Grovely Riding School’s Memorial Show on August 12 raised funds for Salisbury Hospice and Salisbury District Hospital Stars Appeal.
The annual show, staged in memory of Gemma’s horse Teddy, has taken on greater significance after the deaths of friends and horses connected to Grovely.
Penny King said: “I particularly love the brilliant school horses and ponies which look after their riders, whatever the rider’s ability, allowing them to compete to a high standard! The day brings horses and riders together, having fun and remembering those we’ve lost, and raising money for charities.”
This year, 40 horses took part, some owned by the riders themselves. The event featured light-hearted commentary from Mathew Coldwell who has ridden at Grovely for the past 14 years.
Vicar Paul Rees and his wife won the competition for best dressed couple.
Paul said: “One year ago, I was bought a riding lesson at Grovely by my wife after watching ‘Badminton Horse Trials’. In that lesson, I rode Marco, an Irish Cob, and from that moment on, we have tackled everything together and he has taught me how to ride and how to jump.
“On Monday was Memorial Day at Grovely and an opportunity for myself and Marco to enter our first competition (mine not his). Unfortunately, on the sixth jump, we knocked a pole down and that was the end of that.
“Would I change anything? No. Was my first competition amazing? Yes, it was. I was the only one to knock a pole so officially came last, but it was always going to be dramatic.
“Being part of a day that involves riding horses, banter with the staff, and more, raising critical money for the brilliant Stars Appeal (Salisbury Hospice) and the Intensive Care Unit – well, it was a fantastic experience and an honour to be involved. Thank you Grovely. Badminton watch out, Marco and I are coming!”
Grovely Riding Centre is said to be one of the most popular stables in Wiltshire, with more than 200 riders attending each week. Gerry and Sue are grateful to sponsors, helpers and volunteers.
For more information on Grovely Riding Centre visit www.grovely.info/