm, 70-80cm, 85-95cm, 1m+
  • Flatwork – Mini, Junior, Senior (12+)
  • Dressage (bring a test to ride) – Mini, Junior, Senior
  • Mounted Games – Mini On or Off Lead Rein, Junior
  • Handy Pony – Mini On or Off Lead Rein, Junior
  • Treasure Hunt – Mini On or Off Lead Rein, Junior
  • Eventing Team training sessions – Mini (60-70cm), Junior (80cm), Novice (90-95cm) covering Dressage, SJ and XC

 

Junior Show
The Junior Show earlier this month was a great success. We have had some lovely comments from judges, delighted by how polite children, parents and ponies were. Sower Hill is a great venue and we are very grateful to the Soden family for hosting us, as well as organisers Lisa Powell, Helen Keen, Caroline Norton-White and their committee for their hard work which ensured that members and visitor all had a great day AND raised more than £1500 for branch funds to help subsidise rallies throughout the year.
 
PC Coats, Polo Shirts, Sweatshirts and Saddlepads
White Horse Feeds in Childrey will be placing an order for PC Coats in the next couple of weeks. They have the new logo with OBHPC below and your name if you would like it to be personalised, and OLD BERKS on the back. To order please call Maureen or Lynda at White Horse Feeds on 01235 751529.
They also have a supply of sweatshirts and polo shirts in all sizes in stock, and will be receiving a new delivery of OBHPC saddle pads in the next few days. Please remember they can only accept payment by cheque or cash for PC items as they stock them on our behalf.
 
Enjoy the last weeks of term; the holidays are nearly here!
 
Alison
 
Our newsletter is kindly sponsored by White Horse Feeds Ltd, Foxhill Farm, Childrey  www.whitehorsefeeds.com – for all your horse feed, stable equipment and rider accessories.
 
Fixtures – there are an incredible 58 activities on offer over the next 6 weeks to ensure that ponies (and members!) are fit and ready for the summer. Please book in as early as possible to make life easier for our busy rally organisers and instructors. 
 

MAY 2016 Update

Ready for the summer?

Too hot, too cold, rugs on, rugs off, too little grass, too much grass. With the erratic Spring weather it is a real challenge to get the balance right to ensure horses and ponies are feeling at their best in time for a busy summer, but one of the benefits of being a Pony Club member is the access to free advice whenever you want it. There are various people here to call on, starting with our instructors who are all incredibly knowledgeable and who you all hopefully know well enough to discuss any concerns with – and vice versa. Alternatively Fiona Jack (07879 854712), Tussell Humphrey (07975 986270) and Ros Hayward (07702 959869) are always happy to help. For advice on getting the right balance when it comes to feeding, White Horse Feeds (01235 751529) can give specialist advice.

 
Congratulations
Well done to our Mounted Games team: Lara, Scarlett, Daisy, Gabriel and Charleigh, who finished as runners up at the Areas so have qualified for the Zone Finals in July.
Well done also to Lauren Obosi and Honor McFarlane who both competed in the Mitsubishi Motors Cup at Badminton with a huge crowd of OBHPC supporters cheering them on.
 
Olympia
Tickets are now available for Olympia for the afternoon performance on Sunday 18th December. The organisers are unable to offer any discounts for the weekend performances this year as they sell out so early, however we have a great assignment of tickets for what is possibly the best performance of the week, and it is alwanys a great trip. The cost is £62.75 per person, with return bus from Wantage or Abingdon available at £10 per person. Please email sophie@pearce1017.fslife.co.uk to reserve your tickets as soon as possible and send her a cheque before the end of the month.
 
Camps
Booking is now open for all three summer camps so please get your forms in and come and join in the fun. We have worked hard to keep prices as low as last year which is great value for excellent instruction and great facilities. The tetrathlon camp in June is fully booked.
 
New Members
There is a national recruitment drive to encourage new members to join Pony Club so we have two opportunities for potential members to see what we are all about. If you know anyone aged 8 or under who might want to join, Amelia is running a fun and games rally on Tuesday 1st June at Oldfield Farmhouse with games, a treasure hunt, handy pony and a picnic. We hope that lots of our members will be there, so please book in and encourage any non-members you know to come in. Please book with Amelia by email: ameliamacpherson@yahoo.co.uk
The Big Elmwood Rally on 21st July will be a “bring a friend” rally so feel free to encourage non-members of all ages to come along for a trial session. Book in with Lisa Smith: lisasmith@bensmithandsons.co.uk
 
Junior Show and Mini ODE
Our fabulous 12s and Under Show is at Sower Hill on Sunday 5th June.
The Mini ODE is at Lyford Stud on Saturday 2nd July with jumps at 50cm and 60cms.
Schedules for both, plus details for lots of other local shows and events, are on our schedules page: http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/schedules
 
Good Luck
Good luck to all our members competing for their schools at Stonar tomorrow, and well done to those who competed for their schools at Royal Windsor today.
 
And finally, Hannah Richardson and her pony Kit have been having the time of their lives at Royal Windsor all this week, meeting the Queen and playing her as a young princess in the Parade every evening. We’ll be adding more photos to Facebook as they become available. www.facebook.com/OBHPC
 
For those with GCSEs, AS Levels and A Levels this month, good luck!
 
Alison
 
Our newsletter is kindly sponsored by White Horse Feeds Ltd, Foxhill Farm, Childrey  www.whitehorsefeeds.com – for all your horse feed, stable equipment and rider accessories.
 

APRIL  2016 Update

This month we have been devastated by news of Bonnie Armitage’s tragic death while riding her beloved pony, Lindsay. While her family face the future without her, they have taken comfort from so many beautiful tributes on social media, from our members, and then the wider equestrian world, showing their support by using the blueforbonnie hashtag.
Representatives of the Old Berks, Cotswold and Beaufort Pony Clubs are honouring Bonnie with blue armbands at official events this month and our mounted games team, which she was part of last year, will be leading the junior competitors in a moment of silent reflection at their Areas on Sunday.
When the time is right, we will discuss a lasting tribute to mark Bonnie’s time with us.
 
Horse & Pony Care
Our Horse & Pony Care teams triumphed at the Areas this month, coming 1st in the Senior competition and 1st and 2nd in the Junior competition. Huge congratulations to Shannon Lewis, Rosie Mason, Holly Mason, Eleanor Hubbard, Ophelia Spracklen and Fenella Mathieson who will be heading to the Championships in August, and Henry Jennings, Jessie Saunders and Thea Hubbard who are hoping to have been the highest scoring runners-up to secure their place at the Championships too.
 
Pony Racing
It was great to see so many pony club jockeys competing at the pony races at the OBH point to point and dominating the winner’s podium at the neighbouring point to point at Hackwood Park. Well done to all. Next year the OBH are hoping to put on some races open specifically for pony club ponies.
 
Novice Team Chasing
Our team of Toby, Sasha, Lottie and Estelle finished on an impressive score of zero at the Avon Vale team chase last week, coming 4th over a challenging course in deep mud. If you would like to join them in the autumn please contact Emma Aird.
 
Coming up…..
 
Mounted Games
Good luck for the Areas at the Four Counties Showground on Sunday to Lara Marsh, Gabriel Jennings, Scarlett Starkey, Charleigh Pettit and Daisy Chugg. Romilly McIntosh has been a key team member, but a change of pony has meant missing the competition for this year.
 
Badminton Mitsubishi Cup
Good luck to Honor McFarlane and Ziggy who will be competing for the Mitsubishi Cup (previously known as the Grassroots Championships) at Badminton next month.
 
Camps
Booking opens for Mini, Junior and Senior Camps on 1st May. It is a huge help to organisers if you can book early;  we will be able to guarantee places for all members booking by 1st June into the appropriate Camp and will try our best to accommodate those booking later, especially for mini camp.
 
Tetrathlon Camp
Booking is open for the joint OBHPC and VWHPC tetrathlon camp weekend at Boomerang in June. It is the ideal opportunity to improve your skills, give tetrathlon a go if you haven’t tried it before, and spend time with pony club friends. Email Annabel Saunders to book your space: maxsultan77@googlemail.com
 
Blenheim Eventers Challenge
We are delighted to have made it through the ballot for the Blenheim 100cm Team Eventer Challenge on Friday 9th September. The team to represent the OBH will be selected nearer the time.
 
A Princess in our Midst
Those who have been keeping an eye on Facebook may have spotted that the search for a Princess for the Queen’s 90th birthday celebrations ended here in the OBHPC. Very well done to Hannah and her pony Kit who were competing against members from all over the UK for this honour. They have an exciting week of rehearsals and performances to look forward to in Windsor next month.
 
And finally …
You will be able to see a number of our mini and junior members in a BBC documentary later this year. After lots of top secret screen tests and interviews they spent three days filming with a film crew of twenty at Boomerang over Easter. Details will follow once we know the screening dates.
 
Our newsletter is kindly sponsored by White Horse Feeds Ltd, Foxhill Farm, Childrey  www.whitehorsefeeds.com – for all your horse feed, stable equipment and rider accessories.
 
 

MARCH  2016 Update

We are looking forward to seeing lots of you at the Dengie SJ Finals at Hartpury on Sunday. We are hosting the competition, so huge thanks go to all those who are assisting on the day and the night before, and particularly to Claire Lisi and Helen Keen for running the event.

Grassroots Championships
This year, in addition to the main Cholmondley Championships there will be Pony Club Regional Grassroots Championships at Rectory Farm on 27th August (Dressage – PC Grassroots Test 2016) & 28th August (SJ – 80cm).
Teams will be able qualify in the relevant classes at the Area 9 Dressage (27th July) and Area Show Jumping (17th July), the top 10 teams at each competition will qualify for the Regional Grassroots Championships.
This competition is open to any age of member with any size of horse or pony, but riders must not have represented their Branch at Novice level or above. Please let Amelia (dressage) and Claire (SJ) know if you are interested in taking part.

