Statement from BCDC Committee

Update from BCDClub Chairman July 2022

Hi there, Club members,

I do hope you are all coping in these exceptional weather conditions. Remember to stay hydrated and don't take animals out in the highest temperatures unless absolutely necessary. Lecture over!

As we find ourselves halfway through the year, thought I'd touch base with you all about what has gone on since my last report and remind you of what's still to come this year.

Following a great camp in May, where Phillipa Howe joined Sara as a trainer, we held our ODE which included a Gateway class for the first time. British Carriagedriving are promoting this competition among the Clubs to encourage folks to either start competing or to get back into competing again. Our event had 8 competitors alongside several others, competing at Novice and Open. Everyone had a good time and everything was ably run by Sara, Trish and Annie along with a willing bunch of volunteers. May I say at this point, there is a lot of work that goes into running an event like this. Sending schedules, receiving entries, setting up course, dressage arenas and everything that happens on the day itself. We could not run these events without all the help we often ask for. So, if you hear us asking for help,, please consider offering your services, either before the day or on the day (if you're not competing!), even if it's only an hour or so.

We held an afternoon dog walk on 18th June out of Weald village which was attended by half a dozen people, 4 dogs and a grandchild! Not a huge number but everyone enjoyed it and Cathy White very kindly opened her garden up to all for a picnic afterwards. Thanks to Cathy and Anita for organising the walk.

On the 19th June, three of our members ventured into the showing world for the BDS Annual Show at Smiths Lawn, Windsor. It was an enjoyable day with some of us gaining placings within the top six in the Pleasure Driving and Exercise Vehicle classes. It was a first time for Marilyn and Sharen as her groom. Annie had been as a groom with me before but it was her first time as a driver. They both had fun including driving in front of the Royals, sadly, not the Queen! Our farrier, Dan Foley, also won the best shod horse award in Pleasure Driving with my Freddie. Three of the top seven in the class were shod by Dan! Some achievement. Dan will certainly come back to Bradbourne at some point to do another hoof talk!

We've got lots more to look forward to in the year ahead:

30th July 2022
Club ODE incl. Gateway classes and the opportunity to get competence cards signed off. Entry forms are out now on both Club Facebook pages and on our respective websites.
This is a joint event with Weald Harness Club and is being held at
Old Hay, Nettlestead with permission from Jane Lamb who has also been organising all the obstacle building, cones course and dressage arena.
Please consider helping on the day (if you're not driving), stewarding on an obstacle, running cones course, stewarding the dressage arena, loads more to do! We do need to make it a real joint effort. Jane has done a huge amount of the work already including organising a party in the evening for her birthday. Everyone involved is invited! There will be a catering van on site during the afternoon and evening.
Should be a fun day and evening!
13th August 2022
This is not a Club event but Sarah Owlett is holding a cones evening with picnic at Absoloms Farm. Sarah is a loyal Club member and very generous in the use of her farmland so please support this if you can.
Further details will be available soon

25th August 2022
Gill Batt is coming back to Bradbourne to give us more information on bitting of the driving horse. She will use 2 turnouts with different bits to demonstrate how the bits work in the mouth and how we can determine what bits may be best for our animals. This is an evening event starting about 7pm and finishing about 9.30pm.
The cost will be £10 for all (£15 if your turnout is used)
We do have one turnout to work with, driven in a snaffle but we do need another, driven in a different bit, maybe a Liverpool mullen or archmouth or one with a port or any other type. If you want to bring your horse/pony to drive, please contact me on It'll be first come first served as long as your bit fulfills the criteria. Please also contact me if you want to attend as a spectator.
Ad for this will be out very soon. Please note this is mostly an outdoor event but starting in the clubhouse

17th September 2022
Club ODE Team Challenge
This year we are running our ODE after camp at Absoloms Farm as a Team Challenge event. This is a tried and tested format from the past (not tried it personally).
Competitors will not know who their team mates are until the morning of the event. All teams will be drawn randomly once all entries are in. It's a great opportunity to chat with others you may not have spoken to before!
Further details and schedule will be available soon

16th October 2022
We are lucky to welcome back Barry Collyer, an excellent horseman who uses gentle yet effective methods to develop relationships with both his own and other peoples' horses and ponies. This enables him to work through any issues they may have, anything from rudeness on the ground to poor loading, most problems can be addressed.
Barry will be doing a clinic so needs willing volunteers with their horses. He will do 4 one hour sessions during the day. If you would like Barry to work through an issue with your horse/pony, please let me know on quite soon, as he will need some information on you and your animal to give him time to look at how to approach the issue you present. First come, first served basis. We also want folks to come and watch. Barry will try to answer any queries you may have about what he does.
He will charge horse owners with their animals £20 per horse and spectators £10 (or £5 if you only want to do a morning or afternoon)
Ads will come out in due course but the day will run from 10-4 with a break for lunch at 12pm (soup and rolls will be available)
We hope you are able to support both Barry and our Club by coming on the day.
Full details available in due course

We also have a bingo night coming up in November, date tbc

And don't forget there's only 19 Fridays before our AGM and Christmas Meal on 2nd December!

In the meantime, do consider coming to at least some of our events and clinics. We always love to see you all.
Take care and stay safe.
Happy driving.
Best wishes
Debbie Tatton,  
Chairman, on behalf of the BCDC Committee