New lease of life for show centre Manor Farm

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East Anglian riders have welcomed the revival of the much-missed show centre Manor Farm. Its first British Showjumping (BS) show under new ownership earlier this month welcomed “lorry after lorry load” of competitors.

Local riders described the loss of Manor Farm, near Huntingdon, Cambs, as “terrible news” when it closed last October.

But the centre was bought by businessman Mick George, who told H&H he invested a “substantial amount of money” in the venue, before reopening as Houghton Hall Equestrian Centre.

The indoor arena and car park have been extended, new stables built and a “big clean up” has taken place, he added.

Health inspectors successfully prosecuted the centre’s previous owner for hygiene offences.

Houghton Hall’s first competitive event was a junior BS show on 6 October.
Charlotte Kane, a joint-director of the centre, said: “There were 48 people in the first class. We just couldn’t believe it.

“We want our centre to lead the way. We don’t just do one sport, we’re multi-disciplined and have things on for everyone,” she added.

The centre is running unaffiliated dressage and showjumping classes and has applied to hold British Dressage competitions.

Leanne Ehren, who has been attending clinics at Houghton Hall, told H&H it had been “totally transformed”.

“It means there is another much-needed show centre in the area,” she added.

This news story was first published in the current issue of H&H (18 October 2012)