Date:21st April 2013
Date: 5th February 2013
We have been asked to provide a slot for members' adverts on the web site, so until we can assess the need for a specific page for this, we have decided to place any adverts that are sent in here on the News Page.
Date: 29th January 2013
'The Golden Horseshoe Ride' is the topic for the next meeting of the Exmoor Society, Barnstaple Branch on Thursday 28th Febuary 2013, at 7.30 pm. Barbara Wigley, the current organiser of this equine endurance event is the speaker, and the meeting is held at The Castle Centre, Castle Street, Barnstaple, EX31 1DR. Everyone is welcome, friends and visitors £2.00
For further information - Julia Holtom 01598 763295
Date: 28th January 2013
The following bridleways are currently legally closed for use.
Sadly, Neil Giddings from the Fire & Rescue Service, was unable to attend, as the many floods in the area meant that his vehicle was in use and that he himself was unable to reach Wheddon Cross from the far side of Taunton. We are planning to invite Neil back in the spring/summer as his presentation sounds very interesting and relevant to all horse owners/riders. Look out for this extra meeting, which will be advertised on this website, as well as e mailed to all members.
Date: 1st October 2012
The Winsford Hill Ride
A group of thirteen members set off from Comers Gate on a bright dry day, escorted by Val Roberts and Barbara Wigley. The ride crossed the River Barle twice, climbed over the top of Withypool Hill, met up with a flock of sheep coming up the road from Westwater, and took in the newly 'groomed' bridleway to Parsonage Farm. We spotted a huge herd of Exmoor ponies, before taking a variety of tracks back along Winsford Hill to finish just before the rain set in. Sadly, the ice cream booth at Tarr Steps was closed, so there were no refreshments 'en route'.
Carol crossing the River Barle at Tarr Steps
Date: 3rd July 2012
The Brendon Common escorted ride.
Sixteen members met up on a surprisingly dry, if windy day at Dry Bridges. The route covered all of Exmoor's types of terrain - open moorland, woodland, and river valleys. Jeremy and Astra,who both know the area very well, kindly acted as guides - thank you. Ice creams and drinks were enjoyed at Malmesmead, before the ride along Badgeworthy Water, and then up to Brendon Two Gates, where four riders took the opportunity to return to their trailers, as they felt they had done enough, while the rest went on to enjoy the long canter along Cheriton Ridge. Sadly, one of the riders had a fall in sight of home, and had to be ambulanced off. The latest news is that she is recovering and still hoping to go to her school prom at the week end. We all send our best wishes for a speedy recovery.
This incident did bring home to me the importance of Hi Viz gear, mobile phones, and letting someone know your route in case of accidents.
Date: 28th May 2012
The first 'Bridleways Escorted Ride' took place yesterday, 27th May, from Comers Gate on Winsford Hill. I had set a maximum of ten riders for this event, and sadly, I had to turn several people away when we reached our quota. However, on the eve of the ride, we had four withdrawals, so on Sunday morning, the 'Magnificent Seven' (six new members and myself) set off to ride fourteen miles of bridleways and moorland, in beautiful sunshine. We took in a fairly deep ford, spotted a few deer, and passed quietly by two groups of Exmoor ponies.
An ice cream stop in Winsford was well received, and we finished with approximately three miles of open moorland, where all the horses (and the riders!) enjoyed some lovely long canters.
Keep your eye on the web site for more rides in the future, and please book early to avoid disappointment.
Date : 20th May 2012
The Golden Horseshoe Ride went ahead (not quite as planned) despite the terrible weather during April and early May, which made part of the course unrideable. Your Bridleways Association provided the second check point for the Pleasure Ride - not in Winsford as planned, but up on Winsford Hill, where the route was diverted, to avoid a seriously deep ford. The weather cheered up on the day, and riders and helpers enjoyed the sunshine.
Date : 7th April 2012
The West Somerset & Exmoor Bridleways Association will be sponsoring a Check Point on the Pleasure Ride at The Golden Horseshoe Ride this year. We will be in Winsford on Sunday morning, 13th May, checking horses through, providing drinks for riders and generally helping marshal the ride. Why not come and see us if you are not riding, and find out what we are planning in our area for the future?
Date: 26th March 2012
Check out the 'Information' page (under the Riding drop-down) for an update on misuse of bridleways.
Date: 10th March 2012
As horse riders we often have reason to be very grateful to the Air Ambulance services, so please read and sign this petition.
There is currently a petition to encourage the Government to exempt Air Ambulance services from duty on the fuel they
use, in the same way as the Lifeboats (RNLI) are exempt.
If we gain 100,000 signatures, Parliament is duty bound to debate the issue - currently we have over 17,000 signatures.
Thank you for your support for this magnificent volunteer funded service.
Please pass on to all of your UK friends.
The BHS 'Access Week' will run from May 18th to May 27th in 2012
Latest News on the Forestry Commission Sell-off
Date: 9 December 2011
The Independent Panel on Forestry has issued its progress report.
The British Horse Society welcomes the Panel’s recognition that there is an important continuing role for a national public forest estate in
Mark Weston, British Horse Society Director of Access, Safety and Welfare said: ‘It is imperative that the Panel, in their final report recognise that equestrians should not be discriminated against and that access for equestrians should be on the same basis as it is for our co vulnerable road users, walkers and cyclists.
The Society will continue to press for the permissive access that equestrians currently enjoy in our forests to be protected by the Forestry Commission dedicating higher rights for equestrians, (pursuant to section 16 of the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000) in our forests."
The Independent Panel on Forestry was established on 17 March 2011 by the Secretary of State, Caroline Spelman to advise government on the future direction of forestry and woodland policy in
The progress report can be accessed via
The British Horse Society enthusiastically welcomes the Chancellor’s announcement today, in his Autumn Statement, of a new £2m “Paths for Communities” grant scheme under which new paths carrying rights for equestrians, walkers and cyclists will be created.
BHS Chairman Dr. Phil Wadey said: “After years of patient campaigning, The British Horse Society’s fight to secure for equestrians the sort of provision previously available only to walkers and cyclists is beginning to pay off. We welcome the Chancellor’s recognition that public money, when spent on the creation of new rights of way from which motorised vehicles are excluded, delivers best value when all vulnerable users are catered for.”
BHS Director of Access, Safety and Welfare, Mark Weston said: “This is a hugely encouraging result after years of fighting for the rights of equestrians. With riders currently enjoying access to only 22 percent of all rights of way and carriage drivers faring even less well, and with those percentages set to diminish significantly as walkers acquire new rights of way, this initiative marks an important turning point.
“Following the Minister for Natural Environment and Fisheries’ comment in June that local authorities, when creating paths, should ensure that horse riders are accommodated as well as walkers and cyclists, it is clear that the strength of the BHS’s arguments has at last been acknowledged.”
For further information and pictures, please contact: Alison Coleman at The British Horse Society on 02476 840463 or email@example.com.