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15th August, 2017.

Eligible retailers are being urged to sign up to a scheme that reassures the public when buying animal medicines online.

The Accredited Internet Retailer Scheme (AIRS) was launched by the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) to counter concerns about buying drugs – including horse wormers - over the internet.

The scheme, launched in 2012, lets consumers know that by purchasing from an AIRS retailer they’re dealing with a reputable, UK-based seller.

There are now 41 accredited websites operated by 32 businesses with further applications in the pipeline.

Websites currently complying with AIRS can be seen here

A spokesman for VMD said: “We have worked closely with retailers to explain the assessment criteria and what changes they need to make to their websites for compliance with both AIRS and the Veterinary Medicines Regulations.

“While doing this, the VMD has built some very good working relationships with retailers and has gained a better understanding about how internet businesses operate.”

Although the scheme focusses on licensed veterinary medicines, applicants must declare that they do not make medicinal claims for non-medicinal products on their websites.

AIRS is open to all UK-based SQP [suitably qualified persons] retailers plus vet practices and registered pharmacies that supply veterinary medicines online.

Membership is voluntary and it’s free.

Retailers approved to join the scheme can display the ‘VMD Accredited Retailer’ logo with a unique accreditation number.

Find out more about the scheme here

The VMD is a government agency and the regulatory authority for animal medicines.


14th August, 2017.

Ekkia will return as sponsor of BETA International’s Fashion Show in January.

It will be the fifth year the French wholesaler has supported the trade fair’s catwalk show at the NEC, Birmingham.

Famed for its striking choreography and foot-tapping soundtracks, BETA International’s country clothing and ride-wear showcase is named after Ekkia's Equithème brand.

The Equihème Fashion Show is the first port of call for the trade fair's audience of industry buyers on the lookout for new stock.

“We’re thrilled that Ekkia has chosen to sponsor once again,” said BETA International organiser Claire Thomas. “The company has a great reputation for quality garments and contemporary good looks that are also hallmarks of the fashion show.”

Ekkia director Eric Imiola added: “The Fashion Show at BETA International is the place to unveil our new collections to customers in a fun and modern way.”

BETA International is the world’s leading trade fair for equestrian, country clothing, outdoor and pet products.

The 2018 show will take place at the NEC, Birmingham, from 21 to 23 January. For further information about exhibiting, contact James Palmer, telephone +44 (0)1937 582111, email or visit

ETN is the official media partner of BETA International.


14th August, 2017.

The fifth generation of the I’Anson family is to join British Horse Feeds.

Hattie I’Anson, daughter of sales director Will I’Anson, is to work for the North Yorkshire based feed manufacturer in sales support.

An international business with Spanish graduate, Hattie has competed with British Eventing. She starts with British Horse Feeds in October.


9th August, 2017.

An equine jewellery company that’s a regular exhibitor at many of the big shows and events had good cause to celebrate this week.

Griff Equine Jewellery & Giftware is run by Maggie Evans and Arthur Griffiths, mother and step-father of eventer Jonty Evans.

ETN spoke to Arthur on the day the news came though that Jonty’s crowd-funding campaign to raise £500,000 to secure the ride on his top horse had been successful.

Cooley Rorkes Drift (Art) had been put on the market by his owner, leaving Jonty desperately trying to raise the cash to keep the horse on which he represented Ireland at the 2016 Olympics.

“We’re all so emotional,” Arthur said. “the equestrian community has been phenomenal in its support. I know a lot of the international riders from all nations have pitched in, such is the camaraderie of their sport.

“The most wonderful part is that Art will now have a home for life with Jonty. And that means a lot because the two of them have such a bond, they almost share a brain.”

North Wales based Griff Equine Jewellery & Giftware exhibits at around 20 shows a year. Next stops for Maggie and Arthur, who often create bespoke pieces for customers, include Blair and Burghley horse trials.

Meanwhile they – along with Jonty’s sister Hannah Evans who helped co-ordinate the crowd-fund initiative – hope to get together for a family celebration soon.

“It’ll probably be at an event,” said Arthur. “And we’ll definitely be drinking a toast to Jonty and Art.”


8th August, 2017.

