2002 attracted 20,185 visitors during the 4 days and 3 evenings
of the event, an increase of nearly 10% on last year. With bright
sunshine all week and media attention focused on the activities
surrounding the funeral of The Queen Mother, some wondered if visitors
would stay away. But they need not have worried and on Thursday
morning a queue formed as visitors waited for the show to open.
"We are delighted that the show has attracted so many people
again this year. Equus 2002 has been a great success and a number
of trade stands have already signed up for next year," said
Event Director, Sarah Cartwright.
ILPH Bob The Cob and his handler, Liz, with Richard Dunwoody
Dunwoody and ILPH Bob The Cob opened the show before Richard
took to the saddle in a display of arena polo. "I would
like to play more polo and it helps keep me fit," he said.
"I am running in the London Marathon next week in aid of
SPARKS, before embarking on an arctic expedition, also in aid
Bob the Cob and Michael Peace
The Cob, equine ambassador for the International League for
the Protection of Horses, is a 4 yr old and until now had only
been trained to lead in hand. He was introduced to saddle and
bridle and backed for the first time by specialist horse trainer,
Michael Peace, during his demonstration in the main arena. Later,
Bob launched the ILPH 75th Anniversary Celebrations with a special
equine carrot cake.
Tait signing autographs
Tait had an attentive audience during his eventing clinic. "It
is great to be here at Equus, and the crowd seemed to be enjoying
the display" he said. Tim Stockdale entertained packed
stands during his amusing and informative clinic on Saturday,
when he compared riding a horse with being an airline pilot
in terms of keeping calm. "It is important that people
enjoy the show, as well as learning something" he said.
Lucinda Green taught two riders who had won a competition to
take part in her clinic. Both were nervous but Lucinda soon
put them at their ease and had them going well over different
obstacles. "If you make a mistake the audience can relate
to what is happening much more than if it is foot perfect"
Tim Stockdale during his demonstration
Grand National was made very special for 40 children in the Main
Arena. Mounted on hobbyhorses, each one represented a real horse
in the race during the live commentary, with prizes being awarded
to the winner.
Many different aspects of riding provided a full programme of entertainment
in the Main Arena including Horseball, Polocrosse, Dressage, Western
Riding, Side Saddle and Carriage Driving.
demonstrations in the Healthy Horse Stable Yard were popular
and business was brisk around the hall. "We are very pleased
with the show. This is our second year and trading was up on
last year," said Andrew Laver of Alltime Equestrian. Caroline
Carpenter of Country Style was also pleased. "We were rushed
off our feet, especially when Blyth Tait and Lucinda Green came
on the stand". First time exhibitor, Ayrshire Equestrian
said the event had lived up to expectations. "We were very
busy with many genuine new customers. The show is excellent,"
said Kevin Galbraith.
Evening Extravaganza attracted more visitors to the show and stands
were keen to stay open during the evening, a likely development
for next year's show. The majority of visitors proved to be horse
owners and leisure riders and were interested in all aspects of
riding and horse care.