Spurs Permission
You should have received your blue Members’ Reference Book in the post, along with your membership card. If you need Spurs Permission please send your membership card and an SAE to me for signing, or bring it to the Dengie SJ on Sunday.

Advice on spurs permission is here: http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/useful-information-for-new-members/wearing-spurs/

 
C+ and B Test Assessments
For those thinking of taking their C+ or B Tests this summer please get your name down ASAP with Fiona Jack. There are ridden assessments on 31/3 and 7/4 and it is important for you to attend one (or both) so that you know what you need to work on before the tests. There will be a Boot Camp at the end of August for final polishing for B Test (and C+ space permitting) but these tests both need a fair amount of preparation before then.
 
Mini ODE
We will be holding a Mini ODE at Lyford Stud on Saturday 2nd July. The Schedule is here: http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/files/2014/03/Mini-ODE.pdf
 
New PC Logo
At the Pony Club conference this month the new logo was unveiled as part of a complete re-branding of Pony Club. You can see the new logo on the HQ site, however the transition will take a significant amount of time. We will continue to stock clothing with the existing logo for now, particularly as they still haven’t finalised the new design.
 
And finally, if any over 12’s, with a parent, can spare a couple of hours next Wednesday or Thursday to re-paint the point-to-point runner and rider boards, Henry Allenby would really appreciate your help. If you can spare a couple of hours please call Henry on 07775 678254.
 
Our newsletter is kindly sponsored by White Horse Feeds Ltd, Foxhill Farm, Childrey  www.whitehorsefeeds.com – for all your horse feed, stable equipment and rider accessories.
 
 

February 2016 Update

According to new statistics from headquarters, Old Berks Hunt is now the second largest pony club in the UK. That is all down to having such enthusiastic members, parents and volunteers getting involved in supporting an incredibly wide range of activities.
 

Awards Night

Well done to all of the winners at our annual Awards last Friday. We were delighted that Mel Jones flew back from Ireland for the weekend to receive a Lifetime Award, having taught for the OBHPC for 25 years. Lucinda was presented with an apple tree as thanks from us all for the time she dedicated to the branch as a Joint DC. Jasmine Humphries has kindly donated a wonderful plaque in memory of her horse Molly which was presented this year to Henry Jennings for his involvement in all areas of Pony Club life. Member of the Year went to Jack Whiteford in recognition of his high level of horsemanship demonstrated in the Areas, at the Championships and in his B Test – as well as for his excellent sense of fashion!
The full list of winners, and the public version of the video of 2015, are on www.facebook.com/obhpc
 
Teams and Tests
During the Awards evening we discussed teams and tests for the coming year to avoid the need for the annual “Teams and Tests Meeting” now that all of the information is online. 
 
Accounts
The evening also gave members the opportunity to view our annual accounts; if you weren’t there and would like to see a copy please email me. Our balance is looking healthy so we will be able to continue to subsidise rallies and training. 
 
Eventing Camp
The two day eventing camp at Easter is fully booked. If you missed out this year we expect to repeat it next year.
 
Area 9 Quiz
Good luck to our Quiz team at the Areas next weekend. It is the first time we have entered a team for a few years so we look forward to hearing all about it.
 

Dengie Show Jumping

If you haven’t already entered, the Indoor SJ we are running in the International Arena at Hartpury on 20th March is filling very fast so please enter now! There are classes from 75cm to 110cms for teams and individuals and for most classes you don’t need to have qualified in order to enter. If you don’t have a full team don’t worry, we will put teams together as entries come in. http://branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire/files/2014/03/Hartpury-schedule-2016-f3-1.pdf
 
If you aren’t all exhausted from a packed schedule of rallies over half term, the fixture list for the next month is below.
 
Enjoy the rest of half term,
 
Alison
 
Our newsletter is kindly sponsored by White Horse Feeds Ltd, Foxhill Farm, Childrey  www.whitehorsefeeds.com – for all your horse feed, stable equipment and rider accessories.
 

January 2016 Update

Awards Night
We are gearing up for our annual Awards Night on Friday 12th February. If you have any great photos taken during the year that show what the OBHPC is all about we would love to include them. Please email high resolution images to erica.louise.howe@gmail.com. We have had a request for a “Big Break” award this year, restricted to those that broke a bone as a result of their pony activities – not necessarily while riding. So if you are unlucky enough to *fall* into that category, please dig out a photo and email it to Erica.
  
Calling potential Coaches
There will be a Step 1 Coaching course again this Easter for members aged 16+ who would like to get involved in teaching younger members. The expectation is that Coaches have already passed their C+ Test however exceptions will be considered. It is a one day course after which you will be able to start assisting at rallies to gain experience before taking the Step 2 and Step 3 courses. If you are interested please email alison@obhpc.co.uk
 
Horseball
Back by popular request, our first horseball rally will be on Wednesday 17th February at Malthouse. It would be great to have some of the “old hands” who have played before to come and show the younger members how it’s done.
 
Polocrosse taster day
Take your horseball skills one step further with a polocrosse taster day at Hartpury on Friday 19th February. Your pony will need to wear bandages or protective boots but no other equipment is needed. See the fixtures list for details.
 
Pony Racing
Described by previous competitors as “a chance in a lifetime” the Lockinge point-to-point gives members the opportunity to experience racing their own pony, on the flat. The point-to-point is on Easter Monday 28th March and there will be two pony races, both of which are 7 furlongs – roughly half way round the course. Competitors are briefed and taken on a course walk before parading in the main ring and being escorted to the start. After the race the highest placed ponies return to the winners enclosure – just as they would after the main races. And yes, there is betting on the race results!
13.2hh and under for children aged between 9 – 11 years 
14.2hh and under for children aged between 12 – 15 years 
Only 8 competitors are allowed in each section with priority going to OBHPC members and we are really hoping that this year there will be enough members to make it an OBHPC race, particularly in the 13.2hh section. Henry Allenby is kindly sponsoring a prize for the highest placed member in each race. 
If you are interested in taking part please contact Do Curtis joannacurtis@upperfarm.uk.com. She will send you all the information you need and dates of the gallops rallies to help get ponies really fit.
 

Life after the C Test?
If you are thinking about moving on to take your C+ or B test, plan ahead and book your Pony Club Road Rider or BHS Riding and Road Safety Test now. You need to have one of these tests under your belt before you can take your C+ or B test.   The BHS one is the most suitable if you are ultimately planning to take your A Test, and it is recognised outside of Pony Club, however there are limited BHS centres offering it. The Pony Club equivalent is a shorter, less expensive course but availability is strictly limited so apply early. The dates for this year are 27/6/16 theory and 3/7/16 ridden assessment. For details or to book contact Tussel Humphrey: info@brookfarmcottages.com

 
Our team of rally organisers have been working on some great rallies for the Spring, many of which are already on the Fixtures list below.
 
Keep warm!
Alison
 

December 2015 Update

The last schools have broken up today so Christmas has officially started!  The highlight of the holidays for younger members will be the Minis Christmas Hack on Sunday 27th December. This will be a relaxed amble in walk and trot for those on or off lead-rein, across Fawley Stud’s fields and countryside, hunting for chocolates and goodies as you go. The perfect way to burn off a mince pie or two for parents too! Please contact Erica Howe to book. erica.louise.howe@gmail.com
 
The Children’s Meet is at 11am on Monday 28th December. It is suitable for all ages and abilities, including lead rein, and there will be plenty of jumping for older members keen to challenge themselves. Mounted parents are welcome if they are leading / assisting their children but otherwise the Meet is aimed at children and mentors. While your child is hunting please stay either in the lorry park or follow on foot / in a car.
What to wear: beige jods, shirt and pony club tie, hacking jacket or a warm riding coat (your pony club coat is fine) and a dark plain silk on your hat. Back protectors are strongly recommended. In your pocket you should have your parents’ telephone numbers on a piece of card (even if you have a mobile phone), and a chocolate bar too if it fits. Ponies should be clean and plaited.
The exact location of the Meet will be sent out 5 days in advance so please email our Hunting rep Vanessa Kilgour for details, or if you would like any other details of this Meet or any other. vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk
 

Dates for senior camp are now confirmed as the 25th – 29th July, with arrival on the evening of Sunday 24th and departure at lunchtime on the 29th. We received some really helpful feedback from the recent senior camp surveys and as a result we will be offering some specialist rides for 2016 including a C+/B Test preparation group, a specialist dressage group and a “countryside” group, as well as the 16+ group which proved so popular last year. The countryside group will be aimed at those members who are keen to come to camp and have an active and interesting week but don’t necessarily want to spend every moment with their pony. Further details will follow, or speak to Joanna Lambert for more information. jrjlambert@aol.com

You may have noticed that the Area Dressage falls on the Wednesday of senior camp, however it is at Kemerton Hall this year, just off the M5 and only 30 minutes from Hartpury so plans are being made to make sure members don’t have to miss out on either.
If you were at senior camp last summer and haven’t completed the survey please do it now. Your feedback is really important to us and makes a difference to how camp is run. This is the web address for the survey, and it should now work for a second child from the same household: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/7HMW5CF
 
Don’t forget to put the Awards Night in your diary for Friday 12th February. It is a lovely opportunity to catch up with friends, see a round up of the past year and see who wins the increasingly ridiculous awards we will be coming up with.
One such award will be the Sock award, this year sponsored by SoxTrot who have offered 5 pairs of their fabulous american riding socks to whoever comes up with the most creative photo featuring their socks. If you have already got a pair, now is the time to get creative, simply take a photo and upload it to Facebook https://www.facebook.com/OBHPC. If not, you might want to get a pair of socks on your Christmas list! http://www.soxtrotuk.com
 
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
 
Alison & Lucinda

 

November 2015 Update

Winter is definitely upon us and rallies are moving indoors with a focus on trying out new things and consolidating all that members learnt over the busy summer months.