A supplement supplier has been reprimanded for making medicinal claims for an unauthorised product.

Feedmark Ltd was told by the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) to stop presenting SarVoid for the purpose of treating sarcoids in horses.

The claim was made in an advertisement distributed by email.

The Harleston, Norfolk based company had already been contacted by the government agency over similar medicinal claims relating to SarVoid.

SarVoid is not authorised as a veterinary medicine in the UK for use in the treatment or prevention of sarcoids.

In an Improvement Notice issued by VMD, Feedmark Ltd was told to remove all medicinal claims for SarVoid from its marketing material.

The company has complied.


8th August, 2017.

Show trader and ETN diarist Guy Roper reports from a very British weekend (4 – 6 August) at Gatters, also known as the Festival of British Eventing at Gatcombe Park, Glos.

There are very few more British things than a country show. And there are very few more British counties than Gloucestershire.

Someone once suggested, back in the days when every company had a mission statement, that Britain’s national tag-line should be "mustn't grumble". Well, maybe the time has come to change that stoic attitude.

This year's Gatters had the worst weather I can remember. Normally if it rains, it drains. That's why it's a fantastic venue.

The steep, twisty terrain was used by course-designer Cap'n Mark [Phillips] to beyond best effect for the cross country. All the punters said the competition in all classes was brilliant.

Trouble for me was that on the narrow shelf of the tradestand area between the car parks and the Park Bowl, things didn't quite stick by the script. Saturday's thunderstorms flooded the stand a few times and there was little one could do.

Silly mud

Frankly, the mud was silly. To be clear, mostly business was OK. But, as ever, it was a typical Gatters; a bit up, a bit down, covering costs. You'll never make a fortune here but that's not why you go.

It's a lovely event. One of my favourites and among the friendliest. Being there leads to future orders; you meet people you would never see anywhere else and that means follow-on sales in the leaner winter months.

But for some of the chums trading down the slope, the first two days were a literal wash-out with punters unwilling to cross the mud barrier to see what was on offer.

This raises a basic point which was addressed by event director Tim Henson in his welcome at the stand holders’ BETA breakfast. Over rather cold bacon rolls, Tim did his annual stressing of the importance of the tradestands to the event’s success. Apparently, we are a vital part of the offer…

And, crucially, this year he also mentioned the amount we pay for a pitch as a major part of the event’s income. And he said thanks.

Covering costs

Yes, I get that. But I have a baseline too. If I can't cover my costs because the admission price limits the number of punters - and some of them can't get to my stand because they don't want to fall over in the mud - I'm still stuck with diesel costs, staff costs, the accommodation bill (unless we stay onsite and walk up to the only showers - believe me with a new generation that's now an issue) and the still dodgy wi-fi.

Tim wanted feedback. He said that he wanted to know what his team did right and what was not right. So far so normal. But this year he explicitly raised the pitch fees. He wants to know if they are at the right level. I admire his openness.

I know nothing about the books at Gatters except the punters’ ticket price, what we pay for pitches and the sponsorship deals all pour in on the one side, while the logistics, security, impressive PA and commentary coverage all pour out on the other. Oh, and the prize money. Which isn't small.

I love Gatters; everyone that goes there does. It’s a rare and special place. I particularly appreciate the generosity of the Princess Royal in welcoming us all to what is basically her home and putting up with the inevitable consequences.

Bigger margin

But as a business, could I be elsewhere and do better? This weekend, maybe. Countryfile Live [which took place over the same long weekend at Blenheim] would probably have given me a better turnover and a bigger margin.

Then there are the upcoming British Riding Club champs up the road near Banbury, Oxon. Obviously it's a decision I have to make for next year.

Last time I wrote, I flagged up the changing audience for these events and the need for us traders and the organisers to note and adapt.

This was never truer than at The Game Fair at Hatfield House, Hertfordshire [the previous long weekend]. This was the first game fair I can remember that you could virtually get to on the Tube (which just seems wrong!) but many chums reported having their best show in years.

The passing pound is now equally in the pocket of the would-be country resident, not just those who live there. If there is to be a future for these events, then they need to embrace both.

Lightning strike

Back at Gatters, I encountered the best expression of Britishness I've heard of in a while.

