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Former H&H deputy news editor

New equestrian event for 2012 at London’s ExCel centre

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An exhibition team aims to succeed where others have failed by adding a new equestrian event to the UK calendar.

Equidae Ltd, whose staff have run the Ideal Home Show and National Wedding Show, plans to slot Horse World Live 2012 into the lucrative pre-Christmas period.

It is scheduled for 16-18 November at the ExCel centre in London’s Docklands. And show director Karena Cooper believes they have found a gap in the market.

“We are not running competition classes, so we are not competing with Olympia. There is no showing, so we’re not competing with HOYS.

“The closest comparison is Your Horse Live, but we are in a different part of the country.”

Equidae’s research indicates that 60% of exhibition attendees come from within 20 miles of a venue and there is no other comparable show in the London area.

And Ms Cooper believes the transport routes to ExCel mean they can extend this reach to 60 miles.

The Horse World Live 2012 organisers hope to sell 30,000 tickets to their show.

It will boast “fantastic shopping”, information about stallions, feeding, bitting and shoeing experts, masterclasses from as yet unnamed top riders and evening gala performances from display teams.

However, several new horse shows have failed lately in what is a near-saturated market.

The last equestrian fixture to run at ExCel, Equus – The Horse Event, foundered in 2004 after three years.

A relaunch was abandoned in the face of slow ticket sales.

More recently, Horse of the Year Show’s sister event – the loss-making British Open, which was launched in 2003, was last held in 2010.

And the Royal Show’s successor, the Royal Festival of the Horse in Warwickshire, suffered miniscule attendance in 2010 and was axed.

Claire Williams of the British Equestrian Trade Association (BETA) said: “Many have tried to run a London show, but [apart from Olympia] none has been truly successful.

“Our members welcome the opportunity to trade in a new location and are willing to give the new show a go – but the proof will be in the longevity of the event.”

For further information, go to www.horseworldlive.com

This news story was first published in the current issue of H&H (26 January 2012)

Originally published on horseandhound.co.uk