Secretary Report for December

As I write, there are 11 days to the shortest day! Spring is nearly here! Gem and Sauber are extremely woolly but happy and healthy at the top of the Blackdown Hills. Kate and I took them both to Westpoint at the beginning of December. Gem and I were reserve for the quadrille and it seemed silly not to put her in the box as we all knew if we had her at Westpoint we would not need her! When I looked at the arena at Westpoint, my heart fell. We had been told it would be 20 x 37 metres. We had been practising at 18 x 35 m because we thought the horses would move away from the crowds. They did! The arena was still considerably smaller. Georgina and Pushy were our leaders and knew the music inside out. As they went in, I was far more nervous for them than if I had been riding. I knew their canter movement was going to be short; too right it was! Georgina did exactly the right thing, continue with the floor plan, and change pace with the music. They got there – just. We could not complain that we could not hear the music however. I record our music at a loud volume anyway, ours was particularly loud at Westpoint, as the guns went ‘bang,’ the entire building shook! As always, because we are proper “Blackdowners”, we smiled through and thanked our amazing horses. We already have plans for next year – assuming we are selected. Many thanks to Georgina, Emma, Kate and Dezi, and our fantastic back-up crew; you were all amazing.

• AGM and Christmas party. We had record numbers attend and handed out lots of prizes. The raffle made over £65 and we have gained 2 more committee members. Thank you to everyone who attended. Below are the reports from Kate and myself as Chair and Secretary.

News, ReportsMatt Pearce