News

Here at Haynet, we like to bring you all the latest news items that are equestrian, canine and countryside related. So sit down, put your feet up and take a read:

Trickle Net launch ground-breaking free online forage calculator

In the effort to educate horse owners and battle the welfare crisis in equine obesity, Trickle Net have  launched the first free online forage calculator of its kind.   The new resource has been developed over several months, and uses data pulled from the latest  available research in approximating the dry matter forage requirements of horses and ponies on a  grass and hay diet.   Built with guidance from Louisa Taylor BVM BVS (Hons) BVMedSci (Hons) MRCVS of Vetrition, the  calculator requests horse owners to input their horse’s weight, hours turnout and type of pasture  with the amount of hay fed and the feeding goal. The results are instantly available to the user and  displayed with a host of recommendations and advice around feeding horses on a weight control  diet.   As an added bonus, the calculator also tells the user how much money they will save if they have  been over-feeding forage. The tool can provide a good starting point for owners, though it does not  replace working with an equine nutritionist. Owners are directed towards the services of Vetrition  and Practical Equine Nutrition for personalised weight loss plans for their horses.   The Forage Calculator was the brainchild of Ellen Chapman, founder of Trickle Net. Ellen says: “Owners often ask us about the amount of forage to feed and we found ourselves repeatedly  running through the same calculations when giving advice. I thought it would be ideal to have an  online tool for owners to do this themselves and learn more about dry matter intake (DMI)  requirements. I then wanted to make this tool more comprehensive and useful for owners, so I  began to look more closely at pasture DMI and started reading the research.”  Ellen continues: “We have created a unique resource which gives owners a good baseline to start  from. Using the specific feeding goal, weight loss, maintenance or weight gain the calculator takes  the numbers we know work. It then approximates on the DM requirements based on the owner’s   information, and the research data. It can’t be entirely accurate of course as each horse is an  individual, but it is a very good ‘ballpark’ calculation, which is a big step forward for owners who  could not easily access this important information before.”  The calculator is supported by BETA, Redwings Horse Sanctuary, The Laminitis Site and Care Equine  Education. Information on diet and nutrition, laminitis prevention, management and weight control  can be accessed from supporters via the calculator page.   Dr Tamzin Furtado of Care Equine Education and University of Liverpool believes the forage  calculator will be extremely useful. “Trickle Net’s new online calculator will be so helpful for horse  owners trying to manage their horse’s weight. We’ve found in the past that people find it really  tricky to work out exactly how much forage they should be feeding, and this will help lighten the  load. It’s also great for determining how much your horse is overeating by – using the calculator made me realise that it’s no wonder my boy is getting fatter as spring comes! Thank you to Trickle  Net for making it easier for people to keep their horses healthy and well.”  The forage feeding calculator is a useful ‘quick guide’ tool that can be used by feed merchants, livery  yard owners or indeed any professional who is providing guidance to horse owners in forage  feeding. Trickle Net plan to keep the calculation up to date should any new relevant research  become available.   Ellen says: “Already the feedback has been incredibly positive. Credit must go to Louisa Taylor of  Vetrition for her expert knowledge and guidance, and to Trickle Net Operations Manager Ollie  Gillyon who has been virtually drowning in coding dilemmas for several weeks! The project has highlighted further research opportunities and more interactive ideas. We hope to launch an owner  focused equine weight calculator, based around ideal bodyweight, with owners accurately fat  scoring their own animals. We feel this could also be incredibly valuable.”  You can try out the Trickle Net Forage Calculator at www.tricklenet.co.uk/forage-calculator For further information you can contact the Trickle Net team at HQ @tricklenet.co.uk 

Lockdown project and special horse raise funds for The RDA

A first- time author and life-long horse lover is spreading joy and positivity during Lockdown with her inclusive children’s story about her beloved Fjord Horse Odin.  Having supported Jade, Odin’s legacy continues to do good with every copy making a donation to the Riding for The Disabled Association.  Jade decided to raise funds for The Riding for the Disabled Association to give back to the RDA having received support to begin a new chapter with her cob Rosie. Jade’s new book ‘Horses Can Roll but They Can’t Roller Skate’ tells the story of Molly, a little girl challenged by physical disability, who yearns to roller skate with her peers. Molly, meets Odin, a cheeky Fjord Horse who longs to fit in with the rest of the herd and dreams of taking part in Pony Club games. Together on their journey, they find fun, friendship and self-acceptance.   ‘I really hope my story will spread a little joy and create a positive attitude towards perceived limitations and help create a ‘can do’ attitude in children facing all sorts of challenges as well as helping the RDA’. I have always had a great love of horses; but riding has always been challenging due to balance, pain and muscle weakness. Having struggled to find the right horse who was understanding of my needs, I was lucky enough to find Odin. We were together until he was 35 years old.  I wrote our inclusive story during that time and set it aside, questioning who was I to write a book?’. Fast forward to Lockdown, and Jade decided to create positivity for herself and others, with Lockdown giving her the opportunity to create the book and develop her website which will also offer resources for little readers in the future, such as colouring sheets and word games and positivity worksheets. Jade wants Odin’s story to be accessible to all no matter what their circumstance therefore it will soon be available as an audiobook. It is also Braille compatible.  Jade has also collaborated with Crafty Ponies Odin’s friend soft toy friend complete with mini Horse Power rugs with the story’s logo accompanies the book and are donating the RDA. She added: “During lockdown, I also wanted to find out about other inspiring equestrians and small businesses, so I developed my ‘Off The Lead’ podcast and have been fortunate enough to chat to fellow equestrians, from stunt riders to Paralympians. Jade’s book and gifts are available via her website 

