Five people have had their outstanding contribution to the equestrian world recognised in theNew Year’s Honours list and have received MBEs.

The only competitive rider honoured is veteran flat jockey George Duffield, 56, whose long partnership with trainer Sir Mark Prescott saw many victories including the 1997 Cambridgeshire on Pasternak. He also rode the great Giant’s Causeway in an epic Coral Eclipse Stakes in July the following year.

Muriel Colquhoun, organiser of Scotland’s Houston House horse trials, also received the MBE. Muriel has been “Mrs Fix it” for the Scottish equestrian industry for a number of years, securing funding for riders and training from SportScotland and acting as secretary of the Scottish Equestrian Association.

Margaret (Peggy) Maxwell’s MBE recognises her 23 years on the committee of Windsor International Horse Trials – 12 of which were as president. She is also renowned for her witty dressage commentaries, pioneered in 1987 to encourage and inform spectators at horse trials.

Yvonne Nelson is honoured as one of the founders of the Fortune Centre for Riding Therapy in Dorset, which uses horses to teach social and life skills to young people. Yvonne, a BHSI, was chief instructor at Porlock Vale Equestrian Centre before devoting herself to the 31 youngsters who each spend two years at the Fortune Centre.

Jean Scott-Mitchell’s commitment to equestrian sport has also been recognised. Jean is event director of Punchestown and Necarne Castle International horse trials and a director of the Equestrian Federation of Ireland. She is also a director of Dressage and Eventing Ireland. Last year, she was president of the ground jury at the four-star Rolex event in Kentucky, Badminton and the World Equestrian Games in Jerez.

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