A number of our under 10s have submitted screen tests and are waiting for news of whether our branch will be chosen to feature in a BBC documentary next year. At the other end of our age spectrum some of our Coaches will be taking the next steps in their training in order to qualify to teach SJ and XC to our younger members.

The hunting season has started. Check with Vanessa Kilgour (vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk) if you would like to know where the Meet is on a particular date. PC members wearing their PC badge are entitled to a discounted rate of £10 per day, or £5 for under 12, but please remember to go and find the secretary as soon as you arrive at the Meet and don’t leave it for them to come and ask for your cap. Dismounted parents must follow on foot or in a vehicle or remain in touch and nearby.

Camp dates for next summer have now all been confirmed. See www.obhpc.co.uk for more details.

We are delighted to welcome two new Assistant District Commissioners to assist in the smooth running of the Branch. Both are well known to many of our members and will each bring a new set of skills to our committee: James Gardiner will help oversee team selection, branch logistics, fundraising and our events as well as being our Health & Safety Officer.  Joanna Lambert will help oversee the co-ordination of tests and hunting and be a point of contact for members looking for or selling ponies, as well as heading up the Senior Camp team.

We have also taken this opportunity to look at the committee structure, re-introducing a small “decision-making” committee voted in to serve a three year term, to run alongside our team of rally organisers.  These rally organisers really are the life-blood of the Branch and we are pleased to have a number of new faces joining the experienced team. We can boldly say that we are approaching 2016 with a refreshed and enthusiastic team with lots of exciting plans and ideas.

Rally dates to the end of December are below and please come along to support the Pony Club Xmas Coffee Morning next Tuesday 24th November from 10am-12pm in Sophie Sayer’s barn; Warren Down House, Letcombe Bassett.

Best wishes

Alison & Lucinda

 

October 2015 Update

There is definitely an autumn feel in the air and as the clocks go back and we have less opportunity to ride after school, demand for spaces at rallies suddenly increase, so please be considerate to rally organisers and book in as early as you can so they can plan their groups.

Details of half term Autumn hunting have been circulated, and if you would like further information please contact our hunting rep, Vanessa Kilgour (vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk). For those aged 12+ and working towards their hunting badge, or those just keen to learn more about hunting, we have a number of mentors that you can be paired up with on the hunting field. For children hunting for the first time, on a new horse, or for parents wanting some peace of mind, we now have an instructor who is happy to escort and instruct on the hunting field for a couple of hours on a one-to-one basis. Vanessa Kilgour will be happy to put you in touch.

Our newly formed Team Chasing squad had their first outing last weekend and stormed home with huge smiles, more than a minute inside the bogey time. They will be heading out again on the 8th November (perhaps with more effective brakes?) with 2 teams in the 3ft Novice class which again is judged on a bogey time. If you are interested in joining them please email Emma Aird (emmaaird@btinternet.com) for details.
 
There is a tetrathlon Postal Shoot again this winter, so anyone wanting to improve their shooting skills with some friendly competition, contact Fred Church for details. He can also give you details of the Triathlons coming up later this month.
 
Wickstead Horseplay will be running their Arena Eventing series again this winter. There is a Pony Club section and classes from 80cm to 110cm. The first date of the series is on 1st November.
 
Also on 1st November is the OBH Gate Jumping competition at Gainfield Farm with an under 16 section starting at 10.30am, followed by a 16-25s class with £100 prize, and an Open class where competitors can remove clothing to stay in if they knock down the gate.
 
Dates for your Diary are below, in addition to rallies coming up over the next month.
 
Have a great half term!
 
Alison & Lucinda
 
Dates for your Diary 2016
 
The Awards night is on Friday February 12th in Hanney Village Hall and we hope that all members and their parents can be there.
 
Dates for Camps are now being confirmed with Senior Camp at Hartpury the last week of July, Junior Camp at Wickstead the first week of August, and Mini Camp dates to be finalised but probably over the first weekend of August.

Area 9 Dates for 2016:

  • 13th Mar Dengie Dressage – Moores Farm
  •  
  • 20th Mar Dengie Show Jumping – Hartpury (Hosted by Old Berks Hunt PC)
  •  
  • 25th Mar Pony Racing Cheltenham
  •  
  • 2nd Apr Dengie Show Jumping Finals – Addington
  •  
  • 3rd Apr Dengie Dressage Finals – Addington
  •  
  • April Area Horse and Pony Care
  •  
  • 30th May Hickstead SJ Qualifier – Kemble Show
  •  
  • 2nd-3rd  July Area Tetrathlon – Gadbury
  •  
  • 4th-5th July  16+ clinic – Rectory Farm
  •  
  • 10th July Barbury Show Jumping
  •  
  • 14th July Area Eventing (Open class only) to be held at Upton House BE Event
  •  
  • 17th July Area Show Jumping – Stowell Park
  •  
  • 23rd July  Area Eventing (Intermediate, Novice and Junior 80cm) – Dauntsey
  •  
  • 27th July Area Dressage – Kemerton Hall
  •  
  • 3rd Aug Jorrocks Polo
  •  
  • 5th-7th Aug Cowdray Polo Champs
  •  
  • 6th-7th Aug Reg Tetrathlon
  •  
  • Aug TBC Area Mini Eventing – Rabson
  •  
  • 11th-14th Aug Tetrathlon Championships – Bishop Burton
  •  
  • 19th-23rd Aug Main Pony Club Championships – Cholmondeley Castle
  •  
  • Sept 4th Area 9 SJ Championships – Rectory Farm

 

September 2015 Update

As children return to school and ponies finally get a few well earned days off, we can reflect on an incredibly busy and successful summer for the OBHPC. More than half our members – 167 in total – attended Mini, Junior or Senior Camp and enjoyed the opportunity to try a variety of different activities. Lila and Evie enjoyed a moment of fame when Spencer’s video of them jumping bareback at Camp went viral on Facebook. Members qualified for the PC Championships in SJ, Dressage, Eventing, Tetrathlon and Horse & Pony Care, with top 10 Championship placings in SJ, Dressage and Eventing, Team 2nd in Intermediate Dressage and another national win for Fiona Jack’s Horse and Pony Care team. 135 members passed tests from E to AH level, with a 100% pass rate within the Branch, which is quite a feat at C+, B and AH level. The holidays ended with the Area 9 SJ Championships at Rectory Farm where OBHPC almost swept the board with our teams winning 4 of the 6 classes.

Our branch is bucking the national trend and is growing in membership year on year, thanks largely to an incredibly committed committee of volunteers putting on such a range of rallies, camps and team activities. Sadly, increased work commitments have meant that Lucinda is stepping down from her role as Joint DC at the end of the year, but will be continuing in a slightly less time consuming role. To continue to serve our members well we will be making some changes to the way the committee is structured, opening the way for more parents to get involved in a wide variety of roles. Now is your chance to step forward if there are any areas that you feel you can help with; simply reply to this email for more details.

Hunter Trial

The OBH Hunter Trial is on Sunday 11th October. The schedule is on the website and if yu aren’t competing but can give up a few hours to jump judge please contact Jane Marsh.  email: marsh-jane@btconnect.com

Team Chasing

We will be putting together a team or two for some low key (approx 90cm) team chasing this autumn. At the moment we are aiming for Grafton on 18th October and Bicester on the 8th November but there are various other opportunities. For more details please reply to this email.

Alison & Lucinda

 

August 2015 Update

What a busy month it has been!
  • More than 100 members have had an amazing time with their friends and ponies at either Mini Camp in Brightwalton or Junior Camp in Wickstead.
  • 116 members enjoyed the very well-named “Big Rally” and BBQ at Elmwood.
  • We had a very successful Dressage Area competition with members qualifying for the Championships in all three levels.
  • At the Eventing Areas we had 5 teams competing at the Mini and Junior competition and all 5 teams were placed in the top 5. At Novice, Intermediate and Open levels we had members qualifying for the Championships in all three levels.
  • Jack Church has been competing as part of the Tetrathlon Central team this week and has qualified for the Championships.
  • Members have has great results in dressage and show jumping at the Trailblazers championships and the RC Eventing championships.
  • Becca Bell is heading home from an incredible week in Malmo as part of the European Pony Dressage Team where she was part of the gold medal winning team.
  • Numerous tests and badges have been achieved and 34 members passed their D+ test at Junior Camp.
  • Lots of  members gave up time to help at camps, and their assistance, along with the new coaches, proved absolutely invaluable.

Results and lots of photos from all of our activities are on our branch Facebook page: www.facebook.com/OBHPC

 
Coming up later this month we have Senior Camp at Hartpury which will include a new over 16’s Camp. We have a number of candidates taking C, C+ and B test. Members will be representing us at the Championships for Horse and Pony Care, Show Jumping, Dressage, Tetrathlon and Eventing and we wish them all the best of luck.
Although it seems like the summer is only just beginning, autumn hunting starts next month so in preparation we have a kennel visit and mock hunt, and on Friday 28th August we have our end-of-summer BBQ and fund raiser at Aaron Nobb’s yard in Radcot. If you haven’t already bought tickets they are available from Michelle Noys.
 
Kit amnesty. Now that the Areas are over it would be great to gather in any kit that is still out there. Please check tack rooms, horse boxes and your laundry baskets, and if any OBHPC kit has made its way home with you please pass it to Amelia, Joy, Ros, Lucinda or Alison, or bring to the BBQ on the 28th August. We are missing a couple of radios, saddlecloths (new borrowed ones that haven’t yet come back and the old style with OBHPC in blue), pale blue hat silks, OBHPC rugby shirts, a royal blue Hit Air air jacket and a black and red pull cord for the air jackets.
 
Enjoy the summer and don’t forget to give your ponies an occasional day off over the holidays!
 
Alison & Lucinda

 

July 2015 Update

Camps

Mini and Junior Camps are now full, with waiting lists being held for both. There are a few spaces left at Senior Camp but please get your forms in to Joy in the next few days if you would like to come.