Richard Johnson Retires After 30 Years In The Racing Saddle

Richard Johnson, one of the most successful jockeys of all time, shocked the sporting world on Saturday when announcing his retirement with immediate effect. Johnson, 43, revealed the surprise decision after finishing third on the Philip Hobbs-trained Brother Tedd in the 2m5f handicap chase at Newton Abbot, after which he stood down from his ride in the last race. The four-time champion rode 3,819 winners – a figure only bettered by great rival Sir Anthony McCoy – and claimed Cheltenham Gold Cup glory twice on Looks Like Trouble (2000) and Native River (2018) as well as many of jump racing’s biggest races. He was awarded an OBE in 2019 for his services to the sport. Johnson, who was in tears after his final ride, said in a statement: “After nearly 30 years in the saddle, the time has come for me to retire. I have been so extraordinarily lucky to have ridden so many wonderful horses, and for so many incredible trainers and owners. It was particularly important to me to finish on one for Philip and Sarah Hobbs who, like Henry Daly, have supported me for over 20 years. I’ll never be able to articulate what their loyalty has meant to me. There are so many people to thank who have been part of my journey. Without ‘the Duke’ and Dinah Nicholson and their remarkable staff, I’d never have got that first leg up. Noel Chance, Peter Bowen and Milton Bradley, thank you for putting your trust in me when I was starting out. Those were the days that shaped my career, with so many people who remain lifelong friends. The truth is there are simply too many people to thank on an individual basis, but you know who you are and what you mean to me. To jockeys past and present who I’ve shared weighing room benches with up-and-down the country, to the valets who have looked after me, to the doctors who’ve patched me up and to the physios who’ve put me back together. Without Dave Roberts I’d have never ridden as many winners and without the help of physio Kate Davis in recent years I wouldn’t physically have been able to. I salute you all. Thank you to the Tote and the ROA for sponsoring me. Thanks to all the fantastic racecourses and staff that put on this great show and to all the media who have been so supportive for so long. To all horseracing fans who we have missed so much this year on our racecourses. Thank you for every cheer, every shout of encouragement, it’s given me enormous strength over the years. I am so very grateful to you all. To my wonderful family, thank you so much. Mum, Dad and my brother Nick who have always been by my side. Finally, to my wife Fiona and amazing children Willow, Caspar and Percy. Without you nothing would have been possible. Article and image credit: Racing Post/Wikipedia

National fixture to replace Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting for 2021

The directors of the All England Jumping Course, Hickstead have made the difficult decision to cancel the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting for 2021, due to the ongoing Covid-19 situation. The international fixture will be replaced by a national show, the Al Shira’aa Jumping Championships, to run on the same dates (23-27 June). While there will be no international showjumping, there will be a range of jumping classes from British Novice to Grand Prix level as well as the usual showing and carriage driving classes that form part of the June fixture. The Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting is one of the most iconic showjumping events in the international calendar, culminating in the Al Shira’aa Derby – a class that was first held in 1961. Normally around 40,000 people attend across the five days of the show. The meeting was cancelled in 2020, which was the first time the class had not run since its inception. The decision to miss a second year has been a very disappointing one, but despite the encouraging Government announcements and rollout of the vaccine, the situation still remains fragile and unpredictable at this time. The replacement event, the Al Shira’aa Jumping Championships, will see seven rings of competition run throughout the show, including the Longines International Arena. The highlights will be the Al Shira’aa Trophy, a 1.40m Grand Prix with a £15,000 prize fund, as well as the Al Shira’aa age championships. There will be a number of HOYS qualifying showing classes, plus the final of the RoR/Tattersalls Show Horse series. Hickstead Director Lizzie Bunn commented: “This has been a very tough decision, but the Derby is more than just a showjumping competition, it is an occasion where a full and enthusiastic crowd plays its part.  With the uncertainty over permitted attendance, as well as other restrictions that we face, we are concentrating all our efforts on running a major five-day national show instead. We would like to thank Al Shira’aa and all our stakeholders for their continued support during this challenging time.” The plan is to run the event with limited public attendance, along with a boutique selection of tradestands, but full details will be confirmed nearer the time. Competitor entries will open in April at www.hickstead.co.uk. 

Haynet has a fresh new look!

An update from Sam (founder of Haynet) The last year has been a bizarre blur for everyone. It is now a year ago that all of our lives were plunged into an existence based at home with a virus threatening. The threat turned into a pandemic with many losing their lives to this horrendous virus. The virus not only took lives, but it also took livelihoods with many assessing their lives and careers. Myself included… I had been thinking of making changes to my work before Covid-19. With my content marketing work, it meant sitting for hours at a time in front of the computer. This is work I love but sitting down was doing me no good physically. Losing my beloved Zeb three years ago made me realise how active I was looking after and riding him for fifteen years. I just needed a change and I knew it had to have a physical aspect to it. So just before Covid arrived and after some research and a taster day training at college, I made the decision to retrain as a dog groomer! My plan is to keep my marketing work for a few days and then dog groom the remaining days of the week. I have been training off and on since last summer at the South Coast Dog Training Academy and will be qualifying at the end of this month. It hasn’t been easy and its a challenge to train my brain these days! But it has been incredibly rewarding and meeting the huge variety of dogs with their different coats and temperaments is so interesting. It has been nice to meet the dog owners too as working in front of a computer screen can be isolating. However, I still want to write and have a platform telling stories from the stables and the fields but I want to also tell them from the kennels too. Entering 2021 in yet another lockdown has given me the time to take a look at Haynet as it enters its TENTH YEAR in existence! In the last decade, Haynet has evolved and changed with the years zipping by, so it felt very natural to give it a fresh new look. There was a moment when I thought about changing its name but a good friend said it wouldn’t be right. Despite trying to think of a new name, nothing felt justified in its replacement. So my friend was right and Haynet is here to stay. Being passionate about branding and creating a new look, when it comes to Haynet I have always given the job to a designer. Haynet’s first logo back in 2011 was designed by an in-house web designer with my very vague instruction I just wanted it black and white! In 2016, Haynet was rebranded again introducing colour and a design from a local artist who depicted my rural life near the South Downs. Having a unique piece commissioned I felt worked with Haynet’s community and visually was recognised. So in the last few months, I wanted a new fresh modern look to the site and again “farmed” this job out to a designer. Nikki from Black & White Digital working with artist Keith Hopewell were given the brief that it needed to have an additional canine element to its outlook but gave them free rein in modernising the branding. As you can see, they have designed a fresh and sleek piece of artwork but keeping Haynet completely at the heart of the branding which I’m thrilled with! Looking at the three designs shows how Haynet has evolved over the last decade. I feel it has gone back to its roots of blogging and sharing content that I hope is of value to its audience. With a glimmer of normality returning and our lives being slowly released from lockdown, I imagine many like me are making changes. Some will be enforced changes but I know these lockdowns have given us time to evaluated what is important in our lives. And actually, it has probably enabled us to remove the trivialities too. I am feeling very positive and making changes has been a real tonic. I look forward to sharing my rural stories from Haynet with you all, particularly from the dog grooming table which will make a nice change. Retraining has been scary but the best thing I have done by far. If you are thinking of making some changes and are hesitant to make the first step, all I can say is just make that leap! If I can do it you certainly can, whatever your age… Sam Hobden (founder of Haynet)

