The Horseman’s Sunday event was held on 29 September 2013 and it was the 19th Horseman’s Sunday. The event was held on Michaelmas Day, the angels really did look down upon us! The conditions were ideal, the weather was superb, good turn out of horses, 40 in all and a huge crowd which was the best for a number of years. A really great day.
The organisation was very efficient, especially this year the actual blessing of the horses went exceptionally smoothly with all behaving! Everyone played their own individual part so well. The staff of WHW, the owner of Wrea Green Equestrian Centre and her volunteers, the commentator, the readers, the organist, the two women police mounted escorts, the sound system operators and, of course, the participants, all shapes, sizes and ages. Two special horses were having their last outing before retirement. Penny, who gave her name to the centre Penny Farm, back from service in the Kings Troop and James, the horse ridden by Canon Godfrey Hirst (with grateful thanks to his owner), a police horse on his last public appearance.
Uniting the traditional service with the Stirrup Competition, normally held on Boxing Day, was an added bonus. The horse and ponies were judged by processionals in four classes on the quality of turn out, tack, rider and horse. The Manager of The Grapes presented their trophy to the overall winner, the best of the four classes.
A hack around the grounds after the service was an enjoyable leisurely affair with bacon sandwiches and home made creamy cup-cakes on return.
Rosettes of various colours bearing the sponsors names abounded, each entrant receiving one from the Mayor of Fylde, as well as those who were placed in their classes.