Well-known and long established Leicestershire saddlers, S Milner & Son kindly invited BHS Leicestershire & Rutland to their premises at John O’Gaunt near Melton Mowbray for a fascinating saddle fitting demonstration.
Over 30 people attended and Andy and Kirsty Milner involved them in a ‘hands-on’ demonstration of saddle fittings on two quite different shaped horses, Chuckles the thoroughbred and Dude the cob, in the outdoor arena at their premises. Everybody then went into to the workshop for an Antiques Roadshow style ‘good, very good, excellent and superb’ guess the quality of the saddle leather quiz. This was followed by a discussion about the materials used in saddle construction and the chance to to handle and pass around various trees, saddles and fillings.
Finally riders were invited to sit on saddles in the shop and their own straightness was discussed. Andy was keen to point out that whilst the majority of horse owners and riders are very good at having an equine chiropractor or physiotherapist to their horse, only a small percentage do the same for themselves and this can have a huge influence on the fit of the saddle and the horse's way of going.
Many thanks go to Andy and Kirsty for inviting us, and to BHS Leicestershire & Rutland Committee member Sue McGrath for organising the event. It was a really great evening and everybody also had chance to do some shopping and browsing in Milner’s wonderful shop.