FormaHoof launches Flex Mesh

A great thing has just got better with the launch of FormaHoof Flex Mesh! Launched globally in early 2020, FormaHoof is already transforming the lives of countless horses around the world that suffer from hoof disease, hoof injuries and hoof and limb imbalances. In an exciting new development for the growing team of FormaHoof certified Applicators and the horses they care for, FormaHoof R&D labs have created Flex Mesh, a new innovation designed to take the durability and ease of use of FormaHoof to a whole new level. Designed as a performance enhancement to the existing FormaHoof AP polymer material, the 3D structure of Flex Mesh allows for enhanced mixing of the FormaHoof AP material and more contact points on the hoof wall. The innovative 3D lattice structure of Flex Mesh is achievable only using an advanced 3D printing manufacturing process and uniquely designed materials, which together generate fluid turbulence during the polymer injection process. This encourages even better mixing of the 2 polymer parts of FormaHoof AP as it enters the FormaHoof mould.  Real-world testing of Flex Mesh versus a traditional mesh product by experienced applicators report an increase in overall strength of the FormaHoof application of up to 30%, while Flex Mesh also reduces application times by 5-10 minutes per foot.  The manufacturing process, design and material that make Flex Mesh a reality have never been used before in the equine world, making its launch another global first from FormaHoof R&D labs. Drawing on years of experience in the aerospace markets, the design team approached the creation of Flex Mesh from the ground up, leveraging the benefits of the advanced design tools and 3D printing capabilities within the group to ensure that Flex Mesh fits the horse and the FormaHoof Application perfectly.  For horses that would benefit from additional therapeutic support, Flex Mesh can be infused with medication or dental impression material as needed, providing a support structure to keep it in place and the correct area medicated.  Designed to be used exclusively with FormaHoof AP polymer, Flex Mesh will be sold as a bundle with FormaHoof AP, to ensure the quality of the result. See Flex Mesh in action in the online FormaHoof Academy and FCA (FormaHoof certified Applicator) program at www.FormaHoof.com. 

‘Into The Secret Heart Of Ashdown Forest – A Horseman’s Country Diary’ by Julian Roup

This lyrical book is a love letter to Ashdown Forest after a forty-year affair. Wry, funny, moving and vivid, this memoir chronicles the life of the author and the ten square miles of country he calls his Kingdom. This book is as good as a brisk walk in the woods on an autumn day. Written with love and passion it is a hymn to landscape and freedom. It is a close and deep observation of the writer’s adopted country the fabled Ashdown Forest in East Sussex, England, (the home of Winnie the Pooh) where he has lived and ridden for the past forty years. His gift is the ability to take you deep into the landscapes that make this place resonate in his heart: its streams, woods, heathlands. You meet its literary residents A.A, Milne, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Ezra Pound and W.B. Yeats. You get beneath its skin among the networks of fungi that allow the trees to speak. You taste its foods, meet its locals both the living and the ghosts, and see its huge importance during the plague year 20-21 through the pandemic lockdowns. His passion for horses shines through these pages and his writing is, as he himself says, a form of ‘moving meditation’. He takes you under the soil of this place and he leaves a soft glow on the landscape when he is gone. The 22 essays in the book are small narrative jewels of landscape, horses, friendship, and a search for belonging – what it means to feel part of a place, having lost the one he was born to in South Africa’s Cape. In him Ashdown has found a new voice. Having read this book you will see the forest through his eyes as a place of magic. This is nature writing at its best, echoing that of Roger Deacon and Robert Macfarlane. The author, Julian Roup says of this book: “After the best part of a year in lockdown thanks to Covid-19 it became clear to me as never before how much I owed to the place that has been my home for 40 years – Ashdown Forest in East Sussex – and to my horses who have carried me across its green miles. The forest and the horses have brought me health and peace and contentment when in fact life offered just the opposite. The pandemic truly brought it home to me how important nature is to our wellbeing. So this book is a thank you to the Forest and to the horses, particularly my newest horse, Callum, the big chestnut Irish Sports Horse who has been my salvation during this plague year.” The book is illustrated by the talented East Grinstead artist & horsewoman Abbie Hart. Purchase your copy today via Amazon

MOCHARA offer support to struggling riding school

Dulwich Riding School in London has been forced to close because of Covid restrictions and like many other riding schools across the UK, is facing mounting pressure to pay the bills. Georgina Billings attended Dulwich Riding School from the age of eight and now takes her two-year-old daughter Dillan there. The two of them are on a passionate mission to raise much needed funds for the school. They have set up a Go Funding page and went on a sponsored walk around Dulwich Park on Valentines Day, melting the hearts of many. Next on the agenda is a fabulous “picnic” photoshoot on 19th March to continue momentum and reach their goal of raising £5000.  “I can’t say how needed Dulwich Riding School is in the area, it is a safe space for young people and somewhere where people who might never have been in the countryside or around animals can have that experience. Everything about the stables is so inclusive, there are people there from every race and background, and it really is a community hub.” Georgina said. Tara, owner of MOCHARA Equestrian, was so inspired by the story that she has offered to dress Georgina in MOCHARA clothing for the event and donate her entire profits from sales on her website on 2nd April in a bid to help out the 60-year-old establishment. Tara said ““I feel so fortunate to live where I do and be able to ride every day.  I inherited my love of horses from my Mum who grew up in London and was not fortunate enough to have access to a riding school and did not learn to ride until she moved to Sussex in her thirties!  It is so important, particularly in these difficult times, that all riding schools, but especially these urban ones,  are able to survive and thrive and continue to allow everyone, where ever they live, access to riding either as a sport or just for pleasure.”For more information about the collection visit www.mochara.co.uk

