Months of turbulence within the Welsh Pony and Cob Society (WPCS) look to be coming to a head as the organisation gears itself up for its AGM on 6 March.
The society’s council recently held a series of disciplinary meetings into the behaviour of five council members following the suspension and subsequent dismissal of the WPCS secretary Evelyn Jones last summer. She was dismissed on charges of gross misconduct, and is taking the society to an employment tribunal.
Very little detail was released on the matter, which has highlighted disquiet within the society that, according to WPCS chairman of council Rosemary Philipson-Stow, had been building for 2 ½ years.
“In a society of nearly 8,000 there will always be opposing views,” she says.
All five council members admitted visiting solicitors acting for Evelyn Jones in contravention to a decision taken previously by the council in their presence, and were found to have “acted prejudicial to the interests of the society”.
In a statement, the council said it “deeply regrets” having to hold disciplinary meetings, but that Mr J G Berry, Mrs E French, Mr G W Jones, Mr I J R Lloyd and Mr T J Roberts had been warned about future behaviour, and reprimanded.
Some members have become disillusioned with the way the WPCS is being run, and have accused leading figures of secretive behaviour and over-spending. Frustrations are being vented on unofficial Internet forums dedicated to the Welsh breeds.