Synonymous with Horse of the Year Show (HOYS), the Ode to the Horse poem was written by Ronald Duncan in 1954. The piece was produced for HOYS’ organiser, Mike Ansell, to celebrate and give thanks to all horses for their part in our history, our everyday lives and our enjoyment.

This moving poem is read out at the end of every Horse of the Year Show to close the show. It has found a very special place in the heart of riders and spectators alike, and is now as embedded in UK equestrian culture as the Black Beauty theme tune.

In this video version, produced by HOYS organisers Grandstand Media ahead of the 2013 show, Brian Blessed voices the stirring lines.

Ode to the Horse video

The making of Ode to the Horse video