Christmas and the London International Horse Show, Olympia, are synonymous — and not just because both occur in December. Many of those forward to contest the LeMieux British Show Pony Society mountain and moorland supreme championship yesterday (Monday, 18 December) dressed their pony’s stable as impeccably as they did their charges.
Horse & Hound’s showing editor Aimi Clark picks out some of the festive highlights in the gallery below:
Don’t miss the full Olympia report in this week’s issue of Horse & Hound, on sale Thursday 21 December.
1, Windy’s Christmas grotto
It was a tough decision, but we liked this stable’s festive theme the best. A Christmas tree, star, paper chains, lights and oodles of tinsel — what’s not to like? Well done to Murthwaite Windrush’s rider Steph Peto and owner Jenny Crane.
2, Winter Wonderland
There is a lot to like about this tastefully decorated stable too. Housing Tayla Lewis’ Nipna Flora, H&H loved the baubles showing the Dales pony’s name, as well as the wintery scene on the outside and Santa and his reindeer flying across the inside in a starry night scene.
3, Festive igloo
A significant amount of wrapping paper went into the making of this stable, expertly crafted by Shanbo Rory’s owner and rider Sophie James. The Christmas trees sitting outside, plus the tinsel, stockings, beads and the unicorn wreath are perfect finishing touches.
4, White Christmas
A beautifully crafted winter wonderland — complete with snowflakes and ice skating boots — was constructed to house Christina Gough’s Fell stallion Lunesdale Dixie.
5, Red for Rocket
Another perfectly wrapped Christmas stable — we wonder how long Jo Bates’ Robert Fallon-owned Connemara Cashelbay Rocket spent trying to reach the carrots in the stocking?
6, Santa’s coming
There really is a Shetland pony in there! A beautifully colour-coordinated festive stable for Emily Stobbart’s Lotuspoint Cassisus both on the inside and the outside.
7, Posing for presents
Sandra Burton’s Connemara Banks Timber expertly poses for the camera — we particularly loved the box of presents outside his stable.
8, Frosty The Snowman
Fitting décor for a real-life snowman — although Margaret Sumner’s Shetland Pony Briar Snowman, the ride of Grace Litherland, is too small to see over the door! We like the ‘cold’ blue and white colour scheme — and the nod to Frosty The Snowman.
9, Rustic Rudolph
Less colour but just as eye-catching a design for the stable of Elizabeth Houghton’s Dartmoor Langworthy Swift Ghost, complete with fairy lights and a snow-coloured wreath.
10, Santa galore!
A stable wrapped in a Santa Claus montage enclosed Victoria Edwards-Sonnex’s Dales pony Morlandsdale Mac.