BANG ON BELTON 17th – 19th APRIL

This week sees the 3* International event at Belton truly kicking off the eventing internationals in style. The EWW team will be in attendance taking photos and reporting the all the action as the big boys and girls prepare for Badminton.

The BEDE team have ensured it’s not just the owners, riders and support teams that will be entertained and there truly is something for everyone, young and old.

The Belton Horse Trials website www.belton-horse.co.uk is full of ideas for a great day out. For those wanting to get a taste of eventing and country entertainment the organisers, BEDE Events, have organised free access to their Ringside Cafè for all National Trust members and visitors to Belton House. Their aim is to give visitors the opportunity to get a flavour of what goes on at the Horse Trials.

There is a host of exhibitions, competitions and arena based displays and such as an inter-hunt relay, gate jumping, a classic car rally, stallion parade, dog agility, horse ball and bio dynamic demonstrations (look hard enough and you spot one of the EWW reporters riding as a ginea pig in this!).

The social side of eventing is also very prevalent, with the brilliant idea of ladies day on Friday – a get together of epic proportions, Ladies Day promises once again to be fabulous! The perfect day out for a group of friends. Ladies Day attendees get entry to the Horse Trials, a complimentary tea or coffee, an exclusive drinks reception and a three course luncheon with glass of wine all hosted in the hospitality marquee with views over the dressage. Tickets also include a demonstration in the afternoon by guest speaker, florist Rachel Petheram. Tables and individual tickets for ladies day are still available via the website.

Last but by no means is least the massive array of trade stands. Take your credit cards as there are almost 100 shopping experiences on offer. A healthy mix of food, clothing, accessories, country and equine kit for all ages and budgets.

Laid out around the three main arenas there is a mix of food stalls for those with a penchant for savoury or sweet edibles. Forget packing a picnic and check out Gourmet Brownies www.gourmetbrownie.co.uk , speciality pork pies from The Crusty Pie Shop www.crustypie.co.uk/shop and for something very different and almost indulgent duck fat roast potatoes with a choice of toppings (an alternative Sunday lunch?). Expect the usual boutique coffee vans and eateries but do check out The Routemaster Bus Bar www.busbarcompany.com for a lunchtime tipple on their upstairs drinking deck. With bright weather forecast this could be the place to meet and greet.

For those wanting to indulge on equine or country clothing there is great representation from a range of large and smaller traders. Coltsfoot Equestrian www.coltsfootequestrian.org , sponsor of Chester da floying oirishman one of EWW’s very own bloggers, will be in attendance and always have a wide selection of essentials and new products to buy. The EWW team will be checking out the super-hot brand Fairfax and Favor www.fairfaxandfavor.com . The boys at Fairfax HQ are enthusiastic about trading at the event. “Belton is our first Horse Trials of the year which we always look forward to with great excitement. It’s close to our HQ, and both the turnout and the standard of competitors are always high”. With the Regina boot being on many event riders ‘must have’ lists for trot up and social clothing we are sure that this brand will grow in popularity during 2015. Keep an eye out on the EWW fashion pages ‘The Trot Up’ for more news about this young British brand.

Noble outfitters www.nobleoutfitters.co.uk are a new brand to the UK (from the US) and we will be checking out some of their no fuss riding basics and breeches at affordable prices. One label to tick the everyday but classy kit list.

If you are looking for something completely leftfield why not wobble off your lunch at Proven Products. www.prostepmini.com . Supplying Pro Step mini vibration exercise machines for core stability there is no excuse not to have buns of steel or Mike Jackson’s abs! For those of you who like tech and would love to work on refining your position finish off at Your 4 Legs. Stef Watts carries out a range of services including equine gait and rider analysis and equine massage. www.your4legs.co.uk

Tickets for the event are available in advance from the Belton International Horse Trials Website or on the gate, priced from £5. Discount tickets offers are still available online and can be printed at home via an instant tickets service so it isn’t too late to rock up and enjoy. www.bede.ticketsrv.co.uk

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