The Big Rally at Elmwood

We have 87 members of all ages already booked in, so please book by return if you would like to come and haven’t yet booked. We will have morning and afternoon sessions with a BBQ lunch and icecream van in between. Book with Lisa Smith: lisasmith@bensmithandsons.co.uk

Area SJ

Our Area teams were 9th in Juniors, 8th in Novice, 3rd and 8th in Intermediate, only just missing out on a Championship Qualifier, with Sasha H qualifying as an individual. However the new saddlepads may have contributed to fantastic results outside the ring, with OBH teams claiming 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th positions across the Novice and Intermediate Tack & Turnout competitions!

Barbury SJ

Well done to Niamh – 2nd Individual, and to Sasha Cammack, Issy Rowsell, Maddie Plumb and Izzie Miners for being 3rd in the team competition.

Tetrathlon

Good luck to the following members who will be representing the OBH this weekend in the Tetrathlon Areas. After the great results they have been achieving throughout the season we are looking forward to a good weekend of competition!

  • John
    Jack
    Olivia
    Ella
    Archie
    Bea
    Ella
    Lexie
    Polly
    Fenella

Dressage and Eventing Areas

The dressage and eventing teams are training hard and there is no doubt that by training together our members get so much more from being part of a team competition. Mini and Junior eventing teams will be finalised after this Monday’s rally at Rabson Manor.

A huge thank you!

Can we take this opportunity to thank all of our wonderful volunteers who are all particularly busy at this time of year with camps, rallies, team training and area competitions. Most of our volunteers take time off work – unpaid – to put on such a busy programme for the benefit of our members and we are incredibly grateful for every hour given to the Branch.
Children, please remember to thank them as they do it all for you.
Parents, at this time of year the smallest gesture to a busy volunteer can be a godsend so please step forward where you can, whether it is loading or towing a trailer of jumps for camps or taking cups of tea to instructors at rallies. All help will be hugely appreciated!

Enjoy the holidays!

Alison & Lucinda

 

June 2015 Update

OBHPC Junior Show

The Junior Show on 31st May was a huge success again this year with over £2500 being raised for the Branch. Lisa Powell, Caroline Norton-White and their fantastic team did an amazing job, despite challenging weather conditions relocating the marquee into a hedge the night before. We have received some lovely emails from parents of members and non-members, including some who hadn’t been to a show before, who really enjoyed the friendly, encouraging atmosphere and gorgeous rosettes. Former District Commissioner, Sue Cobham, summed it up beautifully in her letter to the organisers, I want to thank you and all your team involved in running Sundays PC Show so much for such a wonderful day.  Everyone was having a such marvellous time, from the oldest judges (me?) to the youngest spectator (probably less than a year old), including Ring Stewards, helpers, secretaries, announcers, PC Members, and, most of all, those amazing over-18 year old ponies!”

Schedules

Remember to check the Schedules page for details of shows, hunter trials and events in the area. There is lots of choice on there for every level.

Area Teams

Squads for dressage, showjumping or eventing are being finalised this week. If you are hoping to be involved and haven’t had an email this week please get in touch with Alison or Lucinda by email ASAP as it may be that the discipline manager didn’t think you were interested or available. If you are riding safely at the required level, have been an active member of Pony Club all year and are able to attend team training in June / July, we would like you to be involved, even if you aren’t the most competitive; it is not all about winning! There tend to be more members than there are spaces at the lower levels (75cm – 90cm classes) but selection is based on several criteria including age and attendance of rallies, not just ability.

Yummy Mummy Camp

We are incredibly lucky in the OBHPC to have Lisa Smith organising group lessons for pony club Mums and a group of intrepid campers have just enjoyed two wonderful days at Boomerang with instructors Fi Dowding and Charlotte Jackson.

The Big Rally at Elmwood 
The Big Rally is on Thursday 23rd July and we hope that every member can be there. It is suitable for all ages from minis on lead rein up to our open teams, with gymkhana, dressage, SJ and XC. We are particularly keen for those planning to go to mini or junior camp to be there as it helps us finalise rides, and there will be team practices for the eventing and dressage squads.

There will be a BBQ and an ice-cream van so you can make a day of it if you want to.
Book by email with Lisa Smith lisasmith@bensmithandsons.co.uk

Beach Ride

Back by popular request, our Beach Ride will be on Saturday 25th July at Brean Beach. It is great fun and well worth the drive. See the fixtures page for more details.

End of summer charity BBQ

Friday 28th August at Radcot Equestrian, 5.30pm – 10pm. Join us for a social evening of fun activities, hog roast and a silent auction with some fabulous prizes. Tickets are £5 per family and are available from Aaron Nobbs or Michelle Noys and available at The Big Rally and at our camps. Michelle is collecting raffle, tombola and auction prizes so please let her know if you are able to help.  noyses@ntlworld.com

Alison & Lucinda

 

May 2015 Update

Junior Show

Final preparations are underway for the OBHPC Junior Show on Sunday 31st May. The schedule is here.  It is a great help to organisers (and saves on late entry fees) if you can get entries in nice and early, and please email the link on to anyone outside of PC that you think might be interested – it is open to members and non-members, 12 and under.

A massive amount of work has already gone into arranging the show and Lisa Powell and her wonderful committee would really appreciate some extra hands for the set up on Saturday 30th and most importantly for the clear up on Sunday afternoon. If you can spare an hour on either day please email her on lisa.p@me.com – just the offer of towing a trailer of jumps back to Oldfield Farmhouse on the Sunday afternoon makes a big difference at the end of a long day.

 
Hunter Trial
Perfect ground conditions, a well prepared course and a newly filled-in trakhener ensured that the OBHPC Hunter Trials at Wickstead this month was a huge success. Vanessa Kilgour and her team had an impressive 171 entries which has raised a significant amount to help subsidise rallies over the next year. Full results are on the website but a particular well done to Emma Hazell and Marina Jacobs for winning their classes, and to ex-OBHPC ponies Whisper and Cocoa for winning two of the classes with their new jockeys. Massive thanks to all of the volunteers who helped on the day and a special mention to Archie Bugner and Jamie Richardson for being on gate duty for hours in all weather.

The OBH Hunter Trial is at Step Farm on Sunday 7th June with courses from 2’3 to 3′. Schedule here.Area Showjumping is on Sunday 5th July at Stowell Park. We will be entering teams for the Novice (90cm), Intermediate (100cm) and Open (110cm) qualifiers, and also for the Junior class which is 75cm and open to members 12 and under on the 1st January. Those on the long list for possible selection, based on interest already expressed or attendance of SJ rallies, will be emailed over the next week. If you don’t receive an email and would like to be considered for teams please email Claire Lisi on c.lisi@hotmail.co.uk. We try to include as many members as possible so please don’t be shy in coming forward!

Olympia
There are still a few discounted tickets for Olympia on Monday 21st December with a bus from Wantage town centre. Please email alison@obhpc.co.uk to book.
 
Camps
Forms for all three Camps are now online.  Please book as soon as possible and remember to send a photocopy of ALL the vaccination pages and the ID page from your pony’s passport with your application. ALL abilities are catered for at ALL camps to ensure every member can attend, including a “gung-ho” group at mini camp and a non-jumping group at senior camp.
 
Facebook
Facebook is becoming an increasingly effective way to keep in touch with members and their families and there are hundreds of photos on their from the past year. If you have a Facebook account and “Like” the page the updates should appear in your newsfeed. Anyone under 13 can’t have a Facebook account of their own, but can still see all of the content on the page by using the following link: www.facebook.com/OBHPC
We ensure that content on our Facebook page is suitable for members of all ages.
 
Well done to… Henry Hobby and Honor McFarlane for being selected to ride in the Inter Hunt Relay at Royal Windsor this week. They both did very well to help their teams to finish in 7th and 8th position. Well done to Sasha Hargreaves (BE90) and ex-OBHPC member Chloe Arnold (BE100) for finishing 7th and 8th respectively at Badminton Grassroots last week.
 
There are an abundance of rallies over half term, details below, and don’t forget to come along to the Countryside Day tomorrow at the OBH Hunt Kennels. There is loads to see and do all day and our drill riders will be performing in the main arena at 1.15pm.
 
Happy riding!
 
Alison & Lucinda
 
 

April 2015 Update

Coaches
We have 6 new coaches in the OBHPC; well done to Axie Finch, Ben Boscowen, Jack Church, Jack Whiteford, Jake Elliot Jennings and Shannon Lewis. You will see them assisting at rallies over the summer to work towards their full qualifications.
 
Helping at Camps
The forms for our 2015 Camps will be online from 1st May. This year we will be having a bit of a change with helpers at Mini and Junior Camps as we see this as a great opportunity for our coaches and older members to work closely with an instructor and gain valuable experience. There are 9 helper spaces at each Camp, and priority will be given to our new coaches and those hoping to do their coaching course in 2016 or 2017. Priority on coaching courses in future will be given to those who have already gained experience by helping at Camps. Please email the Camp organisers if you would like to help at the following camps:

Junior Camp is Monday 27th July – Thursday 30th July. Email Ann Addington

Mini Camp is Monday 3rd August – Wednesday 5th August. Email Lucy Winfield

 
Horse and Pony Care Areas
A massive well done to our Junior Horse and Pony Care Teams at the Areas last week; Louise, Eleanor and Ophelia won, with Milly, Jessie and Macey coming 2nd. The winning team will go forward to the Championships at Cholmondley Castle in August and the runners-up are hoping for a “wild card” after being 45 points clear of the next closest team. This is the 12th consecutive year that Fiona Jack’s Juniors have won the Areas. We hosted the event at the Hunt Kennels – all brilliantly run by Fiona Jack –  and it was a great OBHPC day with lots of cake for all the volunteers!
 
Dengie Showjumping Championships
Well done to Niamh W for coming 2nd in the Pony Club Dengie SJ Championships – and getting a mention in Horse and Hound – and to Lila B who won the best U12 award and got her photo on the main Pony Club Facebook page!
 