Exciting New Series Aims To Widen Audience of the U.K’s Equestrian Industry

Urban Equestrian has launched its brand-new production series  guaranteed to brighten up everybody’s locked in experience!  We bring you ‘CELEBRITIES IN THE SADDLE!’.  The Urban Equestrian Academy is a ground-breaking, Leicestershire based, social enterprise led by founder, Fr33dom Zampaladus. Their aim is to change social and racial diversity in equestrian sports by creating a more accessible and inclusive equestrian environment for all, regardless of race, colour, culture, status or background.   Many of you will be aware of ‘James Corden’s’ Carpool Karaoke. ‘CELEBRITIES IN THE SADDLE’  follows a similar structure to this production where the difference is that ‘Celebrities’ are invited to undertake a challenging hack with FR33DOM Zampaladus aka ‘The Urban Cowboy’.   The six episodes will give guests a chance to understand the challenges faced by the U.K’s Urban Communities wanting to access the equestrian industry and the stereotypes/ stigmas associated with it.   The hack will also give viewers and the guest a chance to meet FR33DOM’s and understand his vision, but also a chance to question him on the challenges he faced as a young man accessing this world back in his teens as well as discuss wider issues affecting us today.  This production is exclusive to our YouTube channel (The Urban Equestrian Academy) so please subscribe to watch, for notifications, other exclusives, and fantastic features.  We hope the production helps raise our profile, but also help us gain even more support through the many ways in which the public can get involved with our mission.  Click on the link below to subscribe to our YouTube Channel and feel free to follow our journey on socials @theurbanequest (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram).  Grab your popcorn, we hope you enjoy!!!  The Urban Equest – YouTube

Stevie and Harley’s Purpose by Diana Hasen – How Horses Have A Purpose

Diana Hasen decided to write a book to show how her horses have a purpose and how they can spread joy and kindness to many others. At times like these, it’s important to help spread kindness all over the world and be kind to one another. Diana has been doing that with her two ponies and now her new book which has just been released. ‘Stevie & Harley’s Purpose’ is an illustrated book with a key message behind the story, the book is a fictional story which shows the ponies ‘Stevie and Harley’ bringing joy to many others. In the story they find their purpose to help others.  When Stevie and Harley came to live with owner Diana, they changed her life and gave her something to focus on. Diana had always dreamed of having her own horses one day from when she was just a little girl and finally got the opportunity when she was in her forties.  Diana said ‘I want to share my horses with as many people as I can, I want to help others with acts of kindness no matter how small. The book is part of a bigger project through everything I am doing with Stevie and Harley. I am hoping to help make people smile and use the funds raised from the book to do bigger acts of kindness. In the New Year, I’ll be looking to work with sponsors to help make this happen.’  Diana was brought up in a small town in Montgomery County, USA, and was obsessed with horses from an early age. Now the mother of two and grandmother of five, Diana has had a strong working background, owning her own catering business for many years, she’s quite the entrepreneur. Now she’s moved her passion to work on her new project with the horses. Diana has already done a series of acts of kindness during the COVID-19 crisis. While many people were locked down she organised a parade in her local town with bagpipes to help put a smile on people’s face. Recently she has been working with local businesses to donate gift cards to people who need them. Diana’s project and mission is a welcoming example of these challenging times and how much that can be achieved with passion, hard work and positive thinking. The book ‘Stevie and Harley’s purpose’ is now available to purchase online. Visit Stevie and Harley’s website here to find out more – https://www.stevieandharley.com

Survey Reveals Horse Owners’ Fears During Pandemic

January 2021: A survey conducted by equine scientist Dr David Marlin, Dr Jane Williams (Hartpury University) and Dr Hayley Randle (Charles Stuart University, Australia) in October 2020 has revealed how the UK’s horse owners have been affected by the current coronavirus pandemic. With a sample of over 1500 owners participating, the survey identified a number of concerns held by those who own horses including the impact of potential loss of income, becoming ill or having to self-isolate, the fear of increased livery costs as a result of future lockdowns and the possible restricted access to feed, drugs, farriers and physios which could seriously impede their horses’ welfare. Over half of the horse owners who took part (51%) reported that the pandemic had had a negative effect on their physical health; dependent on personal circumstances horse owners stated that they had both increased and decreased opportunities for exercise and riding. While a significant 73% advised of a clear negative impact on their mental health. Illness, bereavement, financial worries, reduced social contact and increased anxiety and stress relating to who would be able to care for their horse in the event of an owners’ ill health or need to self-isolate, all featured highly on the list of anxieties. Worryingly, the survey also unveiled the fact that while livery yards appear to have been strong on providing hand washing or hand sanitising facilities, the majority – especially DIY yards – have yet to put in place Covid-19 plans and many are failing to observe the standard measures prescribed by the government, designed to minimise the spread of infection. Commenting on the survey findings, Dr David Marlin said, “Given the current surge in coronavirus cases and the emergence of the highly contagious new variant of Covid-19, it is imperative that private livery yards take immediate action and put in place the appropriate plans to ensure the facilities they offer are commensurate with the precautions currently being advised to all businesses. Owners need to be updated on the measures that are being put in place and given clear guidance on the revised protocols to be rolled out – and the importance of adhering to the new regime. This survey also demonstrates the need for owners to put in place their own Covid survival plan to ensure the continued health and wellbeing of their horse in the event of the need for physical or financial support should they become ill or if they are forced to self-isolate. This is no time for complacency – or for ‘Covid-fatigue’ to set in. It is vital that the equestrian industry steps up to the plate and plays a stronger role in trying to fight the pandemic. This survey also backs up the argument that horse welfare related activities – such as continued access to feed, drugs, farriers and physios – must remain exempt from any future quarantine restrictions.”

