The South-East’s popular international showground attracts big names for its summer season prior to a multi-million pound redevelopment

The Horse Show (CSI-A), the international show jumping event at Great Leighs (Essex County Showground) from 16-18 August has secured a major sponsorship deal with Thomson Directories.

Thomson Directories will be principal backer of the international show jumping classeson Saturday (17 August), including the day’s feature class, the £6,000 Thomson Local Classic.

The Horse Show was Britain’s first new outdoor show jumping event in the UK in 40 years when launched by showground owner John Holmes in 2000.

Many top riders, including John, Michael and Robert Whitaker, Tim Stockdale, Richard and James Davenport, Damian Charles, John Renwick and, in his comeback season, Nick Skelton, have already entered this year’s show.

It will bethe last event held at the showground prior to its £25 million redevelopment as a racecourse, leisure and exhibition venue. The traditional grass show jumping arenas will make way for a large, all-weather apron within the racetrack which will host up to six major equestrian events a year, including the show jumping classes at a new-look Essex County Show in 2003.

Chrissy Fice, marketing operations manager for Thomson Directories said: “We are delighted to be entering into this agreement with Great Leighs, as it provides us with an excellent opportunity to support businesses in the local community, while also ensuring that our brand is promoted at this prestigious event”.

  • Great Leighs hosts a second show jumping event, the Essex International, from 14-16 July. This show is part of the British Show Jumping Association’s Golden Jubilee Tour series, in honour of its patron, the Queen.
  • Young horses classes have been added to the international schedule. Each day there will be a class for six- and seven-year-olds, each with a prize fund of £1,500, generously sponsored by Fordyce Curry.

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