Nicky Townshend: June 2014

Nicky Townshend – Assistant Director of Blair Castle International Horse Trials keeps us up to date with plans for the 2014 and 2015 horse trials……

It has been an exciting time since I moved up to Blair Castle almost two years ago. I am really fortunate as I live on the estate in the most beautiful little cottage with my cat Ghost and my two horses in the field next door. Dunbar, a 15hh Connemara cross, is 34 and has taken rather well to his retirement here in Scotland. The Moose, my retrained racehorse is finding it a little more difficult to adjust. He still finds the beautiful Scottish landscape a little too wild for his liking, with deer roaming through his field – he certainly misses his arena riding.

I, on the other hand, could not think of anywhere better to live, work and ride. Working in the Estate office, just a stone’s throw from the stunningly beautiful Blair Castle, with our office looking out onto the Estate. Where better to put together one of the most picturesque and enjoyable events in the equestrian calendar – I pinch myself every day!

I work closely with the Event Director, Alec Lochore, as well as the Estate’s Farm Manager, Gordon Learmonth, and the Forestry and Game Keeping departments. Everyone embraces the event making sure that no stone is left unturned in the build-up to the horse trials.

Each summer we recruit a couple of interns known affectionately as “Alec’s Angels” who help me to keep everything in order, from advertising, trade stand applications, organising volunteers, dealing with contractors and booking stables. Plus keeping the website, Facebook and Twitter (@BCIHT) all up to date.

Next year we are extremely proud to be hosting the FEI European Eventing Championships 10-13 September 2015 and we see this year’s preparations as a stepping stone to next year’s incredible competition.

We have been working on the development of the 2015 FEI European Eventing Championship website which has just gone live. We are really pleased with the website and we are looking forward to getting feedback from our followers. As the 2015 event takes shape, it will become a one stop shop for all you need to know about the Europeans, from rider information, how to get around and where to stay as well as regular news stories and blogs on the preparations.

Now back to the last few 2014 trade stands applications and so many lovely things to buy. Luckily I will be too busy for retail therapy during the event but I can highly recommend the shopping experience at Blair so see you soon …