Somerley Park Horse Trials shuts up shop

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Somerley Park Horse Trials is shutting up shop after 17 years.
Somerley Park Horse Trials has ceased to operate after 17 years. © Mark Chappell

British Eventing has lost another popular fixture with the demise of Somerley Park International Horse Trials, near Ringwood in Hampshire.

Organiser Suzie Cotterill said the decision to cease operating the event was “extremely difficult”.

“We have been running a very popular event in a stunning location for many years. However due to rising costs associated with the event and location, we simply have to draw the event to a close,” said Cotterill, who has been involved in the event since its inception in 1997 and is also a member of the BE Board of Directors.

“On behalf of myself and everyone involved with the Eleda Equestrian Events Organising team behind Somerley Park Horse Trials, I would like to thank everyone for all their kindness and enthusiasm over the years, from the riders, owners and their supporters, to our many volunteers who have endured every weather, as well as the trade-stand holders and our local supporters.

“Thank you also to all our sponsors who have been so loyal to us in offering their invaluable support and financial backing,” Cotterill said.

“This year was a great success and a legacy to Adele Schardt, we will find an event that meant much to Adele and have our CIC2* trophy presented in her and Somerley’s name.”

BE Chief Executive David Holmes thanked the team involved with the event, and also thanked Lord Somerton for hosting the event at the Somerley Estate.

“We are very sorry to see this much loved fixture lost from the calendar, but will be trying our utmost to find another suitable replacement venue for this region in the future,” Holmes said.

The 2016 Fixtures calendar will be confirmed in early November.

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