Mounted Games
Our teams will be competing this Sunday at the Areas so good luck to them all and to their coach, Joanna Lambert.
Stars team – Tilly, Kate, Gabriel, Bonnie and Scarlet
Saltires team – Lara, Freddie, William, Ella and Bea
Come and join us to cheer them on at the Three Counties Showground, Malvern from 1pm, if you can. If is a really fun event, and is followed by industrial quantities of sweets.
 
Volunteers please
Busy with your children at weekends and unable to help at the events we run? Don’t worry, there is still an opportunity for you to volunteer! Please come along to Oldfield Farmhouse, Baulking, on Wednesday 29th April between 9.30 and 11.30am to help sort, wash off and put out the show jumps ready for our summer rallies and the Junior Show. Absolutely no skill required, just bring your rubber gloves, a bucket and a sponge and we will supply coffee and cake. Many hands make light work and we really do need your help. Please add your name to Claire Lisi’s list if you are able to help; email c.lisi@hotmail.co.uk
 
The OBHPC Hunter Trial is on Sunday 3rd May. PLEASE come along either to compete, or if you can’t please contact Vanessa Kilgour on vkilgour@yahoo.co.uk to help for a few hours with jump judging. It is an important event in our calendar a great opportunity to compete at a traditional hunter trial.
 
The Junior Show is on Sunday 31st May and is open to members and non members under 12 years. The schedule will be on www.horse-events.co.uk in the next few days.
 
The fixture list up until the end of half term is below, with a few more rallies being added over the next few days, and many of you will be pleased to see the old Ridgeway Ride and Cook Out Breakfast on the list for half term. This is for ALL ages and abilities; a sociable hack for older members right down to our smallest members on lead reins. Venue to be confirmed but probably close to Wantage as the gates at the White Horse Hill car park are a bit narrow for lorries.
 
We also have loads of Schedules on the website, and Joy is adding more every day and is always delighted to receive more if you know of any she has missed.
 
For those with school exams over the next few weeks – good luck. Half term isn’t far away!
 
Best wishes
 
Alison & Lucinda
 

March 2015 Update

This comes a few days late this month following a particularly tricky week for both your DCs!
 
Hunter Trial
The OBHPC Hunter Trial is on Sunday 3rd May and the schedule is now available on our website and on www.horse-events.co.uk. Please support it and enter early; it is an important fundraiser for the branch. There are courses from 1’9″ upwards and pairs classes for those wanting to give their pony a confidence-giving round to start the eventing season, as well as clear round show jumping.
 
Pony Racing
At the Lockinge point-to-point on Easter Monday, 6 April 2015 there will be two pony races, both of which are 7 furlong, with no jumping involved!

138cm (13.2) and under for children aged 9 – 11 years
148cm (14.2) and under for children aged 12 – 15 years
There is a pony racing rally this Saturday, 21 March, at 10am at the Lockinge point-to-point course, so that anyone intending to ride in the pony races this year or are considering it for next year can practice riding the course before entries close. Please contact Do Curtis to book or for ore information.

Email: joannacurtis@upperfarm.uk.com or phone 07881 821500

Blenheim Eventers Challenge
Despite a major ballot, our entry has been accepted for the Blenheim Eventers Challenge, held on Friday 18th September during the Horse Trials. They advise it is a stiff 1.05m course of SJ and portable XC fences. As with all our teams we will be selecting a team nearer the time based on a proven record at this height and involvement in all PC activities.
 
Spurs
If you are competing in PC competitions over Easter and have not yet applied for Spurs Cards, please do so as soon as possible. The spurs policy is here.
 
Well done and good luck to…
Lottie Aird for selection for an England Trial for the DAKS Home International Mounted Games this weekend.
Jemima Gray and Sasha Hargreaves for selection for Rider Development Pathway trials early next month.
Francesca Young for qualifying for the Royal International Showjumping at Hickstead on 1st August.
 
Congratulations to the winners of the OBHPC Trophies from the Wickstead Arena Eventing Championships last weekend; Jules Farrant, Honor McFarlane and Erin Angel. It was great to see so many members (and instructors!) there for the qualifying rounds and competing at the Championships and we will be supporting the series again next winter with a PC section again.
 

A huge good luck to our two Junior Horse and Pony Care Teams who will be representing the Branch at the first of the 2015 Area competitions early in April.

And good luck and a sad farewell to Mel Jones who will be moving to Ireland early next month. Mel has been teaching for the OBHPC since the 1980s. She has trained our eventing teams, prepared candidates for tests at every level, taught all levels of rider and has been as popular at mini camp as she is with the top rides at senior camp. She will be greatly missed and we wish her, Steve, Gee and Lily the best of luck for the future. She has promised that she will be flying back to teach at senior camp this summer!

Wishing you all plenty of riding for the Easter holidays.
 
Alison & Lucinda
 
 

 

February 2015 Update

Awards
Well done to all the members, siblings, parents, grandparents (and even a dog!) who were recognised at our first Awards Night at the end of January. Having promised not to just be about riding achievements, awards were presented for everything from Best Photo Bomb and Craziest Socks to Best Pony Club Kick.
 
The evening was a great success and a larger hall will undoubtedly be needed next year!
 
 
Our 2015 Awards Winners were:

Niamh Warburton

Verity Smith
William Curtis
Freddie Curtis
Di Scott
Willie Cadogan
Arabella Brooking
Chiara Henegan
Granny Warburton’s dog, Rosie
Alec MacFarlane
Jack Whiteford
Henry Insley
Archie Bugner
Jack Church
Ella Dixon
Henry Jennings
Chloe Barlow
Sophie Johnson
Romilly McIntosh
Bea Cadogan
Immy Sanderson
Max Warburton
Luisa Lisi
 
 
Polo Rallies
We are delighted to have some “Have a Go” Polo sessions in April and May at Longdale Polo Club where they have hirelings available for those members withut a suitable pony.
 
 
Racing Rallies
Racing Rallies start next Sunday, so if you are thinking of doing the pony race at Lockinge Point to Point, or would just like to know how to use the gallops for fitness work, please book in with Do Curtis. The Point to Point pony races are great fun, with a mix of racing ponies and pony club hairy ponies in each class. It is half a circuit of the course and no jumping involved!
 
Classifieds
Lots of adverts were added to our Classifieds this week including a couple of great OBHPC ponies, ponies wanted on loan, available on loan, a trailer and an ex-member looking for work. Please take a look and pass details on to anyone you know that might be interested.
 
Wickstead 2 Phase Eventing
Is anyone able to help at the Wickstead Horseplay 2 Phase Eventing this Wednesday 18th? Either as a jump judge, collecting ring or secretaries tent? Please contact Ros if you are able to volunteer.
 
Area 9 Quiz
This takes place on March 7th with a team of 4 members aged from 10 – 24. If you would like to be in the team, and are available that afternoon, please email Alison. We haven’t entered a team for this for a few years so have no idea of what to expect!
 
Tests
E, D and D+ Tests can all be taken at Camps this summer, with additional dates available for those not at the Camps.
For C Test or Riding & Road Safety please contact Tussel. C Tests will be held on 28th May and 12th August.
For C+ and B Tests please contact Fiona Jack. C+ will be on 26th August and B Test on 28th August after a 2 day B Test “Boot Camp” on 26th-27th. The full Riding and Road Safety Test is now required for both C+ and B Tests.
 
New Hat regulations
The new hat regulations come into effect at the end of this year, so if you are buying a new hat please check that it can be tagged as safe for Pony Club; there are a lot on the market that aren’t up to the required standard so can’t be used after 2015.
 
Neck straps
A number of our instructors and rally organisers are keen to see more neck straps at rallies. Learning to use a neck strap is an essential skill and one that your pony will thank you for! You don’t need anything smart – and old stirrup leather will do – but if you don’t use a martingale or breast girth please pack a neck strap for all SJ and XC rallies.
 
Details of forthcoming rallies are below and include all the rallies currently available until the end of March plus a few key dates for the spring and summer that you may want to put in your diary now.
 
Have a great Half Term!
 
Alison & Lucinda

 

January 2015 Update

Hat Tagging

During 2015 all purple hat tags will be replaced with a new purple and white tag. This is partly due to more rigorous standards which will mean that hats only marked with (BS)EN1384 cannot be used after 2015. Full details of accepted hats are attached and our hat taggers, Amelia, Joy and Tor Tearney will be able to answer any queries, but IF YOU ARE BUYING A NEW HAT check with the retailer that the hat they are selling you will be compliant AFTER 2015. Inevitably there will be a lot of hats they will be keen to shift at great prices as they can’t now be used for PC activities beyond 2015.

HeadCams are no longer permitted for PC rallies as they can compromise a hat’s effectiveness.

Hats must be replaced after a severe impact as subsequent protection will be significantly reduced.

Awards Night

The most important reminder for this month’s update is the Awards Night this Saturday 24th January, 6.30pm – 9pm at Hanney Village Hall. The evening is intended as a celebration of ALL that goes on in our Branch of Pony Club, not just the riding achievements, and we hope that all members across all ages will bring their parents along to join in. Bring a picnic, the bar will be open and dress code is casual. Numbers in advance to Joy please.
Trips

The annual trip to Olympia this year was more popular than ever with over 65 in the OBHPC group. Our allocation of showjumping tickets for the last day of Badminton Horse Trials have already sold out but remember you can still book on line and there are a couple of camping pitches left for anyone wanting to join the OBH camping group for the week. Quote Old Berks Hunt Pony Club when booking direct with the Badminton Box Office.
Competitions

Well done to those who have been out braving the weather. We had lots of members competing in the PC sections of the 2 Phase eventing at Wickstead’s Horseplay today with several more members qualifying for the Championships, and some great results from the Pony Club Xmas Team Show Jumping competition at West Wilts at the end of December  Ces Young represented the OBHPC at Olympia in the Mini Major Relay last month.