Press Release: 24th January 2021

We have been contacted on occasions by the public presuming we are HayNet (also known as HayNet Buy and Sell, HayNet The Horse Transport Network and My Horse Network https://myhorsenetwork.co.uk/) associating that we are the same entity. Haynet (established in 2011) is not related to this company or connected in any way. Haynet (www.hay-net.co.uk) is an equestrian and rural publishing media business and has no association with this buying and selling site and horse transport service which was rebranded as HayNet in 2019. We hope this clarifies the position and clears any confusion with the similar business names.

Hannah Russell launches donkey hoodies in aid of Brooke

Yorkshire-based writer and entrepreneur Hannah Russell has launched a new range of hoodies featuring a donkey on the front in aid of animal welfare charity Brooke. Hoodies are priced at £45, with £5 from each item going towards helping working horses, donkeys and mules across the developing world.  Hannah has supported Brooke for several years and became a Youth Ambassador in early 2019, travelling to Kenya to see the charity’s work with communities impacted by the ongoing donkey skin trade crisis.  She decided to create the hoodies in tribute to her own four legged pets. These include pint-sized miniature Shetland pony Little Alf and working equines after she found herself seeking the support of her animals this year during periods of lockdown and ill health, having gone through treatment for Sarcoma in the spring.  She said: “Like many, I’ve really leaned on the emotional support of my pets this year and have relished the extra time I’ve been able to spend with them. As such, I felt it was only right to give something back and provide support to those animals who need it most. Although at times it has felt as though the whole world has hit the pause button, working horses, donkeys and mules have continued to provide a lifeline to their communities. I’m proud to be supporting this brilliant cause.” A Brooke survey earlier this year found that almost 2 in 3 people felt that the added time spent together during lockdown had given them a greater understanding of their pet. Whilst lockdown has seen many of us in this country spend extra time at home, working horses, donkeys and mules have continued to play an essential role in ensuring their communities still have access to food, water and medical supplies.  The hoodies are available to purchase from https://www.officialhannahrussell.co.uk/Shop For more information on Brooke and how the charity is dealing with the impact of Covid-19, visit www.thebrooke.org 

Essence of Exmoor by Drew Sproule

Photographer Drew Sproule’s latest equine series uses his signature style to depict the lives of Exmoor Ponies in a new body of portraits. Drew Sproule is pleased to announce the release of his latest series, Essence of Exmoor, a collection of 12 limited-edition mono photographs. Essence of Exmoor continues the artist’s affinity for documenting ponies and horses in different parts of the world. These works examine the relationship that Britain’s oldest native breed of pony, the Exmoor, has with its tempestuous moorland environment. Essence of Exmoor is the culmination of months of exploratory and discovery work, in all weather, that enabled Drew to appreciate and distinguish unique behaviours and to identify certain individuals and their eccentricities.  With an ancient lineage, Exmoor ponies have inhabited the Exmoor moorland for many years with the first written record appearing in the Domesday Book of 1086. They are versatile, adaptable and very strong for their size and are recognised for being gentle, trustworthy and hardworking. Historically, the Exmoor pony was used by hill farmers to undertake all kinds of work from shepherding, ploughing, harrowing and transporting the farmer’s family to market and church. Even though numbers have risen from near extinction in the early part of the twentieth century, the Exmoor Pony is currently listed as ‘endangered’ by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust (RBST). Drew Sproule is a storyteller above all else, with an aspiration to inform, educate and inspire. He is a photographer who focuses on places, objects, and cultures at risk of disappearing, and his acclaimed photographic work can be found in private and public collections in many countries around the world. For more information: https://drewsproule.com/ Please follow on Instagram Header image: Comrades (2020)

88% of riders suffer from reoccurring joint pain

In a recent survey* carried out by Harry Hall, equestrians reported that along with reoccurring joint pains, 84% described tension & stiffness after riding and 68% of riders experience muscle fatigue whilst in the saddle.  With roughly 1.8 million regular riders in the UK**, that’s a lot of aches and pains. Now help is at hand for todays riders as Harry Hall unveil their new range of rider wear – labelled the “next generation” of rider wear. Harry Hall have had over 125 years of development and research in riding apparel and today they proudly launch Protechmasta Sport – Far Infrared wearable technology.  The range has been designed to help assist riders preparation, performance and recovery. “Enabling equestrians to get the most enjoyment from their sport is central to Harry Hall.   We have utilised ground-breaking sport research alongside the very best equestrian product developers to deliver this range” explains Managing Director Liz Hopper. With Protechmasta Sport riders can expect the following benefits:  Aids recovery and circulation, which in turn will help to maintain healthy joints and reduce any swelling.  Muscle tension will ease along with reducing post-exercise muscle tightness.  With healthy circulation users will also see an improvement of appearance of cellulite and skin. To find out more about Protechmasta Sport visit: https://harryhall.com/protechmasta-sport The range is made up of 4 pieces: Protechmasta Power 2.0 Ladies Base Layer Retail Price £75.00.  Harry Hall One Club Members Price £52.50 Protechmasta Power 2.0 Ladies Silicone Knee Riding Tights Retail Price £95.00.  Harry Hall One Club Members Price £66.50 Protechmasta Power 2.0 Full Silicone Seat Riding Tights Retail Price £105.00.  Harry Hall One Club Members Price £73.50 Protechmasta Power 2.0 Leggings Retail Price £90.00.  Harry Hall One Club Members Price £63.00 Exclusively at https://harryhall.com/ *Survey by Harry Hall International Limited in April 2020 with 1142 people surveyed. ** British Equestrian Trade Association – National Equestrian Survey 2019