And I so admired the lady who walked into the first aid tent after Saturday's storm to report: "I think I may have been struck by lightning". She had been, but her umbrella grounded the strike, leaving her with some burnt hair and a scorched jacket.

The only more British attitude I can think of would have been: "I think my friend may have been struck by lightning. What should I do?"

Maybe it's time to be less British about stand fees. Maybe it's time to think in different ways?

Tim Henson has opened the debate. Are the fees fair? Do they reflect the potential take? Can we sustain them in present market conditions?

Into the future, maybe event organisers should anticipate a different lightning strike. If pitch fees mean I can't cover my costs why would I go? Maybe it's time to grumble?




7th August, 2017.

January 2018 will see a wholesaler exhibit at BETA International for the first time in its 43 year history.

Saddlery Trade Services (STS) has been in business in Walsall since 1974.

“We have some great new products we want potential new retailers to see,” says Paul Jeffery.

“Most of all, we want to be proud of who we are – an old-fashioned, honest wholesaler who’s transparent and fair to all.”

Paul does much of the buying for STS, so is a regular BETA International visitor.

“BETA International is a must for trends and new ideas,” he adds.

STS will exhibit products under its own brand – Sheldon – as well as its wholesale lines.

Find out more about BETA International (21 – 23 January at the NEC, Birmingham) at or email


4th August, 2017.

Back on Track has appointed Sarah Peters as sales executive.

Based at the Swedish company’s new UK office in Reading, Berkshire, she’s also taking care of customer service.

Sarah joins the supplier of therapy products for horses, humans and dogs after five years as managing director of Cane End Stud Livery, also in Berkshire.

“I came across Back on Track several years ago, using it on my own competition horses,” said Sarah.

“I’ve seen first-hand the benefits of infrared technology to both horse and rider, so I’m very excited to be working with the company.”

Back on Track’s UK sales manager Georgia Keegan leads its UK team.


1st August, 2017.

The actress who plays Young Diana in the new WonderWoman movie is also a junior show jumper.

And now eight year old Lilly Aspell has won a sponsorship deal with Bates Saddles.

Lilly, from North Yorkshire, has another equestrian claim to fame. She’s the niece of Grand National winning jockey Leighton Aspell.

Riding her pony Turbo, Lilly was among the first to compete in the Bates Pony Elevation+ saddle.

See her in a clip from WonderWoman here :


1st August, 2017.

Two former Harry Hall sales-people have joined Trilanco.

Angela Pearson and Charlotte Ridge have been appointed area managers by the wholesaler to support its trade sales of Harry Hall International’s brands.

Trilanco agreed exclusive distribution rights of Harry Hall International to the UK trade last month.

Angela Pearson joins the Lancashire based wholesaler after 16 years with Harry Hall (formerly Matchmakers International). She will cover the north of England and Scotland.

Charlotte Ridge, who has three years’ trade sales experience, is to cover the south of England up to Staffordshire, Leicestershire and Norfolk, including the Channel Islands and Isle of Wight.

Angela and Charlotte are qualified City & Guilds hat and body protector fitters.

Angela has four horses and a beagle. Charlotte is a life-long rider with two horses.

The new roles are in addition to Trilanco’s existing area sales team.

“Angela and Charlotte’s new roles will help support trade customers with a much-extended range of equine and pet products,” said Trilanco’s managing director Martin Balmer.

Trilanco is now selling Harry Hall International’s Spring/summer 2018 range to the trade. Brands include Harry Hall, Caldene, Masta and Protechmasta.


1st August, 2017.

Experience and loyalty among the equestrian trade’s workforce are to be celebrated in ETN.

The prize for an ETN Long Service Award is an appearance in an upcoming issue of the leading equestrian trade magazine’s pages.

So tell us about your deserving employees. From the company co-director to a saddlery shop’s Saturday girl/boy, ETN would like to mark their long-standing contribution to our trade.

We need to know the employee’s name, his or her job title, how long they’ve worked for you – and why they’re a valuable member of your team. Do send us a picture too.

Please include your name, business name and location and telephone number and reply to


31st July, 2017.

