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An update from our Somerset and Dorset Area Representative

The following article, written by Yvonne Campbell, was submitted for inclusion in the 2022 Yearbook but unfortunately omitted.

I have been an area rep since about 1989, I was on the committee at the time, the meetings were often at Creenagh Mitchell’s home at Knighton.  They started at 2pm and we were late if it hadn’t finished by 4.30! It was decided we should have a Somerset rep, as other areas already had them and I was appointed.

As an area rep it’s not just members I get involved with.  In the summer, I received a telephone call from a member of the public, concerned about several ponies.  The owner was not a member, the ponies pure bred, but not registered.  With the owner’s help and that of a welfare society, vet and farrier these wild ponies are now able to be safely handled in pens and their welfare needs addressed.

My concern is there are too many people now looking for Exmoors for conservation grazing. We know they are hardy, but they sometimes get sick and not all sites have good access, handling facilities and some new owners do not have enough knowledge of equines.

Fourteen of my own ponies are lucky they run on a beautiful conservation site on which I spend hours walking my dogs.

Another pony I saw last summer was a very much loved mare, on loan to a teenage girl.  I came across this pony quite by accident.  An advert for rug repairs was in my local feed merchant and on this advert was an Exmoor.  I did need a rug repaired but I was equally interested in who the Exmoor was?  On collecting my rug, I was invited to see her Capertons Silver Seagull 375/1 (Ellie) – a pony Jo Gingell and I had inspected as a foal in 2002.

I do hope 2022 is a better year for everyone.