An Exciting Conclusion To The Equestrian Blogger/Vlogger Awards

The 2019 Equestrian Blogger/Vlogger Of The Year Awards finished on a high note with two vloggers and one blogger taking titles in these prestigious Awards. The Awards, hosted by Equestrian PR Agency MirrorMePR, in association with Blogging Portal, Haynet, received their highest ever number of votes collectively from across the UK, Europe and the USA.  The public voting was embraced by the international equestrian community who came together to celebrate the very best of equestrian blogging and vlogging talent. The Judges, Ashley Rossiter MD of MirrorMePR, and Sam Hobden of Haynet were ‘overwhelmed’ with enthusiasm shown by the Finalists and the public within the voting process. Announcing the overall winners via the Award’s dedicated Instagram channel yesterday, the judges said: “This has been the most exciting Awards process we have ever had. The quality of vlogs and blogs out there is exceptional and to narrow them down to the Finalists, and then final judging has been tough, but we’re thrilled to present the following titles to the below talent: The Equestrian Blogger/Vlogger Of The Year 2019 is: Life On The Left Rein #emteeeventures The Judges’ Comment: “The strong public vote combined with the honest approach to content and brilliant video editing made this a very well-deserving holder of the title Award. The friendship between vloggers Tina and Emily sharing the real-life highs and lows of horsey life makes for exceptional vlog content. Supported with a slick blog platform, this offers additional access to the vlog content away from YouTube. The Judges also liked their genuine affection for their audience; always welcoming feedback and suggestions and interacting with them in a positive and down to earth fashion. “ The Best International Equestrian Blogger/Vlogger Of The Year 2019 is: My Horseback View The Judges’ Comment: ” Silvia’s blog translates incredibly well into English, and both judges were able to read with ease and enjoyed the variety of content and beautiful imagery. The blog is well presented, easy to navigate and Silvia’s friendly persona transposes the language barrier, anchored by a good variety of content to keep the reader engaged and entertained.” The Rising Star Equestrian Blogger/Vlogger Of The Year 2019 is: Hackett Equine The Judge’s Comment: “Only recently discovered on the Judges’ radar, Miri brings a fresh and honest approach and insight into her world and life with horses. Miri’s filming and editing skills shine out, and her subject content is engaging and informative. Miri has the rare ability to engage with her audience beyond horses, and the lifestyle content is a nice balance, the judges loved. One we’re excited to watch for the future.” A special mention also goes to British equestrian blogger, How Very Horsey, who is the Judges ‘Highly Commended’.  The Judge’s Comment: “Always entertaining, and well-written, Daisy’s blog brings a fragile honesty to her storytelling on subjects which can often be difficult to tackle, which she does so effortlessly and with unwavering passion.” The Judges will be releasing a podcast in due course discussing this year’s judging as well as revealing an exciting new category for 2020. The winners will receive a selection of prizes including cash, trophies and a telephone consultation session with MirrorMePR.

The Countryside Blogger Awards Announce Their 2019 Winners

The Countryside Blogger Awards is delighted to announce their 2019 winners this week. The Countryside Awards, which splintered from the annual Equestrian Blog Awards for the first time this year, saw a 50% peak in public entries and public voting on previous years, rewarding its creator and judge, Sam Hobden’s decision to run them separately going forward: “To say we are thrilled at the take-up of these Awards is an understatement. I decided to separate the two categories to shine the spotlight with total focus on each sector’s talent pool and it’s proven to be a successful formula.” Judged by Sam Hobden, MD of Haynet and Ashley Rossiter, MD of Equestrian & Lifestyle PR & Social Media Marketing Agency MirrorMePR, (both sponsors of the Awards) this year, saw the judges spending hours researching, reading and scrutinising hundreds of blogs to whittle them down to just ten-strong finalists. Both judges were overwhelmed with the high standard of content in the public domain, and the calibre of the final ten put forward for the public vote. The ultimate winners are listed below, alongside judges’ comment; COUNTRYSIDE BLOGGER AWARD WINNER 2019:  Country Bumpkin Chic  “This blog ticked all the boxes with a superb mix of content and imagery celebrating the countryside. A beautifully presented blog, well-written content and easy to navigate with an active and engaging social media presence.” RISING STAR:  My Exmoor Story  “A relatively new blog on the block, but the author’s warmth and passion for her life on an Exmoor farm shone through. An exciting blog to watch for the future.” FARMING BLOGGER OF THE YEAR:  Out and About Poultry  “Taking a completely different stance on farming, the content is well-written and blog content executed with immense thought and lots of personality.” COUNTRY STYLE & INTERIOR BLOGGER OF THE YEAR:  McClounie & Armstrong  ” A slick and stylish blog with a well-laid framework of content and inspirational blog posts which conveyed countryside style from wardrobe through to the home and more.” The pool of prizes includes a £250 cash prize, trophies and marketing support from Haynet. The focus now turns to their sister awards, the Equestrian Blogger/Vlogger Of The Year Awards powered by MirrorMePR with both judges turning their attention to the equestrian sector. For further information on the equestrian contest, find them on Instagram: @equestrianbloggerawards

It’s Award Week!

After months of reading countryside blogs, this week the Countryside Blogger of the Year Award will announce its 2019 finalists. This is the first year that the awards celebrating writing from the farms and fields have been hosted in its own right with Samantha Hobden and Ashley Rossiter judging who will make the final ten. It has been a very hard task in reducing the numbers from hundreds of countryside blogs that are now out there. The quality of the writing this year was exceptionally high but both judges feel very happy with the final ten. The award will be hosted through its Instagram Channel on Tuesday 13th August from 7pm in a series of posts. Once the finalists have been announced, voting will be open for you to support your favourite country blogger. On Thursday 22nd August the winner of the following categories will be announced: Winner – Countryside Blogger of the Year 2019 Rising Star – Countryside Blogger of the Year 2019 Special Recognition Awards: Farming Blogger 2019 Countryside Style & Interiors Blogger 2019 It promises to be a very exciting competition, so please come along to our Instagram Channel this week and champion those fantastic countryside bloggers!

