Red weather warning: more shows take action, including cancellations and postponements

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  • As temperatures soar and parts of England prepare for highs of up to 40C tomorrow, a number of competitions have been cancelled or postponed.

    Last week, for the first time ever, the Met Office issued a red “exceptional heat” warning for today (18 July) and tomorrow (19 July) for parts of central, northern, eastern and southeastern England. An amber warning is in place for Cornwall, west Wales and parts of southern Scotland.

    Yesterday British Eventing (BE) announced that competition at Dauntsey Park in Wiltshire tomorrow has been abandoned owing to the weather warning and Government advice. The second day of competition on Wednesday (20 July) – when temperatures are forecast to be cooler – remains unaffected.

    Classes that had been due to run on Tuesday – including the BE90 and BE100 – will now take place on Thursday after organisers “moved heaven and earth” to reschedule.

    “To ensure the best possible going, watering has begun on the cross-country and showjumping and the aggravator will be used on the dressage and other areas that require it,” said a BE spokesman yesterday.

    A number of British Showjumping competitions scheduled for tomorrow have also been cancelled. Venues that have so far announced they will not run are Chard Equestrian in Somerset, Speetley Equestrian in Derbyshire, Onley Grounds Equestrian in Warwickshire, and Codham Park Equestrian Centre in Essex.

    British Dressage scheduled to take place today at Witham Villa, Leicester, and tomorrow at Manor Grange, West Yorkshire, and Arena UK in Lincolnshire, is cancelled. The show at Felbridge Showground on Tuesday has been rescheduled to Thursday (21  July). Last week it was announced that the BD Petplan equine Area Festival at Wellington Riding tomorrow would be rescheduled to Friday (22 July).

    In racing, meetings at Beverley and Windsor today, and tomorrow’s fixtures at Chelmsford City, Southwell, and Wolverhampton have been abandoned.

    The Festival of Hunting

    The Peterborough Royal Foxhound Show and the Festival of Hunting at the East of England Showground is going ahead on Wednesday and organisers have said a “comprehensive” animal welfare policy is in place, with vets on site.

    “There will be ample water available with access to shade in and around the hound rings and the collecting ring for the inter-hunt relay,” the organisers said.

    “In consultation with the chief veterinary officer and chief medical officer, the organisers of the event will be prepared to modify any classes they see fit if the weather conditions on the day dictate that there would otherwise be an unacceptable level of risk to the welfare of the animals exhibiting, or their handlers.”

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