If you are out competing at PC events or have anything else that other members will be interested please send photos and results for inclusion on Facebook to alison@obhpc.co.uk.

Coaching Course

Last call for members interested in becoming a Pony Club coach in time for for this summer. You need to be aged 16 or over and ideally already hold your B Test. We will be running a one day Coaching Course on Wednesday 9th April followed by a mentoring programme to get you ready to coach in the summer. Names to Alison asap.

Dates for your Diary
Sunday 3rd May 2015 – OBHPC Hunter Trial at Wickstead.
Sunday 31st May 2015 – Junior Show
Please note that this is a change of date for the HT as it clashed with the Elmwood HT.
Schedules to follow but please put the dates in your diary now.
 

Rallies v The Weather

Our rally organisers are an pretty amazing bunch, but the one thing they can’t control is the weather. If it is particularly wet, windy, snowy or icy remember to check your email and mobile for messages before you set out in case they have made the decision to cancel (something we try to avoid as we know that many of you rely on having a good surface to ride on during the winter). You will not be charged for rallies in that instance, however if you decide that you would rather not venture out to a rally that is going ahead, you may still be liable to pay as we are still likely to be charged by the venue and instructor. Please don’t venture out if you feel your journey will be unsafe or if your child won’t enjoy the rally.

 

December 2014 Update

Membership Renewals
Membership renewals are due before the end of January. A link to the renewal letter and form is on this page and it would be great if you could print it off and post it to Joy with your cheque.
For the cost of a set of shoes you can have another full year’s membership of the Old Berks Hunt Pony Club including subsidised lessons, subsidised hunting, summer camps, social events and competing in teams.
Pony Club members and their horses or ponies are all covered by the PC liability insurance, which covers you regardless of whether you are at a Pony Club activity at the time of an incident.
 
Coffee morning
Sophie Sayer kindly hosted a Christmas Coffee Morning last week – an opportunity for parents to catch up in front of a lovely log fire, with coffee, delicious cakes and a range of festive trade stands to browse. The morning proved very popular and will definitely be an annual event in the future.
 
Awards Night
The countdown has begun to what will be the highlight of the OBHPC social calendar; the Awards Night. Instructors and rally organisers are comparing notes to decide who will make it on to the Roll of Honour for 2015 – but you will need to be there to find out if it is you!
Please put the date in your diary; Saturday 24th January from 6.30pm at Hanney Village Hall.
Bring a picnic supper, the bar will be open and there will be plenty of entertainment for all ages throughout the evening, including a previously unseen video taking us inside Senior Camp, a guest speaker and of course the much anticipated Awards. There will also be a chance to see the annual accounts.
 
Horse and Pony Care Teams
It is great to hear that we have had so many members expressing interest in being in the Horse & Pony Care Teams for 2015. If you are interested in finding out more about it please contact Fiona Jack by email as soon as possible: fionajack1000@gmail.com or look on the Horse & Pony Care tab of the website.
 
Rallies in cold weather
As the weather gets cold please dress for the weather. It is far more important to be warm and enjoying the lesson than looking immaculate – and that goes for ponies too. If your pony is unclipped or kept outside please don’t bath it for rallies, just brush the mud away from the saddle and bridle area and pick out hooves.
 
Enjoy the holidays and have a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!
 

 

November 2014 Update

OBHPC members had 23 different rallies to choose from over half term, including mounted games, mini showjumping, horseball, dressage, hunting rallies, SJ at Rectory Farm, XC at Lynham and arena eventing at Wickstead. Definitely something for everyone!

Well done to the 6 members who all passed their D+ test.

Camps

Summer Camps are the highlight of the Pony Club year for many members so we are delighted to have all of our dates confirmed for next summer so that holidays can be planned around them.

Mini Camp at Brightwalton – Monday 3rd August – Wednesday 5th August (Ages 3-8)

Junior Camp at Wickstead – Monday 27th July – Thursday 30th July (Ages 9-11)

Senior Camp at Hartpury – Sunday 16th August – Friday 21st August (Ages 12+)

Booking forms will be available on line on 1st May and we will ensure that we can offer places to all those who return forms promptly. All abilities are catered for at all camps. Further details are on the Camps page.

Xmas Coffee Morning and Xmas Fair

The OBHPC Xmas coffee morning will be held on Wednesday 3rd December from 10.30am to 1pm at Warren Down Farm, Letcombe Bassett OX12 9LR. This is a scaled down version of the Oaksey House Xmas Fair which has now moved to Newbury. Join us for a coffee, cake and a chat, and an opportunity for a bit of Christmas shopping and a rummage through the 2nd Hand Tack shop. If you are able to bake a cake beforehand we would love to receive cakes either on the morning or the day before. Please let Sophie Sayer know if you are able to help.

The OBH Xmas Fair is on Tuesday 18th November at Kidson Trigg.

Hunting

The hunting season has now started and we already have one member who has completed their hunting badge this season. Now that Annabel Saunders is no longer a Master with the OBH she has stepped down as Pony Club Hunt representative after an incredible 10 years. Thank you Annabel for all that you done during that time, and the numerous mock hunts, rallies and kennel visits you have organised. Vanessa Kilgour is taking on her role as Hunting Rep and is the person to speak to if you are thinking of hunting with the OBH for the first time, or just to find out where the next meet is.

The Childrens’ Meet is on Monday 29th December, venue TBC.

For those wanting to give drag hunting a go, the Berks and Bucks Meet Card is on our Hunting page. Please speak to Phoebe Hobby for details.

Team Indoor Showjumping at Christmas

The Ledbury PC are hosting a showjumping competition at Hartpury on 7th December, schedule is online. There are classes from 60cm upwards and ALL are invited to be part of a team. Just let Claire Lisi know that you are entering. It is a popular show so it tends to be quite a long day!

The Avon Vale have their show at West Wilts on the 28th – 29th December with classes from 55 – 90cm on the Sunday and from 65 – 105cm on the Monday. We tend to have a good number of teams going and again ALL are encouraged to join in. Entries are limited, and close on 18th Dec, so enter early and then let Claire Lisi know so she can add you to a team.

Rider Development Pathway

The Rider Development Pathway was launched last year to aid the development of Pony Club Members who show the ability to progress in their sport and provides a stepping stone for young riders working towards the talent pathways of the Olympic riding disciplines.

Assessment dates for 2015, training dates and application criteria are now online.

And finally …. Amelia’s Chocolate Biscuit Cakes are back!

The Original chocolate biscuit cake, which many of you already know and love, (has sultanas in and a squidgy milk chocolate icing) has been joined by a very indulgent Dark Chocolate Ginger one (dark chocolate icing), a deliciously decadent Salted Caramel (or unsalted, according to taste also with a dark chocolate icing) and a Rocky Road (with toffee popcorn and mini marshmallows and the same icing as the Original) completes the quartet.

Available in Large (A4ish) £11 or small (A5ish) £6 sizes. All freeze well except Rocky Road.

Amelia will be at the Hunt Christmas Fair on Tuesday 18th November at Kidson Trigg and at the OBHPC Coffee Morning on Wednesday 3rd December but of course you can order at any time.

Email Amelia or call/text 07867971934.

Best wishes

Alison and Lucinda

October 2014 Update

There is a great range of rallies to book in to over half term, listed below, plus Aaron will be hosting a Chase me Charlie competition on 30th October with generous prizes for each group. The rumours are that Jo Burnage and Mel Jones will be joining in!

Booking rallies

When booking into rallies with an organiser that doesn’t yet know your child it is helpful to give them the following information so that your child gets the most from the rally:

Age of child and pony

How long owned (if a new combination)

What test they are working towards

Height comfortable jumping

Anything else the instructor should know (eg recent problems, learning difficulties)

Camps and Areas

Dates for Mini, Junior and Senior Camps will be added to the website early in November as soon as Hartpury’s BE schedule has been finalised. Dates for the Areas and Championships are now on the website under Fixtures.

Ponies Wanted and For Sale

Details of ponies Wanted and For Sale are in the classified section of our website, but there were so many in the OBH in September that we have put together a list (attached) which was circulated to Area 9 last week. Please email Joy with anything for our Classified pages, sending it as text and a photo rather than as a word document please.

Date for the OBHPC Awards Night

We have moved our Awards Night at Hanney Village Hall from Friday 23rd January to Saturday 24th January to avoid a clash with the OBH AGM. It is your opportunity to see the annual accounts and to socialise with other pony club families in a warmer, dryer setting than usual! The bar will be open and the evening will start with bring and share picnics on french-style tables before moving onto a short slideshow of the year (including rare footage of what really happens at Senior Camp) and Awards for everything from the most spectacular tumble of the year to the best turned out combination (instructors and rally organisers – it is time to start comparing notes!).

New hat tags will come in on 1st January and this will also be a great opportunity to get you hat re-tagged.

The OBHPC Committee needs YOU!

We have a few positions looking for willing volunteers. Are you able to get involved? If so, this is your chance. Please contact Lucinda or Alison for details – or to volunteer.

1. The OBHPC Hunter Trial at Wickstead. This is a popular event and a great fund raiser. It is a relatively simple day to run as the course is set up and numbered by Wickstead, and there is a big file with everything you need to know. We need someone keen to run the event with a small team, with assistance from the committee if required.

2. Christmas coffee morning. This used to be a very popular event in the diary, which started as a coffee morning and over the years grew into a big Christmas Fair that then merged with the Oaksey House Christmas Fair, which in turn grew so big that it has moved to Newbury Racecourse! We would like to re-claim the small and friendly event, ideally hosted in a house or small village hall, possibly with a few little Christmas stands but most importantly with coffee, cake and a chance to chat. Absolutely no horse knowledge required, you could organise it single-handedly or put together a small committee.