The Countryside & Equestrian Blog Awards Return With New Name & Exciting New Developments

The Country Style & Equestrian Blogger Of The Year Awards (CS&E Awards) will take on an exciting new direction this year with new award titles, categories and a definitive split between the two sectors. The move comes as blogger portal Haynet announce that long term sponsors Equestrian PR & Social Media Marketing Agency MirrorMePR, will be taking over running the Equestrian Awards while the founder of the original awards, Haynet, will move forward separately with the Countryside Awards. Both judges will, however, still be involved in judging both sets of the awards, and as Sam Hobden, MD of Haynet and creator of the successful honours explains; ” We want to continue to grow the awards and develop them. After much discussion, it made more sense for us to split the awards and run them separately. There will be brand new categories this year within both sets of the awards and we will also have some exciting new developments to be announced.” Ashley Rossiter, MD Of MirrorMePR reveals one new element; the inclusion of vlogging going forward for both sets of awards; “We are thrilled to include vloggers going forward, and to reflect this, the name of the awards has been revised. With video content continuing to be a strong medium in 2019, we feel the opportunity for expression, topic and discussion are there for both, and therefore they will be judged equally for the categories we will be revealing in due course.” The new titles of the Awards are ‘Equestrian Blogger/Vlogger Of The Year Awards’ and Countryside Blogger Of The Year Award. To keep up to the speed on the latest news, developments and competition details, follow both awards on their new dedicated Instagram Channels with more information of the new categories and increased prize values to be announced: Instagram: @equestrianbloggerawards Instagram @countrysidebloggeraward

Winner of the Equestrian Blogger of the Year Award 2018 Announced

The judges of the ‘Equestrian Blogger Of The Year 2018’ Awards,  Sam Hobden, founder of leading equestrian and country blogging directory Haynet and Ashley Rossiter, MD of PR & Social Media Marketing Agency, MirrorMePR are delighted to announce the following winners: WINNER – The Forelock Journal Recognition of Talent – How Very Horsey Rising Star – Young Hip and Horsey And to continue recognising the ever-increasing presence of international blogger entries, this was awarded to: International Talent Award: The Sand Arena Ballerina Commenting on their 2018 winners, the judges said: The Sand Arena Ballerina “A brilliant blog, very slick in its presentation and content-wise, always written with a very empathetic approach, allowing the reader to connect with Andrea on a very personal level. Relatable and relevant, this blog is a super read.” Young Hip & Horsey “A young filly on the block,  Poppy took us on an extraordinary journey, sharing her own unique story which had us waiting for the next update. One to watch for the future.” How Very Horsey A wonderfully open blog that shares Daisy’s personal experiences, celebrating the ‘up’s’ and brave enough to share the ‘lows’, written from the heart. Very inspirational and an enchanting blog, we  thoroughly enjoyed reading.” Forelock Journal “A delight to read and navigate. Easy to digest, well written and visually engaging, this blog had everything the judges were looking for. Consistent blog uploads of engaging content gave us a very personal insight into Charlotte’s world with a well thought out layout to enable us to cherry pick from the varied topics she writes about easily. Outstanding.” Both judges agreed the quality of the bloggers writing within the equestrian world has grown in volume and it was a very difficult competition to judge this year. With the judges following strict criteria, the top twelve equestrian bloggers really stood out and all were very worthy finalists. The awards have been growing in popularity over the last few years, and the 2019 competition promises to be an exciting one highlighting the strong level of blogging from the equestrian and countryside industry. To embrace and move forward with the awards, a change in format will be announced early next year.

Equestrian Blogger Talent Recognised In Awards

The annual Equestrian Blogger Of The Year Awards returns with even more exciting talent representing equestrian blogging at it’s most brilliant. Now in its seventh year,  the Equestrian Blogger Of The Year was created and is powered by Blogger Portal Haynet and sponsored by Equestrian PR & Social Media Marketing Agency, MirrorMePR. Searching through hundreds of blogs including many submitted by equestrian bloggers themselves, the judges, Sam Hobden, Founder of Haynet and Ashley Rossiter, MD of MirrorMePR have spent months reading and analysing blog content and discussing entries, as Sam Hobden explains: “Both Ashley & I were looking for blogs which had a very distinct personality and tone of voice. We were looking for well-written and presented blogs with good visual representation. We wanted to feel connected with the author and immerse ourselves in their stories. We were looking for blogs where we felt compelled to read more and enjoyed the overall experience, from the initial click right through to then reading the content. ” This year the finalists are very diverse as Ashley explains: “We were overwhelmed by the sheer amount of talent out there, and Sam & I spent many hours deliberating over which ones to put forward into the final as there are so many brilliant blogs. It was a tough decision to choose from so many, but we feel our finalists represent a broad spectrum of equestrian blogging: From everyday riders sharing their equestrian stories, through to equestrian style and even equestrian travel.” Here are the twelve equestrian bloggers that have made the 2018 finals: Equine Ink Young Hip and Horsey Sand Arena Ballerina Krys Kolumbus Travel Country Frantics Sarah Lewis Showjumping How Very Horsey The Forelock Journals Roosa’s Horsey Life Horse Chat Equestrian Lifestyle Saddle Seeks Horse Fifty per cent of the voting is made by the public which is taken into account when judging the winner of the Equestrian Blogger of the Year Award 2018. To vote for your favourite, then click here. The winner and runners-up will be announced on the awards Twitter channel on Tuesday 30th October 2018 at 8pm GMT.  It promises to be an exciting competition!

