It’s not what you expect to see in the car park of a hotel in Shropshire.
Farriers from across the world pitched up with horses and equipment at Buckatree Hall Hotel in Wellington to compete for a variety of titles.
The Farriers Foundation charity, which was set up by Staffordshire Farriers to help farriers in times of injury or illness, held it’s annual perpetual trophy and winter ball at the historic hotel on Saturday.
The experts in horses hoof care travelled from as far afield as America, Germany, Norway, Ayrshire, Sussex, Kent and Wales, with 22 people competing during the day and 114 attending the evening.
They raised more than £5,500 for the charity and organiser Sara Nunn said it was a huge success.
She said: “It was a wonderful day of competition and evening celebration.
“Everyone enjoyed themselves,it is always a great occasion coming together for a good cause.
“Last year was our inaugural event and it went so well we decided to come back to Buckatree Hall, once again the hospitality was great.”
Buckatree Hall Hotel, at the foot of the Wrekin, is owned by seven time world champion farrier and trustee of the Farriers Foundation Grant Moon and his family.
Mr Moon said: “I am extremely honoured to be part of this event and delighted that the Buckatree can contribute to their success.
“Last year was very special, the charity was registered in 2014 and the event was held for the first time in 2015 – I didn’t think we could top it but this year has been even better.
“The addition of the competition in the car park was a great pull for crowds and everyone seemed to enjoy it, our loyal regular customers found it extremely interesting and I am grateful for their support as well.
“It is an excellent addition to our industry and I hope it will continue for many years to come.”
The Farriers Foundation is a dedicated, independent charity run by farriers raising funds to support, rehabilitate, educate and prevent for farriers and retired farriers and their families.
The initial inspiration and focus of the foundation was Richard Ellis, who sadly lost his fight with cancer in 2014, but had been mentor and tremendous inspiration within the industry.
Jon Nunn (Associate of the Worshipful Company of Farriers, AWCF), chairman of the trustees of the Farriers Foundation, set up the charity and this year handmade the trophy for the champion of the Farriers Foundation Challenge.
Competition winners from the event at Buckatree Hall Hotel included champion Matt Randles, the Apprentice Champion was Alex Livingston, Lifetime Achievement Award went to David Gulley (Fellow of the Worshipful Company of Farriers, FWCF), John Hayes (AWCF) was named Outstanding Educator and Outstanding Achievement of 2015 went to Sarah-Mary Brown (FWCF).
The fundraising auction included many impromptu lots donated by farriers, many handmade.
Mrs Nunn added: “Last year we raised £12,000 for the charity but that was because of the particular lots in the auction – the largest contribution was £4,000 for a bark of a teek tree decorated with horse shoes made by the last seven world champion farriers.
“Although we didn’t reach that sum again this year we always knew we wouldn’t and we’re really pleased with how much we have raised.
“It will go a long way towards helping farriers in need.”