After a busy and successful 2019, I ended the season grooming for Daisy Bathe and Emily Finston at Bicton International in Devon, straight from being site manager at Osberton International for BEDE Events.
Both had nice successful runs in tricky conditions after having a period of wet weather that has only just really finished before I’m writing this.
Helen West and her team did a fab job to keep the show on the road (or the field) and are so lucky to have fab facilities at Bicton Arena.
I certainly had my work cut out at Osberton for the same reason with challenging conditions through the set up, competition and break down, but having a great team around me, we managed to move arenas and maintain them throughout to keep the conditions near perfect for the whole week.
After all this I made the annual trip for what I think is the seventh year over to Monart Equestrian in Ireland to help Polly & Niall Griffin run their sale.
after a super busy two weeks, I flew home for a day to unpack, wash and repack before we drove down to Gatwick to the fly out to Florida for a couple of weeks family holiday! I don’t know which I was more tired from, a season eventing or two weeks in Florida but I had the most amazing time driving on the wrong side of the road and seeing all my childhood past yet again!
I had most of December off to spend some time at home with family and enjoy the Christmas period.
I did spend a few days driving a hunt lorry and covering staff members on yards as well building a few fences for this years new Eventing Spring Carnival at Thoresby.
I started 2020 course building at Oasby Horse Trials near Grantham for BEDE events. After having some rather wet days and walking round Oasby as we couldn’t drive due to the wet ground only the week before, we were blessed with a few amazing dry and sunny days, and Oasby 1 saw four full days of competition to start the year off. I did have a day at Isleham with Team Bathe consisting of Daisy Bathe, Emily Finston and Mary Edmundson all having a nice first run of the season and a great day it was too.
After Oasby, I had three days XC Stewarding at Lincolnshire Horse Trails. This is always a lovely event being my closest to home, and having helped out there for some 15 years now and not missed one, I was glad to be back at the Showground. We again had 3 great days nearly in the sunshine but the whole eventing family were getting nervous with this dreadful coronavirus looming round the corner and taking over the world. With that, on the Monday after the horse trials had finished, all eventing was cancelled with immediate effect, closely followed by all equestrian sports. Such a hit for a everyone involved in the sport from riders, grooms, owners, contractors, volunteers and trade stands let alone the organisers who rely solely on events for their livelihood.
The week before, I had literally just pegged all the arenas out at Thoresby, so that week I had to go and pull down and pack everything away, to then transport all the fences back to Osberton for storage over the summer. It was very sad and heartbreaking knowing we wouldn’t be running the new event that everyone was looking forward too and some three weeks later, I’m sat writing this blog still not knowing when we can get going again.
COVID- 19. A world wide pandemic that has now hit home hard realising we can’t just nip and buy this, or go a see a friend, or go and cut Grannies lawn and eat her biscuits as there is always some in the back of the cupboard because she cant reach them! (no doubt they will be out of date next time I see her)
For these reasons, it’s now been a quiet few weeks, and no doubt still a few quiet weeks to come. It’s nice to have some family time, and catch up on the winter jobs at home, but how long can this go on for. I would just like to say, please if you don’t need too, don’t go out. Just stay at home and save life’s, and enjoy being with family while you can. We are all thinking of the families this has effected, and of course all our nurses and staff, the farmers and key workers that are risking their lives to keep our country going! #getwellsoonboris!
Farewell for now – Stay Safe