Martin’s Blog 30th March

Devastating news to start today’s blog with as we heard the awful news yesterday that our friend Paul Townend, who has been an owner here, had lost his life to this dreadful disease. Our thoughts go out to his family and especially his wife Geraldine and we send them all our love. Paul was a generous and very popular man, loved life and him & Geraldine were inseparable and absolutely lived life to the full so I hope that in time those wonderful memories will help heal some of their pain. As if any of us needed it, a stark wake up call to us all to take this awful disease even more seriously than we already were.

Not sure how to follow that news, a tough weekend for so many. We have to continue to look after our horses here, of course, and the vast majority are now out in the field starting their holidays. Obviously, with it being so bitterly cold over the last few days, they are well rugged up and also having additional hard feed and haylage too which we will be able to reduce soon I hope when the grass starts to come through in the next few weeks.

I do like them to continue to have a feed at least once a day throughout their holidays too as it helps keep everything working inside them. Whilst they have their feeds it gives me the chance to check them more thoroughly too for any cuts, bumps/lumps (hopefully not!). It’s very interesting to watch who becomes the boss of the field too and, also, who pals up with who – very much like school and I find it intriguing!

We are keeping a few horses in ticking over including some youngsters and they have had a canter today. Our 2 year olds with Martin Jones in Redmarley, who have been backed and ridden away, will return today or tomorrow and will go out into a new large field as they have learnt all we need them to for the moment. They can go out and digest what has just happened to them and will continue to grow too. It’s a long term plan and they are all in syndicates, with only a few shares unsold, and all their owners are thoroughly enjoying the journey so far. Martin Jones sends us regular videos which are forwarded on and, when they are home and turned out, we enjoy sending videos of them having fun in the field – enjoyable and time consuming in a good way!

Monday morning means looking at what is on the school timetable for our 12 and 9 year olds – teachers need a payrise when this is all over (as do so many of the vital lowly paid occupations that are keeping this whole show on the road). Glad I’ve handed the home schooling over to Belinda – I’ll happily teach them the manual outdoors things! Freddie (aka Mini-Ed) has lots of questions to ask me over the next few days as those of you on Twitter have replied to my request for questions. I hope you enjoy the answers…!