Sammy Backstrom has returned to DJ Murphy in a new role as business development manager.

She previously worked for the publisher of Horse&Rider and PONY magazines in advertising before taking a short break.

Sammy, an accomplished show jumper, is leading a new team of advertising executives - Franchesca Slack, Lauren Brown and Chloe Lauchlan.

"With a combination of our print titles plus the digital and social initiatives we have in place, these are exciting times in publishing,” she said.


31st July, 2017.

Government funding has been secured by the British Equestrian Trade Association (BETA) for export missions to China, New Zealand and Sweden.

BETA has worked closely with the Department for International Trade (DTI) for a number of years to help equestrian companies exhibit at major overseas trade shows.

The latest round of funding applies to the China Horse Fair, Beijing (12-14 October 2017) with £2,500 grants available.

This is followed by Equitana New Zealand, Auckland (23-26 November 2017) with £2,000 grants available.

Then on 22-25 February, £1,500 grants are available for Eurohorse, Gothenburg, Sweden.

“We’re exhibiting at Equitana New Zealand for the first time and will consider attending China Horse Fair once again if there is enough interest,” said BETA’s chief executive Claire Williams.

As well as leading groups of exhibitors to overseas shows, BETA can display products on companies’ behalf for a small fee.

The latest DTI funding is available to eligible companies. Interested parties should contact BETA ( for more information.


24th July, 2017.

Battles is the new and exclusive distributor of a horse clothing range.

Lycra based rugs and show hoods by The Belvoir Rug Company will be available to retailers from the wholesaler.

The deal covers distribution to the trade in the UK and Ireland.

It takes effect from next Tuesday (1 August).

“We’re delighted to be partnering with Belvoir Rug Company to offer our valued customers technical and quality products made in England,” said Jim Bowen, managing director of Battles.

Battles also offers dog covers from the same supplier.


24th July, 2017.

Sarfraz Mian, CEO of bit specialist Neue Schule, is to lead a five-day, 285-mile cycle ride this week.

Deborah Hayward, British Equestrian Trade Association (BETA) press officer, will be among 30 other cyclists joining him from Wednesday (26 July).

Sarfraz initiated The Jo Cox Way, an annual cycle ride in memory of the Labour MP who was murdered last year.

He’s again leading the cyclists from her West Yorkshire constituency to the Houses of Parliament.

Sarfraz says he was inspired by Jo’s zest for life and passion for people and communities – regardless of race, creed or religion.

Cyclists on The Jo Cox Way will wear jerseys emblazoned with '#moreincommon'.

The words are from Jo's maiden speech in the House of Commons: “We are far more united and have far more in common than that which divides us.”

There is an open invitation for anyone wishing to join the ride for a single day to show their support. Donations can be made at

The Jo Cox Way starts from Princess Mary Stadium, Cleckheaton, on Wednesday, 26 July.


21st July, 2017.

Two new marketing designers have joined Faulks & Cox Ltd (FCL) to help with the company’s Red Gorilla launch.

The tubs and tools specialist is re-branding its stable of products – including Tubtrugs – to Red Gorilla ahead of a complete re-launch in January 2018.

“Anna Dabrowska and Keira Harvey have been recruited to our in-house marketing team to accelerate the re-brand,” says Adrian Gilliam, business manager at FCL.

Anna will work on Red Gorilla’s new livery and fresh point-of-sale stands and materials. She enjoys playing tennis in her spare time.

Keira, a recent Birmingham University graduate who loves riding, will be busy spreading Red Gorilla news across social media.

“With these appointments, we’re confident that Red Gorilla products will take an important place in all sectors of trade, replacing our current brands seamlessly,” added Adrian.

• Follow the Red Gorilla re-brand diary monthly in ETN.


21st July, 2017.

The winner of a new saddlery scholarship will receive £500 worth of workshop tools.

Just launched by Abbey England, applications are invited from trainee and apprentice saddlers, harness-makers and bridle-makers.

“It’s wonderful to see so many young and up and coming saddlers who are breathing new life into the industry,” said Richard Brown of Abbey England.

“They are the future of the saddlery world as they embrace new ideas and technologies combined with the history and heritage for which British saddlery is so well known.”

