How horsey is your area?

BlueSocks

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28 May 2013
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A few weeks ago I was in the Lake District for a short holiday. I was really surprised at how few horses I saw up there. I was there for a week and didn't see a single person out riding, and bearing in mind I was out walking every day often on bridleways I thought this was quite odd? And very few in fields either.
Here in N Derbyshire / S Yorkshire were I live there are horses everywhere! The lanes and bridleways are covered in horsey evidence, hoof marked roads and lots of poo!! Fields with horses in / stables and livery yards all over the place. We also have lots of good riding here and many local riding clubs. It was a real contrast up in the Lakes - maybe my area is just very horsey and I take it for granted?
How horsey is your area - and any Lakes dwellers feel free to correct me if I'm wrong!
 

NeilM

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Nth Somerset
I'm in North Somerset and the place is alive with horses.

We also go to West Somerset a fair bit and although there is a lot more space down there, you still see a lot of horses / evidence.
 

khalswitz

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NE Scotland
Very, very horsy. Had a specialist up to see my horse last year, and he couldn't believe how many horses we drove past just in the 1/2 hour on the back road from the station to my yard. However the hundreds of horses in fields don't correlate to much competing - three comp venues within an hour, closest BE this year 1.5 hours away with only two within a two hour drive.
 

acorn92x

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Surrey
In the area of Surrey that I live in, not very. We have a few riding clubs and show venues but most of which are a good 30-45 minute drive away. Livery yards are around but most are DIY and part and full livery comes at a very premium price! If you drive closer towards Epsom and outside the boundary of the M25 then obviously you get closer towards horsey territory.
 

Kezzabell2

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Basingstoke
I'm in north Hampshire, I'd say it was quite horsey here but no where near as horsey as it used to be! there used to be about 40 horses on my yard, now its just me and my 3! I can hack out and not see another horse, in fact since my horse was backed and home in April I've only hacked passed 2 other groups of horses and we go out a few times a week!

back in the day, (13yrs ago) we used to pass lots of other horses when we were out hacking! though we don't have the greatest hacking in my village, loads of road work! no bridleways :(
 

Carrots&Mints

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UK
Very horsey round here, quite a lot of top producers and plenty of people qualifying for HOYs round our area (North West England), also tonnes of livery yards and plenty of horses
 

Tash88

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Considering that I'm in SW London/Surrey, the area where I have my horse is rather horsey, but this is probably because there are a lot of yards in a rather small space. Show venues aren't too far away; there is one within 30 mins, Merrist Wood isn't too far away and Hickstead is about an hour - there are good motorway links to horsier areas. However it certainly isn't horsey compared to places like Gloucestershire and it probably isn't the kind of place where professional riders would set themselves up.
 

Sukistokes2

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I live in Kent
Until about ten years ago there were only a couple of people that kept horses around the village. Over the years that has increased and now it is quite horsey which is really nice. Riding is pretty good, luckily the Torry Hill estate allow riding with permission.
 

Annagain

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My very local area (just west of Cardiff) is strange, lots of livery yards, farms with horses etc but there's not really any reason for it to be, other than it being about as close to the city centre as you can get with some fields for horses to live in. Hacking involves busy roads that weren't really designed for the number of cars they have on them. We have one local competition venue about 2 miles away, which does very grass roots stuff. Within about 20 miles of me there is more on offer. There's at least 5 riding clubs, all with decent memberships. The local agricultural college and a few other venues offer BS and BD as well as plenty of unaffiliated and there's another venue that runs its own competitions every week. There are also some great beaches and forestry to ride in - all within a 30 minute trailer journey. The only thing we're lacking is a BE venue or two - the closest would be Chepstow, Howick or Mount Ballan all within about 3 miles of each other about 40 miles away. Not miles in the greater scheme of things, but it would be nice if it was closer, and if we could use it for schooling!
 

Tern

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Gloucestershire
My area is Gloucestershire but because the horses are at home we live in a Village and apart from a farm and the hunt kennels down the road it is VERY un-horsey!
 

Equi

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The farm two doors down breeds miniatures, the neighbour on the right is a foaling service/hunter and the one on the left is a racehorse breeder. Just up the road a bit is an equine rescue and i know about four or five people who have horses. Just up from that is Event Ireland grounds. So just a little bit.
 

Cinnamontoast

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Hugely so. There are at least 15 yards within a 20 minute radius. I don't know how that compares to anywhere else, but I think that's pretty horsey. It's all terribly incestuous, everyone knows of someone else and the yard and what the person or place is like.
 

PolarSkye

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Right on the Berkshire/Hampshire border and you can't swing a cat around here without hitting a livery yard, field full of horses, venue or riding school.

P
 

wench

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Quite a few horses, not very many competiton centres in reasonable driving distance, and the ones there are tend to hold competitions on the same day. Most of the people with horses are idiots as well!
 

laura_nash

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Ireland
I've just moved to Ireland, county Mayo. There are lots of horses, but hardly any are ridden. We have loads of farmers around here with Connemara brood mares (mostly barren now as the market has died). Also quite a lot of other nice horses (TB / ISH types) in the fields, but no evidence of any riding. There is one family that jumps there's in a field (over some seriously scary jumps) and apparently compete, but yet to see any evidence of hacking out even though the roads are very quiet and there are some off road tracks (not that common since Ireland doesn't have bridleways) and some amazing hacking about 6 miles away at Ashford Castle. There is a lot of horsey stuff to the south (Ballinasloe area) and north (Connemara) but not where I am.
 