3. Minutes secretary. After many years of making sense of all the discussions at committee meetings, Sophie Sayer is stepping down from her role as Minutes Secretary. We would like to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to her for all she has done for the Pony Club, and are delighted that she is going to continue to be involved in other roles. If you are interested in what happens within the OBH, can keep notes at 3-6 meetings per year (midweek term time evenings), type them up and circulate them to the committee, this is the role for you, and again no horse knowledge is needed.

Have a great half term!

Alison and Lucinda.

September 2014 Update

With children back at school, ponies and the PC committee are able to catch their breath and look back on a very busy and successful summer for the OBHPC. Membership is now well over 300, we have a very dedicated and enthusiastic team of volunteers and instructors, and at the committee meeting last week the list of member’s achievements at every level, from Mimi McGregor winning most improved Mini Jorrock to Becca Bell’s silver medal, seemed to go on forever.

OBHPC and OBH One Day Event

Yesterday’s ODE at Step farm was a great success again this year, with entries for two of the classes closing early as they had filled so fast. Nearly 100 riders took part, with almost as many volunteers assisting in one way or another to ensure that everyone had a very happy, successful and incident free day.

PC Championships

We only had one OBH rider, Max Warburton, at the Open and Intermediate Championships, but he did us proud by coming 3rd in his Open dressage section and winning the Open Eventing. The Junior Horse and Pony Care Teams beat strong competition to come 1stand 4th in their Championships, silencing the critics who had questioned the fact that they were 1st and 2nd at the Area competition that the OBHPC ran in April.

At the Novice Championships Henry Insley was 13th in the show jumping and Sasha Hargreaves was 3rd in the Dressage. Henry Hobby was 5th in the eventing, and the youngest competitor there. Although neither of our eventing teams were placed, the Blue team came away with a far greater accolade; the Horsemanship Award. This is awarded to the team that was judged to have ridden the most competently cross country. Congratulations to Niamh Warburton, Henry Hobby, Honor Macfarlane and Charka Stout, and thanks to their team trainer Spencer Sturmey, who also arranged for HitAir to supply them all with air jackets for the weekend, and to Fiona Stout for coaching them at the Championships.

Area 9 SJ Championships

Very well done to all of our members who qualified for the Are 9 SJ Championships last weekend; we had competitors in every class and despite incredibly strong competition a number of members were placed. Full results are here.

Tests

If your child is interested in doing their D+ this autumn, please contact Emma Elliot as soon as possible.

Ponies wanted / for sale

September is a popular time of year for ponies to move on to new homes. If you would like details of your pony for sale, or pony wanted, to be circulated around Area 9, please send details by email to alison@obhpc.co.uk before Monday 22nd September to be included on the list and on our Classifieds.

Time for a clear out?

Our 2nd Hand tack shop does a roaring trade and is a great way to get rid of unwanted tack, rugs, boots etc – for horse and rider. We can’t sell hats, and prefer not to take saddles, but kit in good condition always sells well, particularly the higher value items that people don’t want to buy new. You get 75% of the proceeds of the sale, with the balance going to Pony Club, and all you need to do it ensure it is clean and labelled, and drop it off to Vicki Clifford Jones at Sunwillow Farm, Childrey. Full details are on the website.

Ensure your name and telephone number are on the label, and the price if you know what you want for it; otherwise Vicki will use her judgement as to a reasonable price.

There are a few items that have been in stock for a long time without selling, and we would like to move them on now by reducing the price or donating them to an equine charity. Please contact Vicki before the end of September if you would prefer to collect anything of yours that might fall in to that category.

Items available for sale are on the website and can be viewed by appointment with Vicki, as well as being at many of our bigger events.

Fixtures

We are in the process or organising the rally list for the next few months, taking us all right through to February, but in the meantime the forthcoming rallies are listed below. Please note that Miles and Annabel Sunders have kindly left their XC course open so that we can hold a rally there on Wednesday evening. Please book with Therese before Tuesday evening if you would like to come along; it is suitable for 1’6″ lead rein right up to 3’+.

Enjoy the last of the summer,

Alison and Lucinda

August 2014 Update

It has been a busy few weeks for the Old Berks, with 59 members at Junior Camp, 49 at Mini Camp and 60 at Senior Camp, all having a fantastic time with their ponies, friends and their instructors. A huge thank you to all of the camp leaders and helpers who worked so hard to ensure everything ran so smoothly.

100 members came to the Big Rally at Elmwood just before the Camps this year which gave them a great opportunity to see old friends, make new ones, meet instructors and enjoy a BBQ and huge amounts of ice-cream. Don’t forget you can order photos from Olivia Pile’s website from this rally and Junior Camp if you haven’t already done so.

Lots of members have passed Tests to be awarded their next “felt”; well done to you all. Others are working hard towards tests later in the holidays.

Two of our members have enjoyed international success; John’s tetrathlon team came 2nd in Australia and Becca brought home a silver medal, this time from the Pony European Dressage in Ireland.

Earlier this week everyone who has attended show jumping rallies throughout the year was invited to a BBQ at Aaron Nobb’s yard. Despite a downpour as the BBQ was lit, everyone enjoyed a lovely evening, thanks to Claire Lisi and Aaron’s great cooking skills, and 17 members were awarded their Show Jumping competition badge.

Area Competitions

We have had teams competing at all the Areas, with Max (Open Dressage and Open Eventing), Sasha (Novice Dressage) and Henry I (Novice Showjumping) qualifying as Individuals for the Championships in Cheshire and our Novice Eventing Teams doing incredibly well, with 2 of the 3 teams qualifying. Good Luck to those two teams, Charka, Honor, Henry H, Niamh, Effie, Henry I, Amelia and Jack, and our two Novice Individuals, when they compete for the OBHPC on Sunday.

Our Mini Teams were 1st and 4th at this years Mini Eventing. This was the first time for a few years that a 70cm competition has been run and it proved very popular and likely to be repeated much closer to home next summer.

Our Polo Jorrocks did very well having moved up a division and a special mention to Mimi McGregor for winning “Most Improved Girl” across the entire Jorrocks age group.

Jack and John Church are at the Tetrathlon Championships this week so we look forward to receiving news from them.

Open and Intermediate Championships

We had a very successful representation at the Intermediate and Open Championships last weekend, with 2 wins, a 3rd and a 4th. A particular well done to Max Warburton who won the Open venting as well as coming 3rd in his arena for the Open Dressage. A full report from Fiona Jack on the Horse and Pony Care is below:

“The two Junior Teams had a terrific day at Cholmondeley Castle: our ‘A’ Team of Victoria Holt, Sasha Hargreaves and Hannah Richardson romped home to reclaim the Junior Trophy by the narrowest of margins – half a mark! The Chiddingfold Farmers, who have held the Trophy twice before, came second and the South Northumberland, who have held the Trophy for the last two years, came third. In fourth place were our ‘B’ team of Eleanor Hubbard, Louise Hancock and Ophelia Spracklen. An awesome result!

Our Senior Team – Sophie Oakland, Megan Borland and Rosie Mason faced stiff competition and finished 13th out of 20 teams a very creditable result as they were among the youngest. The rule change this year to allow teams to field an Associate member (aged 21 – 25 years) means that the standard is now higher than ever, and faced with this Sophie, Megan and Rosie stayed cheerful and positive and gave a really commendable performance – well done all of you!”

Area 9 SJ Championships

Lots of our members have qualified for the Area 9 Championships on 7th September. We will be putting teams together nearer the time and it has been lovely to see lots of you at the preparation rallies for this competition.

Hunting

Autumn Hunting starts tomorrow and there is likely to be an afternoon meet on Saturday. As our usual hunting representative for Pony Club, Annabel Saunders, is away this week, if you would like to check where it is so that you can go along please call Mel Wright, OBH Secretary, on 01793 780104 or email mel.wright@btinternet.com. Annabel will be back in time for the Mock Hunt on Friday 29th August. Members aged over 12 get a discounted rate of £10 if displaying their PC badge, and anyone who litter-picked or sold racecards at the Point to Point should have received a voucher for a free day.

The OBHPC One Day Event

Our event at Step Farm is on 14th September so please get your entries in now if you haven’t already. The schedule is here and you can enter online on www.horse-events.co.uk. There are courses from 1’9″ lead rein to 3ft, so something for everyone including parents! Please come and support it as it is an important fund raiser for us.

Email Addresses

We currently only have email addresses for a minority of members and would like to be able to send emails such as this one to members as well as their parents. If your child has their own email address please reply to this email with their name and email address so that we can update their record. We will continue to send all emails to you too.

Enjoy the rest of the summer holidays!

Alison and Lucinda

July 2014 Update

At last, the summer holidays are upon us and we have an action packed calendar to look forward to, and a print-friendly version of the calendar at the bottom of this email to make it easier for you to see what is on offer. As before, for up to date information and for email links direct to the rally organisers it is best to look at the fixtures page on the website, but we are aware that many members had asked for a printable version too.

News

This weekend several of our Junior members, plus instructors Fi Dowding and Sarah Charles are representing the Branch at the CLA Game Fair at Blenheim. If you are going, look out for them on Sunday.

The dressage squad got off to a great start with some fantastic results at the Badminton Dressage competition on Tuesday with almost every OBH competitor being placed in their section. Jack C won his section and Max W came 7th overall in the ride-off. Well done to Amelia and Edward for all their hard work training the teams. More details and photos of the dressage are on our Facebook page where you will also find updates on how John Church is getting on in Australia; as this goes out his team is leading the boys’ competition after an impressive shoot score of 920 from John yesterday.

Rallies

Next week brings The Big Rally and Summer BBQ at Elmwood on Thursday 24th July, and if you are booked in you will have had an email earlier this evening. Over 100 members will be doing a range of activities, fuelled by burgers and sausages, to celebrate 85 years of Pony Club. We are delighted that so many of the older members are coming along to help. Our Area 9 representative, Pleasance Jewitt, will be there to meet some of our members and see what we get up to in the Old Berks.