MDIRF: Thieves Take Off With Charities’ Transport & Burghley Stock

The Mark Davies Injured Riders Fund had their White Chausson Flash09 Camper Van (similar to this picture) REG: WA 57 FRD  stolen between 9.30 pm and 10.45 pm (Saturday Night) from the A38 Travel Lodge Northbound on route to Burghley along with all their stock. Rosemary Lang Administrator and Fund Co-ordinator speaking on behalf of the charity said: “We are all completely devastated. Burghley is one of our bigger events and the van had all our stock, stand and personal items in. We now find ourselves in a critical situation and would appeal to everyone to keep an eye out for our van. The thieves have no idea the huge impact on their actions and the wider implications it will have on our small charity if it is not recovered in full.” “We always rely on Burghley to help fund a large chunk of our work for the following year. This loss could impact on our ability to help so many of you as we do each year, so please support us if you are able to help in any way you can; from sharing our social media posts through to making a small donation on our website, it would be hugely appreciated.” “If you see anyone fundraising with our branded collecting tins, logos and banners please alert the police also as these were also stolen.” Staffordshire Police: 0300 123 4455 You can donate here: https://mdirf.co.uk/donate/

Winner of the Country Style Blogger of the Year Award 2018 Announced

Judges Sam Hobden, Founder of leading equestrian and country blogging directory Haynet and Ashley Rossiter, MD of PR & Social Media Marketing Agency, MirrorMePR were impressed with the standard of writing and variety of content presented by all the finalists commenting on each of the three winning blogs: Winner: Girl About The Farm Laura impressed the judges with her honest portrayal of country life. Her writing style is engaging and often humorous with her choice of beautiful imagery adding a stylish finishing touch to outstanding content which the judges enjoyed reading enormously. Rising Star: Tales of a Country Girl in the City  Lois bridges the gap between city and countryside with an unusual mix of country blog topics, ranging from G&T cupcakes recipe through to experiencing a taste of the countryside in London. With her rural roots and passion for the countryside, while living in the capital, it makes for engaging content. Recognition of Talent: Farmers Wife & Mummy The judges felt that Emma’s blog oozed a genuine warmth and sincerity in writing style and content. A rare insight into country family life, coupled with brilliant practical tips and advice. All the finalists demonstrated truly inspirational blogger talent, and each displayed a unique tone of voice and an individual passion for their chosen topics.

The Country Style Blogger Of The Year 2018 Finalists Are Announced

Now in its second year, the Country Style Blogger Awards hosted by blogger portal Haynet and sponsored by countryside PR & Social Media Marketing Agency MirrorMePR has attracted an unprecedented amount of interest this year, with a diverse range of blog submissions as Sam Hobden, Founder & Editor of Haynet and the awards explains: “The Country Style Blogger Awards were created as a result of the hugely successful Equestrian Blogger Awards we run in the autumn of each year. We felt that there was the opportunity to tap into this niche area with a new award that embraced life in the countryside. This year we have read so many inspiring blogs from sharing unique insights into British farming, sharing a passion and love for the countryside and everything within it through to blogs which shared what to eat, do and wear in the countryside. The variety and quality of blogging out there is simply brilliant.” Judge Ashley Rossiter, MD of MirrorMePR, sponsors of the awards is equally excited by the diverse mix as she explains: “Our finalists are all strong contenders. We wanted to put forward those blogs which we both felt had a unique tone of voice and entertained us as readers through their written word and also through their choice of visual content. The blogs are all so varied, but one aspect which unites them all is their well-written, open and honest dialogue with the reader.” A unique ability to weave commercial content into their blogs without detracting from the essence of their blogs was also noted by the judges, as Sam Hobden explains: “In this day and age, we know that bloggers are an integral part of marketing. However its a unique balancing act for both blogger and brand. Ensuring that commercial relationships don’t overshadow the blogger’s thoughts and personal content is essential.” The following blogs will now go forward to the final judging. These are in no particular order: Girl About The Farm A Country Dreamer Sophie Callahan Country Lifestyle Blog Tales of a Country Girl in the City Farmer Wife & Mummy Sophie in the Sticks To vote for your favourite: https://s.surveyplanet.com/HJ9bxRVTf For more information, please visit: https://www.hay-net.co.uk/country-style-equestrian-blogger-of-the-year-awards/

Country Style Blogger of the Year Award – Finalists To Be Announced

In ten days time, the Country Style Blogger of the Year Award will announce the finalists in this year’s award. Judges, Samantha Hobden from Haynet and Ashley Rossiter from MirrorMePR have spent the last few months reading and following bloggers whose influences and style are focused on the countryside. The standard this year has been the highest ever and many factors have been taken into account on why the finalists have been specifically chosen in this year Country Style Blogger of the Year Award. The announcement of the finalists will take place on Wednesday 2nd May at 8pm GMT through the CSE Blog Awards channel on Twitter by following the #countrystyleblogaward hashtag. Please come along that evening and find out which bloggers have made the finals this year, celebrating writing from the countryside. Finalists will then have a chance to campaign for public votes where 50% of the result will be taken into account when judging the winner and runners up. The winner will receive £100 cash prize and trophy sponsored by MirrorMePR, advertising and marketing support for twelve months with Haynet and a dedicated business portfolio with the Equestrian Creative Network. This promises to be an exciting contest, so please save the date and come along to the online announcement ceremony!

Winner of the Equestrian Blogger of the Year 2017 Announced

The judges of the ‘Equestrian Blogger Of The Year 2017’ Awards,  Sam Hobden, Founder of leading equestrian and country blogging directory Haynet and Ashley Rossiter, MD of PR & Social Media Marketing Agency, MirrorMePR are delighted to announce the following winners: WINNER – Roosa’s Horsey Life  Recognition of Talent – Diary of a Wimpy Eventer  Rising Star – How Very Horsey   And to embrace the ever-increasing presence of international blogger entries, there is also a brand new award introduced this year: ‘International Talent Award’ This fresh and exciting award goes to: Tacchi A Cavallo Commenting on their 2017 overall winner, the judges said: “Roosa’s content was engaging, diverse and entertaining to read.  We loved her honest approach and open dialogue with the reader. A good mix of topical, personal and factual, Roosa’s warmth and enthusiasm radiates and is also reflective across her social channels.” “Our final four winners were all very different, but all united by their well-written content that made for exceptional reading.” Commenting on all the blog entries: “Our 12 finalists showed superb ability,  each with their own unique and distinctive writing style, themes and personality. It was such an honour and privilege to judge such fantastic talent, and we would personally like to thank everyone who took the time to enter these awards, you all kept us thoroughly entertained and genuinely excited about the future of blogging.”