Horses bring equine excitement back to Norfolk Showground

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground. Pi

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

A much-missed buzz of competitive excitement returned to the Norfolk Showground as it hosted equestrian contests for the first time in two years.

Horses and riders from across the country competed at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, which featured many of the classes usually held at the Royal Norfolk Show.

And, fittingly, there was some royal involvement with five of the Queen's horses in action.

Judging of the best young gypsy cob at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground. Picture: DENI

Judging of the best young gypsy cob at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

In all, there were nine competition rings, and more than 800 entries in around 150 classes in the light horse, heavy horse, private driving and scurry sections.

Maria Skitmore, equine coordinator for the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association, said organisers were overjoyed to see such activity at the venue again after two consecutive Norfolk Shows were cancelled due to the Covid lockdown.

"It is just great to be enjoying events again, everyone is so pleased to be back doing what they love doing," she said.


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"It has been like a mini Royal Norfolk Show, we have got the vibe and lots of activity and it feels really busy.

"The quality of entries has been superb, including five of Her Majesty the Queen's horses here today. It shows the level of competition here.

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"We have competitors from Norfolk, and from all across the country, so this really is a UK-wide event."

The show also saw elite riders competing in qualifiers for the Horse of the Year Show, and two new classes for rare native horses and ponies on the Rare Breeds Survival Trust (RBST) Watchlist.

Organisers decide to hold the event behind closed doors with no public spectators, in light of the continuing risks of coronavirus.

But it is part of their renewed drive to bring the showground "back to life" after lockdown, as the RNAA works toward the planned return of a full Royal Norfolk Show in summer 2022.

Spectators watch the judging of the ridden mountain and moorland class at the Norfolk Equestrian Sho

Spectators watch the judging of the ridden mountain and moorland class at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

World Horse Welfare rescue two-year-old Gilbert tries to help himself to Diane Henderson and her dau

World Horse Welfare rescue two-year-old Gilbert tries to help himself to Diane Henderson and her daughter Mia's lunch at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Judging of the best young gypsy cob at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground. Picture: DENI

Judging of the best young gypsy cob at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Wayne Matthews and three-year-old Remmy win the best young gypsy cob at the Norfolk Equestrian Show,

Wayne Matthews and three-year-old Remmy win the best young gypsy cob at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

RSPCA Miley, four, supreme champion in the Rescue Horses in hand class with Lisa Kerwood of Holbeach

RSPCA Miley, four, supreme champion in the Rescue Horses in hand class with Lisa Kerwood of Holbeach at the Norfolk Equestrian Show - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Judging of the best young gypsy cob at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground. Picture: DENI

Judging of the best young gypsy cob at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Spectators watch the judging of the ridden mountain and moorland class at the Norfolk Equestrian Sho

Spectators watch the judging of the ridden mountain and moorland class at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Groom Olivia Claxton, nine, left, and her twin Ruby, rider, with Greendown Joker 'Joey' who won four

Groom Olivia Claxton, nine, left, and her twin Ruby, rider, with Greendown Joker 'Joey' who won fourth in the Welsh section B in hand at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground. Pi

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground. Pi

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground. Pi

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground. Pi

Competitors in the Scurry Driving Championship at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Anne-Marie Bannar, nine, with her Shetland Dodger at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground.

Anne-Marie Bannar, nine, with her Shetland Dodger at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

Anne-Marie Bannar, nine, with her Shetland Dodger at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground.

Anne-Marie Bannar, nine, with her Shetland Dodger at the Norfolk Equestrian Show, at the Showground - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY


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