Pearlsasinger

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W. Yorks
I have a friend who moved her horses earlier this year to the Lake District. She had only found one bridleway, that she could get to easily, and she would have to turn round and go back along the same route unless she wanted to be out all day. Another problem for her is that the local roads are very narrow and busy, so not pleasant to ride on.

This friend moved from a hamlet where there are 18 privately owned horses kept on various small holdings and a stud. There is a thriving local RC in the area, several livery yards and a few small competition venues within half an hour's travel. We have a mixture of road and bridleway hacking with circular rides from 10 minutes to 5 hours, so very different from where friend has moved to .
 

WelshD

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I live in a nice rural spot in Northamptonshire but there is practically no good hacking amazingly enough. MK Eventing, Addington and Onley grounds are all within striking distance and busy but driving around here you rarely see people out and about

I used to work in Tamworth and always thought that nearby Cannock was very horsey looking
 

Cinnamontoast

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We come off Jumction 25 of the M1 to visit the mil who lives near Bramcote. There are tons of ponies in the field as we come off. Looks like a nice yard, definitely going to traffic proof the horses!
 

Spot_the_Risk

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Devon
Eastern edge of Dartmoor (home) and central Dartmoor (work) both very horsey but very few livery yards central Dartmoor, lots of horses kept at home, hunting, few hunter trials, Eastern edge a few small yards. Blessed with fantastic hacking, but low on Competiton venues, I am more likely to meet other riders than cars when I hack out!
 

armchair_rider

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South Ox
South Oxfordshire is surprisingly horsey I think. There's quite a lot of yards locally and there must be at least 3 BE venues within an hour's drive of my house. Against which there isn't a major year round competition venue and i've never thought of it as being a good area for hacking (though I think some yards locally do have off road hacking).
 

Lexi_

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Liverpool is about the most unhorsey place going, except for Aintree (which is the other end of the city to me) and the mounted police! The suburbs go on for chuffing miles. Wirral is better but then you've got to go through the tunnels or over the bridge so the horsey bits are close but take ages to get to. Suppose I could swim to them...

When I was looking for a share horse I had to look at least 10-15 miles away before anything started to appear.
 

windand rain

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It used to be that Lincolnshire had the highest number of horses per head of population anywhere in Europe not sure if that still applies and of course there are a lot of horses but not many people so the small population of a huge county may be the reason
 

Clare85

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West Sussex
Pretty horsey where I am on the Surrey/Kent/West Sussex boarders. We have Oldencraig and Felbridge within a few miles, a few riding clubs very locally, Hickstead about 20 mins away, Edenbridge & Oxted Show, South of England showground, etc. There's not really any BE venues that locally - I think the closest one is probably Eridge, which is a fair drive.

In terms of yards, there aren't really many big/competition yards, it seems to be mainly small yards which only offer full livery or people keeping horses at home. There's one DIY yard very close to me and it's unbelievable how many horses they squeeze onto their land - the fields are so overgrazed - and when you go down there, the schools are full of people bombing around in canter, banging on their horse's backs and sawing away merrily on their mouths. Makes me shudder to think about it.
 

BlueSocks

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28 May 2013
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128
I have a friend who moved her horses earlier this year to the Lake District. She had only found one bridleway, that she could get to easily, and she would have to turn round and go back along the same route unless she wanted to be out all day. Another problem for her is that the local roads are very narrow and busy, so not pleasant to ride on.

This friend moved from a hamlet where there are 18 privately owned horses kept on various small holdings and a stud. There is a thriving local RC in the area, several livery yards and a few small competition venues within half an hour's travel. We have a mixture of road and bridleway hacking with circular rides from 10 minutes to 5 hours, so very different from where friend has moved to .
That's interesting - I love the Lake District and always imagined it would be somewhere I would possibly relocate to one day but now I've been thinking about the horsey side of it I'm not so sure. I must say, a lot of the bridleways we walked on started off OK but soon the terrain became far too hazardous with rocks and boulders for your average horse to contend with imo. Certainly there's no way I would ride my clumsy warmblood on many of them. To me they seem more suitable for the mountain bikers.
 

TheoryX1

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1 March 2010
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Bristol
We are just south of Bristol and its very horsey, although for some reason you would not expect it to be. There are lots of yards, plenty of tack shops, some nice venues for all disciplines within easy distances and its lovely to see lots of familiar faces out hacking, to stop and have a chat with, while your horse has a nibble of the hedgerow. The hacking in our neck of the woods is also great as well, with plenty of hills to get your horse fit on, and some nice off road riding as well. Of course we are also only 45 minutes from Badminton as well, even though technically its north of Bristol. All in all, quite a horsey little pocket of the country and we love it.
 
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