April 2, 2008

HRH The Princess Royal, Graham Suggett, and Nick Wallbridge

The National Equine Database (NED) was officially launched at the National Equine Forum (NEF) last Thursday, and the concept was highly commended by HRH The Princess Royal.

Graham Suggett OBE JP DL HonDSc FIBiol FRAgS, Director of Equine Development at the British Equestrian Federation and Consultant to the NED Board, presented the launch, describing NED as a win-win situation for the equestrian industry. During the lunch break attendees were invited to test out the database for themselves at a specially set up online facility managed by the programme's technical expert Nick Wallbridge.

Graham Suggett said: "I have rarely been so excited about a project as I am about this database. It is pleasing on the eye, easy to use, fast, contains an incredible amount of information and provides innumerable services of value to everyone concerned with equines. Once the equine industry has provided the remaining pedigree and performance data this will be a truly world-beating resource and I feel very privileged and proud to have been part of the team."

HRH The Princess Royal, who has attended the NEF for the past six years, enjoyed a personal 'tour' of the database. She enthusiastically declared in her closing address: "Three cheers to Graham Suggett and the National Equine Database. It really is good to see it up to this stage."

Jonathan Shaw MP Minister for the Horse Industry presented a government overview of the opportunities for the equine industry. He raised concerns about exotic disease control and welfare. He highlighted the importance of NED as a tool in helping to manage disease in the UK and described it as an excellent example of industry and the government working well together.