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World's End Picnic Drive - June 14th


We were all looking forward to the Picnic Drive at World's End Farm by kind invitation of Shelagh Huntbatch and, having had to cancel the original date due to bad weather in March, we assumed that a June day would be better! How wrong can you be, it is British Weather after all! We really appreciated all that Shelagh had done to make it possible and to make us so welcome, it was such a pity that it was too wet for the Gun Dog Demonstration she had kindly arranged for us to watch whilst we eat our picnics. However in spite of the mist and heavy drizzle everyone seemed to enjoy the new venue with some interesting and challenging driving conditions for the disabled whips who all managed to cope well and were still smiling at the end, if a little damp!


Thank you to all the Carriage Driving Coaches and of course the ponies who were also more than a little wet after two drives, and to everyone who towed carriages and trailers and all who helped make it such a successful morning.


Thank you again to Shelagh Huntbach for her very kind hospitality and we do hope that we might have the chance to return to such an enjoyable venue with, hopefully, some sunshine next time.


See Photo Page for photos by Sue Redshaw and also Alan Woodward from Fieldsport Photography thank you to both for allowing us to use them.




May Update


We held our annual Arlington Bluebell Walk Fund Raising Event on Thurs and Frid 10th & 11th May at Bates Green Farm by kind permission of Mr and Mrs McCutcheon. It was a most successful two days and we raised a record amount this year of over £2000. So many thanks to Jo, who does such a wonderful job organizing it and getting the food, and to all her team and everyone who brings cakes and tombowler prizes, well done everyone, and special thanks to Mr McCutcheon for his generous donation.

The bluebells had been a little flattened in places by the heavy rain previously but the two days were fine and warm and the woods, paths and lakes all looked as lovely as ever. Visiting children and some adults enjoyed seeing the livestock in their pens, lambs, piglets and adorable kids (goats!!) There are photos on the photo page by kind permission of Sally Wallis. Ten of the group managed to slip away on the Friday lunchtime to attend Liz Robinson`s Memorial Service in Seaford, we particularly missed her presence this year, helping and organizing in the kitchen.


The Firle Park Drive has been postponed once again and will now be Sept 6th and we were due to have a visit from the Inspectors on Thurs May 31st to assess our new pony Diesel so that he can join our RDA ponies in the group, and also to reassess several of our Carriage Driving Coaches and one new Coach. However the weather was against us once more and with heavy rain and possible thunder forecast it was decided to cancel the morning. Luckily the inspector managed to come the following Thurs just to assess Diesel as we were very short of RDA ponies and we were all delighted that he has now been passed and is able to join the group. Well done to Angela who looks after him for the group and has done most of the training with him, thank you Angela. The CDCs will be `dealt with` at a later date!


We were all so sad to hear from Anthea that Bertie had been diagnosed with arthritis and not a good prognosis for RDA driving, he has been such a favourite and always managed the heavier carts and wheelchairs. It is hoped that later he may be able to rejoin us doing lighter work and we are very grateful to Anthea for all the years she has brought him to the group and always he was so beautifully turned out, thank you Anthea and hopefully he will be able to carry on enjoying an easier life.


On Sat May 19th The Oaks Driving group held their Inside/Out competition at Burchett`s Farm and four of our Heron`s Ghyll Members took part in the RDA & Beginners Class and all of them did extremely well and were a great credit to the Group.


Shelley Redshaw driving Buttons with Bella Freeman drove a very good round of cones and came 4th

Vianne Carr driving Lottie with Sue Page drove another good round doing both the cones and the obstacles and came 3rd
Chris Collin and Jacky Fuller both taking turns driving Buttons with Bella bravely decided to `go for it` and complete all three phases with amazing results!

Many Congratulations to Jacky who won the class and Chris who came 2nd and the `icing on the cake` for Jacky was to be awarded the Oak`s Chairman`s Choice Rosette as well, FANTASTIC!!

Thank you to all who came to help and especially Buttons and Bella who with 3 RDA drivers did not compete themselves and to Sue and Lottie.

We are all looking forward to the Picnic Drive this Thurs June 14th at World`s End, Gunhill, a new and exciting venue to which we have been invited by our generous supporter Shelagh Huntbatch, all fingers crossed for good weather!!
There are photos on the photo page of the Oak`s Competition some by kind permission of Sally and some by Sue Redshaw, thanks to both.