It was a busy time at the Royal Norfolk Show, but we were delighted when rehomed Redwings ponies came home with an impressive haul of rosettes!
Redwings Elsa, a 13.3hh eight-year-old cob, was only called up to attend on the morning of the classes (Thursday 29th June) after Redwings Tasha, who had been due to join us, was a little under-the-weather and not able to attend. Despite this, Elsa triumphed in the ring, winning the In-hand Rescue class with her handler Megan Spandler from our rehoming team, and we were delighted when she was placed as Champion overall!
Elsa came to Redwings in 2019, but her inspirational rescue story started in 2016 when she was first rescued by the RSPCA, abandoned and with horrendous injuries to her back legs. She was just nine months old. She had huge, infected abrasions across her hindquarters which were so deep they were exposing her muscles and would have been causing her excruciating pain.
Thanks to the care she received from the RSPCA, Elsa made a full recovery. The RSPCA then reached out to Redwings, with our speciality in sanctuary care, to secure her a long-term home after she had been through such a horrific ordeal.
Through her time at Redwings, Elsa stood out as a perfect candidate for our Guardianship rehoming programme and attended the Royal Norfolk Show not just to compete in the ring, but to be part of the Rescue Village, promoting the work of equine welfare charities and their rehoming programmes. It is hoped that she will soon be available to rehome as an unbacked project for an experienced equestrian who could take on her training to become a ridden pony.
Reserve Champion went to Redwings Honey and her 12-year-old Guardian Elli-May Baskerville, after they won the Ridden Veteran Rescue class, qualifying them for the Championship.
Honey has been living with the Baskerville family since 2018. The 12.2hh, 17-year-old Welsh cross was rescued in 2011, as one of 23 horses who came to Redwings from squalid conditions at a farm in Northern Ireland. Many of the group were underweight, with parasitic burdens and suffering from the infectious disease strangles. Honey was also pregnant, and later gave birth to a healthy colt foal.
Rachael Baskerville, Honey’s Guardian and Elli-May’s mum, said: “Honey is such a special pony to us, and Elli-May has had showing her at the Royal Norfolk Show on her horsey bucket-list! They have achieved so much together, but most importantly Honey is absolutely Elli-May’s best friend. Words will never be enough to express how much we all love her, and the rosettes are the icing on the cake!”
Also doing a fine job of representing us in the ring were Redwings Edward and his Guardian Claire Davenport, who placed second in the In-hand Rescue class and Redwings Budgie and Dean Hannington, who had also been representing the charity in the Rescue Village, who placed fifth.
Redwings CEO, Lynn Cutress said: “We could not be prouder of our Redwings ponies and their rosettes. Champion Elsa did us especially proud after she stepped in at such short notice, and it is real credit to the rehoming team for the work they do in their training that both her and Budgie, who is only four years old, flourished in such a busy and prestigious show environment.
“To see Honey and her Guardian family triumph is also especially heartwarming. Her group’s rescue was a complex case for Redwings, and even saw our vets providing key testimony to ensure their owners were prosecuted for their neglect, so we’re delighted that she has found such a lovely home, and continues to be loved and cherished by her new family.”