The rains of spring are behind us, and the short UK summer is almost here. For those that compete in any type of equestrian event from endurance to dressage, this is a time to travel locally or around the country to take in some amazing events.
There are several large and small shows, events and competitions across the UK over this June, July and August. To help you to plan to attend, here is a summary of what to see and do that is horse related around the country over the summer months.
Summer Equestrian Events
There are several very high-profile events this summer in the UK. Most of these are over several days and focus on in a specific sport from racing to eventing and show jumping to dressage.
- June 4-5 – The Derby Meeting (Surrey) – this is a wonderful family event with picnics, a ladies day and of course, the actual Derby Day. This event brings in people from all over the world. For those who appreciate horse racing, this is an event you will not want to miss.
- June 9-12 – Bramham Horse Trials (West Yorkshire) – this is a combination of a sporting event and a chance to meet and talk to others who value amazing horses and riders. This year there will be over 170 horses and riders competing on the course, with some of the best eventers on show those also competing in Brazil later this year.
- June 14-18 – Royal Ascot (Berkshire) – needing no introduction, the Royal Ascot is a must see event for anyone with an interest in fast horses and incredible competition. With the Queen in attendance, this is sure to be a memorable race.
- June 16-19 – Bolesworth CSI (Chester, Cheshire) – for anyone appreciating showjumping and beauty of the horse, the Bolesworth CSI offers dressage, cross county, and show jumping with multiple events held on each day. There is also an elite sports horse auction, a dog show and some interesting events you won’t see at other venues, including celebrity camel racing.
There are other events in June as well, including the British Jumping Derby in Hickstead, West Sussex on the 23rd through the 26th.
While a bit slower in scheduling, July also offers some great opportunities to take in some annual events.
- July 7-10 – Barbury Horse Trials (Wiltshire) – as always, the Barbary Horse Trials will highlight world class eventers from around the country preparing for the Olympics in Rio. You will not only enjoy the evening, but you can also take in the sheep show and the more than 70 shops that will be on the grounds.
- July 26-31 – Royal International Horse Show (Hickstead, West Sussex) – as one of the most extensive outdoor shows in the country, the Longines Royal International Horse Show is a must for any horse lover. This is also one of the oldest horse shows in the world, now in its 109th year, offering showjumping, showing, as well as competition for all ages and from ponies through to horses.
There are also many clinics and local riding club presentations throughout the month of July.
August typically brings the heat of summer weather, but that won’t stop the equestrian events from happening across the country.
- August 5-7 – Festival of British Eventing (Gatcombe, Glos) – this is truly a family friendly type of weekend. While the eventing will take center stage, there is also a top rate shopping village, some show riding events in the area, dressage and a chance to see some of the up and coming young pony club riders and young event horses. Depending on the day or days you attend you may also be able to take in the Parade of Royal Agricultural College Beagles and the prestigious Corinthian Cup.
- August 21-28 – Scope Show Jumping Festival (Staffordshire County) – held at the showgrounds in Staffordshire County, this is an event with a great even with a very modest price for admittance as well as free parking and a range of trade stands to stock up on all your equestrian needs.
Of course, all eyes will be on the events from August 5th through to August 21st at the Olympics in Brazil. However, if you can’t get to the Olympics, you can always enjoy truly world-class equestrian events right here at home in the United Kingdom.