Don’t forget Horseball on Wednesday 6th August, and book in soon with Amelia if you haven’t already. It is great fun and a really good way to gain confidence on your pony and meet new people, and the OBH is one of the only pony clubs to offer this activity.

Camps

More than half of our 299 members will be at one of the Summer Camps over the next few weeks, with many more members giving up their time to help at Mini and Junior Camps. If any other members (ideally over 12) can spare a day to help please email Lucinda.

Teams

Over 60 members will be competing in Area Teams for Dressage, Show Jumping, Tetrathlon, Polo and Eventing over the next 3 weeks and we are so pleased to be able to include so many capable riders across the age groups, competing from 70cm upwards.

Hunting Badge

For members who enjoy hunting there will soon be the opportunity to work towards your Hunting Badge. Register your interest with Annabel Saunders now and put the hunting rallies and kennel visits on 25th July, 29th August and 1st September in your diary. Members (aged 12 and over) will need to demonstrate a keen interest and knowledge in hunting and hounds before being assessed in the hunting field by a hunt mentor. Hunting Badge holders who consistently demonstrate good manners while hunting with the OBH stand a chance of being the first to be awarded the Sheila Nash Memorial Stock later in the season.

Volunteering

Please don’t forget that every Pony Club rally, camp or event is run by busy volunteers, and at this time of year they are all working really hard to make this Pony Club great for your children. You may not have the time to train as a first aider or to run a camp, but please look out for opportunities to help out, whether it is loading and towing a trailer of show jumps, baking a cake to share at a rally, or picking up a box of icepops for children to enjoy at the end of a hot day at camp. Everyone will appreciate anything you can do to help.

One Day Event

Finally, a date for your diary; the OBH and OBHPC One Day Event on Sunday September 14th. We have classes from 1’9″ in a mini roped arena to 3′ around the main course so there is something for everyone including hopefully lots of parents! If you don’t fancy competing, we are looking for help with jump judging. No experience necessary as you will be shown exactly what to do. The schedule is attached.

Enjoy the sunshine, your ponies and the fact that there is no more school until September!

Alison and Lucinda

June 2014 Update

We hope that you found our update last month useful, it seems amazing that another month has flown by, there is much to celebrate, which include the fantastic news that Becca Bell has been selected to represent the GB pony dressage team with Valido’s Sunshine (Sunny); and has been made her own reserve with her other pony, Valido’s Starlight (Star).  John Church leaves in 2 weeks to represent GB in the PC Tetrathalon in Australia, we wish him good luck, as well as all the other fantastic members of the OBHPC as you go out and represent us at all the many events you all go to.  It is impossible for us to name everyone and all the events we are represented at.

Half term was busy with many fantastic rallies, thank you to all who organise these, some of the highlights being a ride along the beach,  horse ball, and the Craven PC competition, where we had many great results.

The Junior Show was a resounding success and we are so grateful to Lisa Powell and her incredible team for all they did to make this happen against all odds, and we are thrilled to include a write up from them about it.

“The sun shone and against all odds the PC Junior Show was a huge success this year, despite the last minute change of venue!  There were over 150 entries and approximately £2,500 was raised.  We could only manage this with the help of Annabel and Miles Saunders who kindly offered their land at the last minute and also about 20 people who rose to the challenge and came to set up on the Saturday.  It was great to see so many Dads helping out.  They seemed to achieve an incredible amount with a smile and a beer in hand!  Many thanks as well to all the committee for working so hard and making it happen on the day.”

Mounted Games Areas were earlier this month, and great sportsmanship, determination, skill and team spirit was demonstrated by our teams. Fabulous turnout (thanks in part to Joanna’s beautiful handmade bibs, scrunchies and special OBH browbands) lead to very well deserved 1st Prize for turnout for the Senior Team and 2nd and 3rd for the Junior Teams. Well done to those competing: Grace B, Sasha and Ella C, Camilla and Polly K, Lucy P, Lara M, Lottie and Peter A,  Rose and Freddie C, Faith J, Lucy H and Tilly K, Bea C

And a HUGE thank you Joanna Lambert for all you do to make this happen.

Then to top it all the Yummy Mummys had their very own Yummy Mummy camp at Boomerang, organised and run by Lisa and Risi.

 

Coming Up

We are heading towards the summer holidays and many more rallies have been added to the website so please do continue to check it regularly as it is constantly being updated.

One we are keen to highlight is our Big Rally at Elmwood on Thursday 24th July,  there  will be something for everyone so please do try and come along, there will be XC from 60cms to 1m+, with lead rein hack around the XC course and paddling in the water jump, SJ from lead rein to 1m+ and dressage at all levels.

We will also be having the Summer BBQ that day and it would be fantastic to see as many members as possible at that, even if you aren’t riding at the rally.  Details on the Fixtures page, and names for those coming to just the BBQ to Joy please.

AREA TEAMS

Emails will be going out shortly from the different discipline managers to all those who have put their names forward for teams. If you think you have put your  name down for something and you have not heard anything in a week or so, please do contact the discipline manager.  Please do remember that if you want to be part of a team at the Area’s you must have attended at least three rallies since 1st july 2013 and 30th June 2014, so time is running out.

CAMPS

The highlight of the year are always the fantastic camps that are run by our wonderful Camp Leaders. We are always looking for members of the Pony Club who have moved onto the next camp to come back and help at a younger camp, so if you are interested in being a volunteer at Mini or Junior Camp, please could you contact Lucinda on lucinda@obhpc.co.uk .  It is a fantastic time to give back a little to someone younger than you and have great fun at the same time, so please do think about it, we do need your help.

OLYMPIA

There are still a few tickets left for the Olympia trip on Sunday 21st December, details are on the website.

Remember to keep checking the website for all that is going on, we are aware that some people are struggling with not being able to print the fixtures list, and we are trying to work out a system to make this possible, but meanwhile please keep looking at www.branches.pcuk.org/oldberkshire

Have great fun on your lovely ponies and don’t hesitate to get in contact with us if you have any queries.

Lucinda and Alison

p.s. Do you need help this summer? Our wonderful OBHPC member Axie Finch is back from medical school for the summer and is looking for work helping with children, ponies, dogs or anything else you may need doing. Contact her on: 07724 048978 or axie@btinternet.com

May 2014 Update

It has been just 2 weeks since we took up the reins as DCs but it is already clear what a talented, energetic and enthusiastic Pony Club the Old Berks is across so many disciplines. We are hoping to minimise the use of the “magic button” emails by sending out a monthly update that should be relevant to all, so here goes ….

In the past month we have had members having fun competing in the Lockinge Pony Races and making successful raids at Andoversford and Shipton Moyne One Day Events and the Cricklands dressage championships, amongst many other events and competitions. The minis had a wonderful Easter Egg hunt and members of all ages enjoyed some adult-free time on the Team Challenge, followed by a very sociable BBQ organised by parents. The OBH hosted the Horse & Pony Care Areas, with our teams sweeping the board with 1st and 2nd places in both the Junior and Senior sections. We heard news that John Church has been selected to go to Australia this summer as captain of the GB Tetrathlon team and that Becca Bell has been long listed for the Dressage Pony Europeans. 7 lorry/caravans full of members braved the elements with a camping weekend at Badminton, where we were able to cheer on Saffie Osborne in the Shetland Grand National. Last but not least, Joy Wilson became a granny earlier this week!

Looking ahead to the next month, our Drill Team will be riding at the OBH Countryside Day on Sunday, John Church will be hosting a fund raising dinner on Saturday night and our Mounted Games teams will be competing at the Areas on 31st May. We have lots of great rallies to look forward to in the lovely light evenings and over half term, including horseball and a beach ride. Check the Fixtures/Rallies tab on the website for the latest, and remember to tick the “show descriptions” box and click on the rally to see full details (we are hoping to find a volunteer to put together a printer-friendly version of the list, but hope that most people are finding their way around the web version so far).

One of the OBHPC annual highlights is just 2 weeks away; the Junior Show on 1st June for which we still need a few volunteers – particularly strong men for setting up and tidying away.

Which brings us neatly on to our volunteers survey, which we are hoping every family will complete. We have a fantastic committee, and would love to add to their skills with extra help, particularly with admin tasks such as updating the Facebook page, website and rally lists, and with manual tasks such as helping to move show jumps. Please click on this link to access the survey; it won’t take more than 3 minutes to complete and it would be a huge help to hear your thoughts, even if you don’t have time to help as a volunteer.

Tests

Last call for anyone wanting to take their C+ or B test in 2014. If you haven’t put your name down, or you aren’t sure if it is down, please email Fiona Jack. There will be a final assessment session on 28th May for those not yet assessed, and training sessions in the summer holidays.

Teams

Last call for anyone interested in representing the branch in the Area Teams for DressageShow Jumping,Eventing or Tetrathlon this July. If you aren’t sure if you are ready, or if you aren’t sure if you have put your name down, please contact the relevant team manager before the 31st May. We can’t consider you if we don’t know that you are interested, and would rather hear from you twice than not at all!
Dressage: Amelia Macpherson
Show Jumping: Phoebe Hobby or Claire Lisi
Eventing: Ros Hayward
Tetrathlon: Fred Church

Camps

Forms are on the website for all 3 camps. It is a great help for us in booking instructors if you can get forms back in soon.

Olympia

We have 120 tickets for the Sunday evening performance on Sunday 21st December. They are the 2nd price bracket tickets at a discounted PC rate of £39 per person (child or adult). We will be chartering a bus again, this time leaving Wantage town centre at the earlier time of 12pm to allow plenty of time for shopping, £10 per person. We always sell out of tickets so if you would like to join the group please post a cheque payable to OBHPC for the appropriate amount including bus if needed, with an SAE, as soon as possible to Alison Hargreaves, Larkhill Farm, Wantage, OX12 8PJ. We will put a message on the website when they have all gone.

We are looking forward to seeing many of you out and about over the next few weeks, but in the meantime please don’t forget to take a moment to complete the survey.

Happy riding!

Alison and Lucinda