Cleveland Bay Horses in Scotland



Its been a busy few days at Brackenbrae. We have been sorting out the sheep and sponging them before the tups go in so that we get the lambing concentrated into a short period. The tups go in on the 21st of November this year, a lot later than previously as we want to delay the lambing until we have grass in the spring so that the ewes and lambs can go out to the grass as they lamb.

The horses had their dental checks this week, most were ok and coped with the new high tech dental equipment. Lizzie unfortunately has a bad tooth that needs removing so is booked into the Royal Dick to have it removed on Thursday. Poor Lizzie, her first road trip in years and its to the vet school.

The weather was good at the weekend so Alison and I took Jack and Lockie for a ride while Jim walked Candy. Later we tried a saddle on the new girl Pearl and she treated it as normal so we will do a bit more with her and get her restarted under saddle.

Jack, Lockie and Candy

A paddle and a drink after the walk

Warlord tries out the new equipment

Lizzie gets lit up

Candy has a practise with the vet



A lovely sunny Sunday afternoon so we took Pearl out for her first walk around with Candy. Alison was going to ride Jack out but that would have left Lockie on his own so Lizzie got her first outing for a month. Every one seems to have enjoyed themselves.

Lizzie, Candy and Pearl



A new mare arrived this week. FOLDS PEARL is a 10 year old Cleveland Bay mare who we bought from Jo Firth down near Leeds. She is broken to ride and drive but has not done much for a little while so might need a bit of retraining. She has had three foals before joining us, all were to a New Forest stallion so we intend to breed her to a Cleveland stallion starting this spring, hopefully to get a pure filly (the holy grail). She is quite small for a Cleveland at only 15.1hh but should be small enough for Eva to ride as she gets vertigo on our big horses.

PEARL and CANDY making friends.

Time for a charge around the field

CANDY, LOCKIE, JACK and PEARL relax in the autumn sun.



It's been a busy few weeks with something on every weekend. Skysail and Rags flew the flag for Cleveland Bays at the Scottish Smallholders and Growers Festival at Lanark Mart, amongst other native breeds, meeting and greeting the public. Rags enjoys these events and Skysail doesn't mind as long as the hay holds out.

Skysail, Ragnald, Crystal and Lucent then had a successful outing to the Caledonian Showing Championships, doing well in the Brood mare and Foal classes on a pleasant autumn day. Lucent was a bit over-exuberant in her second ever show ring but behaved very well for the rest of the day. Skysail then came second the next day in the Rare and Mixed Breeds class, luckily moved indoors as the weather had completely changed. Helen came to handle Rags on the first day and spend a bit more time with him over the weekend.

Crystal and Jimmy, Rags and Helen, Lucent and John and Skysail and Alison



On Saturday we were part of a great day out organised by Falkirk Community Trust at the Helix Park as part of the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology. The RBST had a stand there and also six native breeds on display close to the main ring. We started the day with a photoshoot at the Kelpies themselves, did two parades in the ring and spent the rest of the day meeting the public. Although it was a lot of work and took months to organise, it was a fun day that everyone enjoyed. Even the weather was good.

Rags and Skysail with friends Nicola with Dee the miniature Shetland and Mary with Morrie the Eriskay

Just some of the horses and ponies taking part

Setting off for the morning parade



Sad news. Our darling Diamond died yesterday. She suffered with arthritis for some time and several times we have thought that we were going to have to make the difficult decision, only for our vets, Glasgow University vets and the farriers at various times coming up with ways to alleviate her symptoms. She spent a happy summer with the two latest foals, Rags and Lucent, looking after them in her usual "Granny Diamond" way, until suddenly being stricken again at the weekend. The vet came out first thing on Monday morning and she passed away very peacefully in the field.

We are devastated at losing her but very grateful that we could have her with us for as long as we have. She was a very special horse and she will be sorely missed by everyone.

Diamond, as ever, close to the wee ones

Our last photos of Diamond, taken just last week, on a pleasant summer evening