Hickstead is again set to be Britain’s only international dressage venue in 2001 with cancellation of the Stubbing Court fixture in Derbyshire.

Organisers Michael Rudge and his wife Frances, a former member of the British dressage team, cite considerable losses from both previous runnings of their CDI as the reason for their decision, which was “not taken lightly.”

The show costs £40,000 to stage, not including prize-money and despite strict economies, but income in 2000 was £36,000.

Mr Rudge contrasted the huge amounts spent by participants on horsepower and trainers with reliance on amateur organisations to stage the prestige shows. At least 13 other shows in Europe, including Goodwood, Etal and Addington in Britain, have ceased over 10 years.

“We feel that the days of such shows being run as we do are effectively over and in future, CDIs will have to be at have full-time professional venues, such as Hartpury (Glo); or College Equestrian Centre (Beds),” said Mr Rudge.David Holmes, chief executive of British Dressage, said: “Stubbing Court had gone from strength to strength in a short time and had provided an important focus for the north.

“This is, though, a sign of the times and follows a pattern across Europe,” he said.