First Hunt - Astley - With Cheshire Drag Hunt

Sat, Jan 11 2014 12:34
Today I photographed my first hunt. Many thanks to all at The Cheshire Drag Hunt for allowing me to photograph the day and to Brian for letting me to tag along in the car.

The full galleries can be seen at http://horseplayphotography.co.uk/Galleries/Events/Astley-Hunt-January-11th-2014/index.html


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A beer before perhaps?

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Hounds Away

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Photographers waiting

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Leading the way

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You shouldn't have parked there

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Fields of joy

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The line up

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Concentrated

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Easy

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It's not my fault you got so mucky, honest

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The hounds wait

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Let's go again

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Getting through the turnstiles

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Is anybody out there?

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What you looking at?

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Over we go...

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I can fly

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Smoking skyline

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Fancy being hunted by hounds today?

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Im gonna get him

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Hold on tight

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Returning

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Carneddau Ponies Collection with Gareth Jones and the Llanfairfechan Farmers

Wed, Nov 13 2013 02:59
The collection of the Carneddau Ponies is a centuries old tradition carried out by generations of the families who farm the hills. The ponies are collected and checked before being sent back out to roam freely atop the magnificent mountains. The Welsh Mountain Ponies are a breed that go back to Celtic times and possibly further. This is a studied rare breed and needs rare breed status to help protect them. Check out my day in photographs.


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Gareth Wyn Jones and the team of local Farmers from Llanfairfechan preparing to ascend the mountain.

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Briefing for a BBC Documentary

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Leading the round up

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Will Observing the roundup

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The next generation

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The first approach of the Carnaddau Ponies

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We see you

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Liam spotting

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A journey, a landscape

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Aged paths

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Herd together

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Stunning natural beauty

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Quad roundup

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Runaway

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The bike crew

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It's all down hill from here

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Wild horses roaming the plains

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Followed the same path

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To the field

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Hustle

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Then or now

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Returning to the farm

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Gareth happy with the days collection

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Pony

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Protect me mommy

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Hardy

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Fresh Pastures

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Look at my beautiful mane

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Together

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Contrasts

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Colours

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Wild things

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Cute pony

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Everything in this field in black and white

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Handsome rogue

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Roundup up for a check up

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Still Observing

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Now directing

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In the ponies go

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To have a check over and get their hooves inspected

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All together now

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Come on little one

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Barefoot hooves

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Our turn next

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Finding our ponies

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The round up team

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These ponies

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Four furry ponies


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Northern Hackney Horse Show 2013 - Bakewell Showground

Tue, Aug 13 2013 07:08
This weekend of the 10th and 11th of August I was invited down by the Northern Hackney Horse Club to provide them with some photographs at the Annual Show.

Here is a selection that document what I saw on my meeting with this incredible but rare breed. For more information on the Northern Hackney Horse Club visit the website http://www.nhhc.org.uk/ or Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/groups/280843051972856/

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His and Hers

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International Event

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Encouraging the next generation

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Waiting

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Traditional, fun.

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Somewhat Regal

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Generational

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Observing

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Wheels and legs

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For Mr & Mrs

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The Judge

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In every detail

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Action

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Judges drinking action
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A generation gone

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Elegance in construction

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Pedals

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Fashions

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Champions

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Look

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Appleby Horse Fair 2013

Tue, Jun 11 2013 10:10
Last Friday I visited Appleby Horse Fair for the first time. I was not entirely sure what I was expecting to find at the Fair having only ever read newspaper reports, which are often purposefully negative. I wanted to see the horses and get a glimpse of the festivities of a culture i know little about.

For this trip I was travelling on the back of my Dad's Motorhorse. After a rather uncomfortable ninety minutes sat pillion we arrived at Appleby.

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The first thing to say about Appleby Horse Fair is that I was amazed at the conditioning and quality of so many of the horses. With Cobs a plenty the striking Paints were almost all looking exceptionally healthy and happy.

Down by the river Eden the skilled horseman rode bare back and free, enjoying the gaze of the many Travellers and tourists watching from the banks.

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I have attended many Clinics and Shows and been able to view and learn to understand the importance of the relationship between horse and owner and how this is the most important aspect in learning to work together. I have learnt a little about dressage and plenty about natural horsemanship. The Gypsie and Travellers were certainly showing their horses this fine day.

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One of the things i really enjoyed seeing was the horses being bathed and the gentleness with which they were washed down.

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The main attraction of Appleby is perhaps seeing the horses swimming. Guided down the ramp to the river the horses i saw would usually just walk in to the water.

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Once in the water the fun would begin and the many Gypsies and Travellers riding there cobs would be the focus of many a camera. Some of the photographers even got into the water to involve themselves in every photograph. Congrats guys, you must be the most photographed photographers ever.

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There was much to see on the roads too as the Gypsy Cob Drivers were out in force.

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And then there were the miniatures. This chap little one was particularly adorable.

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From what I saw at Appleby it is a fun and festive gathering of a community. Whilst I was only around for a few hours I sensed a great atmosphere and was greeted regularly by the friendly folk i saw.

I would highly recommend anyone visits this traditional gathering of the Gypsy and Traveller communities.

You can view the complete gallery from Friday by visiting http://horseplayphotography.co.uk/Galleries/Events/Appleby-Horse-Fair/
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Manor House Stables - in training

Mon, Apr 23 2012 03:01
Last week I visited Manor House Stables to observe the horses in training. Many thanks to Tom Dascombe for enabling me to see his stable of thoroughbreds being put through their early season paces.

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Tom Dascombe (Trainer) and Colin Gorman (Assistant Trainer) observe the early morning gallops

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Andy Jackson (Head Lad) exercising Brown Panther


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Preparing the stalls

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Switcharooney checking out what is going on

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Taking the plunge

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Spa therapy

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Cuban Tash on the Gallops

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Manor House Stables - gotta love horses

Tue, Jan 24 2012 10:53
Last Thursday I visited Manor House Stables, the racing yard of trainer Tom Dascombe. Andy Jackson, Head Lad, gave me a tour and educational introduction to the highly competitive world of professional horse racing.

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At 645am I arrived at my sat nav destination. I had been invited along by Tom to demonstrate my work and get an insight into the working of the yard.

Reading about Manor House Stables it soon becomes apparent that it is a highly professional and well invested operation. Boasting a new state of the art aqua complex, all-weather Safetrack gallops and a sports science team of their own the traditional horseman's methods of training are being combined with cutting edge medical and technological advancements. Have a look on the Manor House website www.manorhousestables.com and follow Tom's blog http://www.manorhousestables.com/mhsnews/ or twitter http://twitter.com/TomDascombe to discover more about just how advanced this operation is.

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Much of my work with horses is done on livery yards with the horse and owner engaging with one another and their home environment. I look to describe the relationship and portrait the character. At Manor House as a guest and without a working brief I wanted to try understand the mechanisms behind the success that this racing yard has had.

My expectations were far removed from the austere regimental conveyor belt i had conjured.

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I found Manor House to be one of the most welcoming and friendly yards I have visited. The horses trained at Manor House are high calibre thoroughbreds given the best facilities and medical care money can buy. And yet money can't buy love.

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I cannot comment on the detail to making Manor House a success as I do not have the knowledge of racing, training and business. I do know that the best care a horse can receive is when it is loved and has a strong relationship with its owner. On a chilly January day the bright smiles of horse and rider trotted on by. "You gotta love horses to work in this game" said Andy Jackson.

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