Weekly News 15 April

Congratulations to Wellow Group for their non-Royal visit on Tuesday! Despite the (completely understandable) absence of The Princess Royal, the group nevertheless put on a fantastic event for the local Lieutenancy and selected guests. A timely reminder that things will get better and there are still good times to be had.

Remembering The Duke Of Edinburgh

RDA Chief Executive, Ed Bracher has sent a message of condolence on behalf of RDA to The Palace following the death of The Duke of Edinburgh. Prince Philip was known to many within RDA, especially among our driving community, so I’m sure some groups will be planning to mark his passing in their own way.

With that in mind, there are two announcements below about how to pay your respects if you wish, one from British Equestrian and then from the organisers of Windsor Horse Show.  

Guidance from British Equestrian

The Royal Ceremonial Funeral of His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh will be held on 17 April at 15.00 in St. George’s Chapel, Windsor, and British Equestrian is aware that a large number in the equestrian community will wish to pay their respects. With a busy weekend of competition ahead and many planning to enjoy  activities with their horses, we wanted to offer guidance on paying respects.

Many sporting fixtures, racing included, are making arrangements for a period of respect during the funeral service of The Duke of Edinburgh between 14.45 and 16.15 on Saturday. We leave it to the organiser’s discretion on whether to facilitate any such break in their own schedule. Organisers may also wish to consider allowing/requesting riders to wear black armbands on Saturday.

However, we would request that all events/venues make provision in their timetable to observe the national one minute silence at 15.00 with a halt in any activity, ensuring enough time for action to stop sufficiently to allow a full minute of reflection and respect.

Should venues wish to pay their respects by half-masting flags, please follow the guidance issued by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

The Cabinet Office has also issued guidance on the Period of National Mourning.


Organisers of Windsor Horse Show: The Horse World Remembers
The Horse World Remembers – an Equestrian Tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh will be coordinated by Royal Windsor Horse Show, of which he was an active President for 30 years. During a time when we may not be able to pay tribute in person, The Horse World Remembers will provide a way to celebrate and commemorate the life of a remarkable man – available to all online who wish to pay their respects.

At the heart of The Horse World Remembers is an online Book of Condolence, which will form the platform for our collective memories and tributes. Messages from organisations and individuals, professionals and amateurs alike are all welcome. Please feel free to write whatever comes to your mind. It could be personal, it could be reflective, it could be joyous or it could be a message to His Royal Highness to thank him for his contribution to the horse world. Your message could be anonymous or not, it is up to you – photographs, stories, condolences and thoughts are all welcome. We also encourage you to share this opportunity with your society members and friends in the equestrian community.  The Book of Condolence can be found at www.horseworldremembers.com

We will also be sharing stories across social media (Instagram, Twitter and Facebook) using #HorseWorldRemembers.

During the 2021 Royal Windsor Horse Show (1st to 4th July) the entries to the Book of Condolence will be on display making up a Puissance Wall which will be wrapped in the contributions. The Wall will become a central feature for people to remember The Duke of Edinburgh, and his amazing equestrian achievements. The entries will also be bound into a book for presentation to Her Majesty The Queen.

The online Book of Condolence will stay active for four weeks.

Advice and guidance from National Office

Please remember to refer to MyRDA for the latest local guidance about returning to RDA activities. We will now only be issuing specific guidance in these weekly emails if there is a tightening of restrictions or a significant change that needs addressing.

Do also remind your volunteers about the difference between our main website www.rda.org.uk (our public-facing website) and www.MyRDA.org.uk (for volunteer support, where all the COVID information lives). We’ve had a few frustrated volunteers unable to find the restart information as they are looking at the wrong website.

30-minute webinar

Tonight, 7pm, (just for groups and RDA UK volunteers in Scotland): The Community & Third Sector Recovery Programme

The Community & Third Sector Recovery Programme aims to support charities, community groups, social enterprises and voluntary organisations in Scotland that are supporting people and communities through the shift from lockdown to recovery. The programme is now open and grants of up to £75,000 are available.  To access  funding your organisation must operate primarily in Scotland. This  webinar is specifically for RDA groups in Scotland and will be chaired by Lynda Whittaker, RDA Trustee  who has experience of the programme. Joined by groups whom have applied to the programme this is an opportunity to find out more about the fund and how you can access the funding.

Register at https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_WPKb5jr3RN-d50Cs8RiHmA


Next week: 22 April, Physiotherapy advice

Advice on restarting participants. Register at: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_kjcf1rn5Q1CtB_gyKGNkUQ


Horses for Health Relay to benefit RDA

We are one of seven equine charities benefiting from a fundraising event this summer called ‘The Great Horses for Health Relay’. The event is already gaining huge interest and registrations among the equine community. I know some RDA people are already planning to take part, and it might be a fun thing for some groups to do with their participants too.

The organisers have divided the UK into 11 regions over 5 months with participants given two weeks to choose their own route in their local area, which is then recorded on the relay map.  The relay ‘baton’ will be passed onto the next participating region at a pre-arranged Covid-safe event. The relay starts in Yorkshire 2 May and is set to end in Cornwall around 2 October.

Find out more here: www.horses4health.co.uk/ or on their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/groups/1399636837047873

Sport England and #ClubMatters say thank you to volunteers

Sport England and #ClubMatters have joined forces to produce a short video presented by Baroness Tani Grey-Thompson acknowledging the vital role of volunteers throughout the pandemic. Lots of lovely messages and I spy RDA in there too! www.facebook.com/sportengland/videos/470423321068790


Equine Flu Awareness Week

This week is ‘Keeping Britain’s Horses Healthy Equine Flu Awareness Week’. We are taking this opportunity to say thank you to our partners MSD, Zoetis and Boehringer Ingelheim, who have supported our groups with free vaccinations for many years. This vaccine programme has enabled us to have 100% vaccine acceptance rate for horses competing at our National Championships during the Equine Flu outbreak in 2019. It also allows our groups to be able to operate out of some of the larger equestrian centres where either annual or six monthly vaccination is required.

You can find out more about Equine Flu Awareness Week on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/KeepingHorsesHealthy

Page Last Updated: April 28, 2021