Knutsford, Cheshire based Abbey England is a one-stop-shop for saddlers’ workshop supplies.

To enter, write 500 words on why you should win, attach a photograph and email marked Abbey England Scholarship.

Applications close on 30 November.


17th July, 2017.

BETA’s Helmet Bounty Scheme, under which concussed riders are given vouchers towards new hats, has been extended to riding club competitors.

The British Equestrian Trade Association (BETA) and British Riding Clubs (BRC) have teamed up to offer the initiative at next month’s BRC NAF Five Star Horse Trials Championships.

Riders diagnosed with concussion by an event’s medical official are provided with £100 worth of vouchers towards the cost of replacing their old hat.

Vouchers must be redeemed with a participating BETA retailer.

“Improving rider safety is an integral part of our work and we are tremendously pleased that the scheme – effectively a hat amnesty – will help to drive home the message that hats should always be replaced when they have been involved in an incident,” said BETA executive director Claire Williams.

Riders taking advantage of the bounty must agree to their hats being returned to BETA and BRC passing on details of their injury.

More than 40 hats have been collected to date and returned to the research team at University College Dublin.

The scheme was initially launched last year with British Eventing (BE), then extended to racing late in 2016.


17th July, 2017.

Show jumping fans can watch The Rolex Grand Prix live from Aachen on Horse & Country TV this Sunday (23 July).

The class is one leg of the Grand Slam of Show Jumping, with one million euros going to the winner of the Aachen, Spruce Meadows and Geneva grands prix.

Coverage starts on Horse & Country TV in the UK and Ireland from 12.05pm on Sky 253.


17th July, 2017.

Roy Burek, the managing director of riding hat manufacturer Charles Owen, has become Professor Burek.

He has accepted an invitation to become an honorary visiting professor at the School of Engineering, Cardiff University.

Roy also joins the recently formed Concussion & TBI Prevention research group at the university.

“It’s an honour that you can only dream of and was totally unexpected,” he said.

Roy has undertaken extensive work into the science of brain injury, working with academic bodies worldwide.

He is currently supervising a €3.4 million project into the future of sports helmet standards.


17th July, 2017.

Two equestrian companies are in the running for Rural Business Awards, it’s been announced today.

Riders’ underwear specialist Derriere Equestrian has been nominated in the best rural clothing or accessories category.

Equestrian public relations company Holdsworth PR has made the short-lists for the best rural creative company and rural entrepreneur of the year awards.

The accolades, backed by the County Land & Business Association (CLA) and Amazon, will be presented in October.

A number of riding schools and are also short-listed for various awards.


11th July, 2017.

Lara Johnson has joined Charles Owen and Airowear as account manager covering northern England, Ireland and Scotland.

For the last 11 years, Lara and her husband David Johnson have run The Country Store at Collingham near Wetherby.

It will be “business as usual” at the West Yorkshire retailer, David told ETN, as Lara takes up her new role with Charles Owen and Airowear.

Before joining The Country Store, Lara worked in sales for Equestrian Management Consultants (the commercial arm of BETA - the British Equestrian Trade Association) and also for Friendship Estates.

"We’re thrilled to have Lara on board as we make our strategic change to amalgamate the sales teams of Charles Owen and Airowear,” said the brands’ UK and European sales manager Kate Bielawska.

Lara and David have two children. In her spare time, Lara enjoys riding and walking in the countryside.


10th July, 2017.

R&R Country is throwing a party this coming weekend (15/16 July).

The retailer is marking 20 years in business with a two-day celebration at its Selby, North Yorkshire and Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire stores.

Customers calling in will be treated to 20% discounts (exclusions apply), competitions and free ice cream.

R&R is also running a giant charity raffle. Proceeds will go to Hope Pastures, the Leeds based equine rescue and rehabilitation centre, plus Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland Air Ambulance.

“We want to give something back to our amazing customers who have supported us over the years,” said managing director Sue Moxon.

Suppliers providing raffle prizes include Mountain Horse, Fairfax, Pikeur, Musto, NAF, Animalife, Woof Wear, Brogini, John Whitaker, Hy, Kask, Noble Outfitters, Champion, Eurostar, Equilibrium Products, Saracen, Bedmax, Sophie Allport, Racesafe, Equetech, Liveryman and De Niro.

