Rock star wife enjoys Arab spending spree

  • Shirley Watts, wife of the Rolling Stone’s drummer Charlie, has bought three more Polish Arab mares for her stud in Devon

    Arab horse breeder Shirley Watts enjoyed a successful buying trip when she visited the Pride of Poland Arab horse auction in the Polish town of Janov Podlaski.

    Shirley, who has been married to the drummer of the Rolling Stones, for more than 35 years, owns Halsdon Arabians and lives at the couple’s 16th century stud in Devon.

    A prolific breeder and exhibitor of Arabs, Shirley currently owns around 200 horses. Most of them, including seven stallions, are kept on her 600-acre stud, although the couple also has some racing Arabs in training in Poland.

    The heart of the Halsdon Stud’s collection lies in the 27 Polish-bred mares, many of which carry the bloodlines of the three-quarter Egyptian stallion Palas from whom comes the type and quality which typifies the Halsdon brood mare herd.

    Shirley says that she originally travelled to Poland intending only to buy one mare, but returned with three.

    “I went looking for a wife for my black stallion Simeon Sadik,” said Shirley “but ended up buying three, so now he has his own harem!

    “Charlie is away working in Canada at the moment, so he doesn’t know I have bought them.”

    The mares, two black and one dark bay, will arrive in the UK within the next three weeks and will immediately go into quarantine at the stud.

    Shirley is a frequent visitor to the Polish Arab horse sales. In 1998 she paid 200,000 US dollars for the top priced mare, Emilda and for the past two years has bought mares for more than 100,000 US dollars each.

    Charlie first got Shirley interested in Arab horses more than 30 years ago.

    “He showed me a photograph of an Arab stallion and fell in love,” explained Shirley. “Charliebought me my first Arab which was a part-bred, and it spiralled from there.”

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