Welcome to World of Horses, the website designed to cater for the needs of all horsey people. Whether you are an owner or a rider, novice or experienced, a happy hacker or a professional or simply a horse lover, www.worldof-horses is the place to be. As well as making an interesting read for any horse enthusiast, this website offers a comprehensive directory of contacts and listings for everything equestrian related. An invaluable tool for those seeking blacksmiths, horse vets, tack shops and horse equipment, this site also gives an insight into each of the huge range of horse sports that are enjoyed by many, and is regularly updated to provide information on the latest equestrian news and events.
Worshipped by every culture for thousands of years, the horse has always been held in high regard by people all over the world. His place in society is summed up to perfection by Ronald Duncan in his poem entitled, “The Horse”:
Where in this wide world can man find nobility without pride,
Friendship without envy,
Or beauty without vanity?
Here, where grace is served with muscle
And strength by gentleness confined
He serves without servility; he has fought without enmity.
There is nothing so powerful, nothing less violent.
There is nothing so quick, nothing more patient.
England's past has been borne on his back.
All our history is in his industry.
We are his heirs, he our inheritance.
Indeed, if it is the dog that is man’s best friend, then surely the horse is man’s best ally. Horses have lived and died beside us for 6000 years, and world history would present itself as a very different picture had the horse not lain hoof on the earth’s soil. As Duncan acknowledges in his poem, our equine friends display a remarkable range of attributes and qualities that have made them indispensable to mankind. Thanks to his speed, bravery and fierce loyalty, the horse has proved to be a mighty warrior on the battlefield, thus helping to create world history. In later years, this role was to be superseded by one in agriculture; the strength, power and kind nature of the horse made him ideal for cultivating the land, pulling heavy loads to markets and to the docks, and ultimately ensured that farmers were able to depend on the horse for their livelihood, just as soldiers had depended on him for their lives.
In more recent times, the horse’s agility and trainability have seen him move into the world of sport, and competitive riding is not only a hugely popular pastime but also a serious profession. What is more, the vast range of different horse sports existing today reflect the surge in popularity of equestrian activities, and the key disciplines are receiving far greater media coverage thanks to the emergence of equine ‘celebrities’ such as the awesome Moorlands Totillas and the late superstars Next Milton and Desert Orchid. Contrary to the opinion that riding is “simply the art of keeping a horse between you and the ground”, equestrian sports have now developed to the extent that each demands a very different set of skills from both its human and equine participants, and there is pretty much a horse sport for every shape and size of horse, pony and rider! Accordingly, here at World of Horses we have developed an exciting web page dedicated to each individual horse sport that takes place in the UK. This is because we understand the notion that a horse is not just a horse, of course, and the listings and contacts sought by the owner of a fit thoroughbred used for team chasing will be very different to those required by the proprietor of a showing yard. Each of these pages also contains information on each of the horse sports it features, so whether you want to learn more about show jumping, dressage, endurance riding, driving, cross country, mounted games, racing, point-to-point, polo or even the increasingly popular activities of trec, western riding and vaulting, there is something for everyone here. We even have sections on the relatively new horse sports of jump cross, polo-crosse and horseball, so if you’re feeling incredibly fit and energetic why not explore these exciting new concepts in the world of equestrian sports!
Of course, there will be plenty among you that keep horses just for hacking or companionship only. There is no denying that horses promote a sense of freedom and thus are as good for the mind as hunting is for the adrenalin. Indeed, in the words of Winston Churchill, “There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man”. So as summer sizzles away and the dark nights of winter begin to draw in, make sure that you are fully prepared and equipped to care for the needs of the equine friend that provides you with such companionship and pleasure. Horse owners and loaners all over the country are fast turning their thoughts to the necessities of winter bedding, feed and hay, not to mention new rugs, clipping and worming, and with the wide range of horse equipment now available it is worth browsing our list of tack shops as you are sure to find whatever you need whether you be turning away your show pony or getting your hunter fit for the season ahead!
Finally, once you have stepped back to admire your beast all tucked up in his new pyjamas, standing on a fresh bed of shavings, and happily munching away at that hideously expensive new feed balancer that is guaranteed to make him the shiniest horse on the yard, spare a thought for the other partner in your life...you know, the one left at home to cook the dinner whilst you tend to the horse! Perhaps it’s time to start contemplating which wonderful gift you could buy him or her for Christmas – something really special that will demonstrate your appreciation of their understanding over the time and commitment that your four hoofed friend demands. Once again, World of Horses could really come to the rescue – with a horse photography section also within the site, you can easily locate a photographer to capture the perfect image of Cracker all wrapped up in the new rug which finally drained the joint bank account...won’t the partner be pleased!!