“Our suppliers have been so generous,” added Sue. “I can’t thank them enough.”

With everyone invited, it promises to be a party to remember. In the light of which both R&R Country stores will be closed until 11am on Monday, 17 July.


10th July, 2017.

Branded clothing specialist Tylers Horse & Country is to sponsor the equestrian ring at The Game Fair later this month.

The company is also running promotions for trade exhibitors wanting branded uniforms for the annual gathering of country sports enthusiasts at Hatfield House, Hertfordshire, on 28 – 30 July.

Tylers works with the likes of HKM, Horze, Pikeur, Bronte, Regatta Clothing and Musto to create personalised gear. It will have a tradestand at the event.

Other divisions of the company have similar offerings in the workwear and sportswear markets.

The Tylers Horse & Country ring at The Game Fair will host show jumping and equestrian themed displays.

Sophie Tyler, managing director of Tylers Horse & Country, said she was “looking forward to a very busy weekend.”

The Game Fair has been running since 1958. National Game Fair Ltd took over running the event from the Country Land & Business Association (CLA) last year.

Members of the British Association of Shooting & Conservation (BASC) are entitled to complimentary entry on all three days.


10th July, 2017.

Rob Carter and Leanne Rigby, who recently left sales jobs at Matchmakers International (now Harry Hall), have set up their own agency.

Carter Equestrian Agencies serves retailers in the north of England.

Brands taken on so far are saddlery by Stubben, Dutch company Horka, Firefoot (jods and rugs), IV Horse, Rugged Horse (breeches) and Ginger Ted (pet products).

Rob Carter had been a sales rep and then national sales manager at Matchmakers International for 31 years.

Leanne Rigby was with the same West Yorkshire based company for 17 years.

The couple is due to marry in East Yorkshire on 30 July.


4th July, 2017.

Wholesaler Trilanco has agreed an exclusive UK trade sales and trade distribution deal with Harry Hall International.

Trilanco is to distribute Harry Hall’s principal brands including Harry Hall, Caldene, Masta, Cottage Craft, Woofmasta and Tottie.

Trilanco says the arrangement will enhance its diverse equine and pet product range available to its retail customers.

Liz Hopper, managing director of Harry Hall, said: “With its brand-new warehouse and nationwide sales team, Trilanco is a brilliant partner for our brands.”

Martin Balmer, Trilanco’s managing director, commented: “We are delighted to welcome these well-known brands to our business and we look forward to working with Harry Hall to support the great ranges.

“This announcement is part of our overall strategy to provide retail customers with the best products and service in the industry.”

Asked about timing of the new distribution arrangement, Trilanco says it will be informing customers of the transition dates for the brands as they occur.


3rd July, 2017.

Horse Health Wessex Ltd has been fined £5,000 for placing an unauthorised veterinary medicinal product on the market.

The company pleaded guilty to contravening the Veterinary Medicines Regulations at Southampton Magistrates Court on 21 June.

Magistrates heard that Sarcoid Cleansing Salve and Super-S Cleaning Salve, marketed by Horse Health Wessex Ltd, had not been granted a marketing authorisation by the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD).

The company was given credit for an early plea.

Horse Health Wessex Ltd was ordered to pay a fine of £5,000 with a victim surcharge of £150 and costs of £250.


3rd July, 2017.

Abi Cannon has moved to Horse&Hound as senior media advisor.

She had been with publisher DJ Murphy on Horse&Rider and PONY magazines for 18 years.

Partially based at Horse&Hound’s new Farnborough offices, Abi is working on the title’s print, digital and social campaigns.


The British Equestrian Trade Association – recognised as the official representative for the equestrian manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade.

BETA International – the world’s leading trade fair for the equestrian, country clothing and pet product sectors.

British Equestrian Directory – an online directory with more than 10,000 contacts from the world of horse, pet and country.

Equestrian Trade News, East Wing, Stockeld Park, Wetherby, West Yorkshire, LS22 4AW.
Tel: +44 (0)1937 582111 Fax: +44(0)1937 582778 Email: