Thwaites Brewery Bring Back Famed Shires for Deliveries

The world famous Shire horses of Thwaites Brewery
are back in harness.

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Thwaites, the oldest surviving brewery in Lancashire, England started brewing in 1807 and are celebrating over 200 glorious years.

The British brewery has decided to go back to using horses for deliveries within a few kilometres of its brewery.

The giant shire horses used for promotional work for the Daniel Thwaites brewery are back in harness in Blackburn and delivering ale to local pubs.

“We are always looking for ways to reduce our carbon footprint,” said the brewery’s transport operations manager Emma Green.

“It is great to see the Shires out again on the roads around town.”

Horses have not been used in the delivery of beer by the brewery for five years. The Thwaites horses have spent the last few years winning awards on the show circuit and doing promotional work.

Their public appearances will continue, but the company hope the shires will also be able to do their day jobs in between.

“We are aiming to get them out delivering within a mile or two’s radius of the stables when we can fit it in to their busy schedule,” says Emma.

“Deliveries by horse-drawn dray finished about five years ago when we moved distribution off-site.”

Thwaites ended horse deliveries in the 1920s when the company switched to motor transport. They were reintroduced in 1960’s.

It was a decision that has become a major landmark for the Brewery as the fame of the Thwaites Shires has spread throughout the country, embodying the traditional values that are such an important part of the company’s heritage.

The brewery has even more reasons to be proud of its horses. They swept the board at the recent National Shire Horse Spring Show, taking four titles and six trophies.

THE world-famous Thwaites Shire Horses emerged triumphant at another prestigious national competition….to win plaudits from none other than HRH The Duke of Edinburgh.

Prince Philip made the official presentation when the Thwaites’ team took the top honours at the Royal Windsor Horse Show.

The Thwaites horses, Classic, Royal, Daniel and Star, were voted outright winners in the heavy horse class at the event staged to honour the 100th anniversary of the British Food and Beverage Industry.

The success followed hot on the heels of Thwaites being named Champions of England at the National Shire Horse Spring Show in Peterborough – for the fourth time in six years.

After winning the four-horse Team Class, Thwaites’ stable stars went on to claim the overall Heavy Horse Turnout Championship.

The shire horses are kept very busy and are in great demand at shows, carnivals and promotional events all over the country. They can be seen regularly in the town centre delivering to pubs and exercising in addition to their busy schedule.

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Link: About the Thwaites Shire Horses

News Link:

Video: Thwaites Shire Horses

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Bo Derek Appointed to Calif. Horse Racing Board

 

Bo Derek, animal rights activist

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California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has named animal lover Bo Derek to the seven-member California Horse Racing Board, which oversees all of the state’s racing and betting action.

The 1980s-era movie star attended her first meeting at Del Mar Racetrack, near San Diego. The post, which was confirmed by the state Senate, pays $100 per day, maybe enough for extra oats for her own stable full of Iberian horses.

Derek, who has been lobbying Congress for the past five years to ban the slaughter of wild horses, could hardly have found a more suitable role.

In addition to being a spokeswoman for the Animal Welfare Institute, in 2002 she penned the memoir Riding Lessons: Everything That Matters in Life I Learned from Horses.

Bo Derek is the founder of her own line of fine pet-care products, Bless the Beasts.

Bo Derek has been active in many capacities for the protection of animals. In addition to her work on the Galapagos Conservancy, she serves on a number of boards, including WildAid, which is trying to stop the illegal wildlife trade.

Bo Derek was also appointed Special Envoy of the Secretary of State for Wildlife Trafficking.

She has taken up the cause of stopping the slaughter of horses in the United States for food export to Europe and testified before Congress with the National Horse Protection Coalition.

With her commitment to animal rights and here love of horses, Bo Derek is well chosen to serve as a watchdog for the much needed protection of horses at the race tracks.

 

Save Gas ~ Ride A Horse! *Check Out Honest John’s New And Used Horses*

Thelwell Pony

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Alright folks, step right up!

I can save you money on gas!

You don’t want to pay $4.69 for gas, no problem.

I have the perfect vehicle for you. Needs no gas, no oil, or even a battery, just a little grass and water will do these animals fine.

Now everyone has different needs, so choose from the following models:

Trail Horse
Your average run around town animal. Has the energy to get where you are going, the brain to find the best way to go, big enough to carry the normal sized American.

The Arabian
Perfect for those who travel long distances in a day and try to multi task while driving. Although the Arabian may not go to your home or office without specific instruction, it WILL go somewhere.

The Draft
Calling all soccer moms. This big guy can carry the whole team, their gear and snacks. Just like the big machines, this guy will require more fuel, and his shoes will be more expensive than the compact model.

The Western Pleasure
The right car for the high end white collar workers. This animal works harder and requires more special knowledge so only the best can figure this out. Be sure to take your cell phone. You won’t be stuck in traffic, you just won’t be getting anywhere fast.

The Parelli
Salesmen, stay at home moms, and high school kids will all enjoy this dream. You can load him down with flapping Wal-mart bags, ask him to walk in places a horse won’t fit, and you can dance with him as you listen to the latest tunes.

The Ranch
The most dependable animal available. He will go where ever you ask him to, at whatever speed is appropriate. You can tie him to the stop sign and he will be there when you get back. Best of all, this model has been specially engineered to be able to go without water for days and stay fat and slick by eating sagebrush and dead prairie grass.

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Of course all models are available in base colors (sorrel, bay, black) Special order colors are available (dun, gray, palomino) and for an additional fee, custom paint jobs are also available (overo, tobiano, blanket, leopard).

No horse is sold with a warranty, however maintenance plans are available in the event brakes, steering, or accelerator fail.

~~~

Now’s your chance!  Shop early!
Gas prices are going up!

Hurry while supplies last!

Spring Scene: Adorable In Any Color

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Published in: on June 15, 2008 at 6:01 am  Comments (2)  
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Horses Help Farmers Cut Fuel Costs

 

Jeff Johns furrows another row with agricultural relic,
a horse-drawn steel plow

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Jeff Johns of Lonesome Valley Farms in Pennsylvania had the horses. He had land that needed to be plowed. And he had worries that rising fuel costs would eat into his already thin profit margin.

So he’s doing what farmers did long before the tractor came along — he’s using his two draft horses to power a plow.

And he’s loving every minute of it.

Johns said, “It’s something about getting behind that team of horses that slows life down to the way it ought to be.”

Johns is joining the ranks of a growing number of farmers who are cutting fuel costs by going back in time.

In 1900, farmers relied completely on animal power. There were 21.6 million work animals used on American farms then, according to a 2005 report by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service.

With mechanization came change. By 1960, the last year the government kept statistics, only 3 million horses and mules were being used for farm work. The rest had been replaced by 4.7 million tractors used at that time.

However, due to the rising cost of fuel, work animals are making a comeback.

Johns bought a ride-on plow from an Amish equipment dealer over the winter with the idea that he was going to use his two male draft horses — Arley and Star — to plow.

He’s already used draft horses for years for hayrides and carriage rides.

“We figured we’d plow as much as we can with the horses this spring because that’s less fuel we have to pay for,” Johns said.

“Every furrow I can turn with those horses helps,” he said.

The Amish have always had a special relationship between their horses and the cultivation of the earth.

 Another Pennsylvania farmer, Burt Mulhollem, says using horses just makes sense.

“If I was to go out and work my tractor hard all day long, it would cost me $100, and I don’t have it,” Mulhollem said.

“I have the horses here so I may as well use them, and that don’t cost me nothing because I’ve got them here anyhow. And they give me manure back for the ground.”

Other farmers, particularly those who already have horses and mules, are expected to join him.

 

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Re-written from Pittsburgh Tribune

Spring Scene: I Can See You …

 

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Published in: on May 17, 2008 at 9:03 am  Comments (6)  

“The Horse” Featured Exhibit At The American Museum of Natural History

 

 

The American Museum of Natural History has announced a major new exhibition, The Horse, opening May 17, 2008 and remaining on view through January 4, 2009.

The Horse will examine the powerful and continuing relationship between horses and humans and explore the origins of the horse family, extending back more than 50 million years.

The exhibition will also examine early interactions between horses and humans that eventually led to horse domestication, and show how horses have, over time, changed warfare, trade, transportation, agriculture, sports, and many other facets of human life.

Museum President Ellen V. Futter states:  “The Horse exhibit will celebrate this magnificent animal while presenting one of the most fascinating stories in the history of life on Earth—the close and complex relationship between horses and humans.

The exhibition will show how the two species have influenced each other through the ages and explore the integral role the horse has played in the history of humanity and civilization.”

Seven life-size fiberglass horses, each over 6½ feet tall, were delivered to the American Museum of Natural History from the Saratoga County Arts Council in upstate New York for display in conjunction with the Museum’s upcoming exhibition .

The American Museum of Natural History is one of the world’s preeminent scientific, educational, and cultural institutions.

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Horse Exhibit: Museum of Natural History 

Earlier Post: Saratoga Fiberglass Horses

Spring Scene: Love My Blanky


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Right Out Of History: Wagon Trains Celebrate Minnesota 150th Anniversary

Minnesota Sesquicentennial Wagon Train

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The first weekend of May, Minnesota began the kickoff celebration of their historic past with the Sesquicentennial Wagon Train.

In all, about 85 people, on horseback and in covered wagons, buggies, surreys and one stagecoach are taking a week long,  100 mile journey, which will end Sunday at the State Capitol.

The arrival of the Sesquicentennial Wagon Train at the State Capitol is the linchpin for the kickoff for the state’s 150th birthday celebration.

The travelers started with two stuck wheels, a willful mule, a handful of skittish horses and a thrown rider. That was all before noon.

 A “green” horse three times took his driver off-road. A mule seeking his pasturemate took off, throwing his rider in the tall ditch grass.

When the group circled at noon, wagon master Olson was philosophical. I’m hoping for a better day tomorrow,” he said Monday. “The first day’s always an adjustment.”

Among the group were Pete Karpe who came from his farm in St. Francis, bringing his Percheron draft horses Trixie and Dixie, as well as his son, Mark, a capable, horse-mad 14-year-old.

Susan Longling, of Farmington, a confessed wagon-train addict, brought her Prince to pull the surrey she’d converted from her grandfather’s dairy (and bootleg liquor) cart.

As a strong sun broke through the crisp morning air, wagon master Jon Olson shouted, “Wagons, ho!” and the caravan rattled across the fairgrounds, onto the road.

Karpe had some trouble at the start, when the rig he drove became stuck in the mud. But once on the road, Dixie and Trixie easily caught pace with the group, their shod hooves ringing on the asphalt.

Townsfolk lined the streets of Cannon Falls, gathering before homes and shops to smile, wave and snap pictures.  A group of elementary kids held a hand-lettered sign: “Happy Birthday, Minnesota!”

This was “Americana” at its best!

The caravan continued, past bare fields and stands of cedar and elm.

Clay Christian the logistics man, said “We’ve got it easy”. “We’ve got county roads to go down, bridges to go across, no cliffs to take the wagons apart and lower ’em down.”

 The covered wagon is an icon of the American frontier. Still, in the 1850s, most arrived by water, via Mississippi steamboat.

From there, with the Big Woods of Wisconsin and the Mississippi behind them, settlers fanned out, often in wagons, all over the state.

The covered wagon was like the 19th century sport-utility vehicle, said Matt Anderson, a curator for the Minnesota Historical Society who specializes in transportation artifacts.

And contrary to the archetype, wagons weren’t meant for people. Usually, they were packed with luggage or cargo.

“Anybody who could walk, I’m sure did,” Anderson said.

Although the rigs at camp are more or less authentic, it’s hard to ignore some of the comforts of today: coolers, lawn chairs, RVs, digital cameras and the occasional chiming cell phone.

In spite of unexpected events along the way, when the ride was completed it was said that  “A bad day doing this is still better than a good day doing anything else.”

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Re-written from news sources:

Oldest Horse Charity In The World

Home of Rest For Horses
Britain ~ 1886 ~ Today

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In the 19th century, life for the majority of working horses on the streets of London was appalling.

On 10 May 1886 Miss Ann Lindo, inspired by the book ‘Black Beauty’ and determined to do something about it, set up a home of rest for horses, mules and donkeys at a farm at Sudbury, near Harrow, North-West London.

Fittingly its first resident was an overworked London cab horse.

Among the supporters of the new Society was HRH Prince Albert and before long the Duke of Portland, Master of the Royal Household, agreed to become president.

The role of horse as a working animal has changed radically over the past 120 years. No longer do we see cab horses, delivery drays, working pit ponies or the great Shire horses bending to the plough.

Pit Pony

The Home of Rest for Horses’ residents are today drawn from the ranks of those serving their masters in different ways – the mounted police force, the mounted Army regiments, the Royal Mews, Riding for the Disabled, the Horse Rangers Association – and very occasionally a retired race horse, a polo pony or just a much loved family pet.

Set amongst the rolling Chiltern Hills, The Horse Trust’s Home of Rest for Horses caters for the retirement needs of over 100 horses, donkeys and ponies.

Their smaller relatives are also represented – Shetland ponies, donkeys and hinnies – and, of course, the occasional sad case of a neglected pony which requires urgent rehoming and very special care to restore it to health.

It is home to over 100 animals from all over the country, ranging from rescued ponies to retired drum horses from the Household Cavalry.

The residents at the stables share 200 acres of pristine paddocks and loose boxes in the Chiltern Hills, receiving the loving attention they deserve throughout their final years.

Once accepted into the sanctuary of the Horse Trust’s Home of Rest for Horses, they will remain at the sanctuary for the rest of their days.

Three large Shire horses have just arrived to enjoy their well-earned retirement with The Horse Trust.

Jim, at 19hh, is the biggest horse ever to come to The Trust’s Home of Rest for Horses. He arrived along with Tom and Tryfan.

Jim and Tom worked for many years for the Whitbread brewery as dray horses delivering the beer to local hostelries.

Only a month ago, two Shires, “Rosie” and “Duchess”,  joined their former stablemates, “Jim”, “Tom” and “Tryfan” at the Horse Trust’s Home of Rest in Buckinghamshire.

Owner Kay Parry said: “The horses have been part of our lives for more than 10 years. They are precious to us and have been a delight to hundreds of people.

“We are so grateful to The Horse Trust for continuing to keep them where they can continue to enjoy visitors and for providing the care and kindness for the horses in their later years.”

Among The Residents

Leonidus

This magnificent 17 hand, piebald, shire gelding was owned by the army for 18 years. A former military drum horse Leo was used for ceremonial occasions and regularly paraded at Trooping the Colour at Horse Guards Parade. Leo, born in 1982, joined fellow ex-drum horse, Janus at The Trust’s rest home in 2004.

Janus

Janus arrived at Speen in July 2001 from The Household Cavalry based at Hyde Park Barracks in Knightsbridge. Born in 1984 this 17.2 hand, skewbald gelding joined the army in 1989 and spent many years in service as a drum horse for the Blues and Royals. Janus and Leonidas enjoy grazing together in the tranquility and sanctuary of the Chiltern Hills.

Constantine

The Horse Trust is delighted to welcome its third drum horse to the sanctuary in Speen. Constantine, a 17.1 hh Clydesdale, served the Household Cavalry for 20 years and during that time paraded ten times at Trooping of the Colour.

This 23 year old gelding joins ex drum horses Janus and Leonidas who both retired to the Home a number of years ago.

Stevie

Stevie, an 11.3 hand white donkey, has recently joined our family of donkeys at the Home. This 30 year old cuddly newcomer is already attracting a lot of attention from visitors to the yard. He is very friendly and enjoys tons of love and affection.

Just Otto

Simply known as Otto this 17 hand black gelding arrived from The Royal Mews at Windsor Castle in 2004. Born in 1984 Otto won the Queen’s Cup twice and enjoyed eventing at Blenheim. Now teamed up with old stable mate Lancelot Otto has settled well into his new life in the Chiltern Hills.

Fagin

Fagin, a stunning 18.1 hand grey gelding has been reunited with old friends Dawkins and Cratchit from the Greater Manchester Mounted Police. Fagin was beginning to suffer a significant loss of sight in both of his eyes and has retired early from his duties with the police. He is an exceptional character and an adored addition to the herd.

Thomas

Thomas is a little black bundle of fun who is approximately 36 inches high.  This adorable Shetland pony, with a slightly greying muzzle, struts around his field with his head held high and has made many best friends in the short time he has been here – both human and horse!

Sefton

Sefton who retired from the Household Cavalry in Knightsbridge in 2005 is the nominal successor of a famous predecessor. The Home gave sanctuary over twenty years ago to Sefton, the horse that suffered multiple injuries at the hands of the IRA after the Hyde Park bombing on 20th July 1982. The ‘new’ Sefton is a striking 16.2 hand black gelding who was born in 1987.

 

A Safe Haven …

The Horse Trust manages the Home of Rest for Horses.  This sanctuary is funded solely by donations and legacies and provides lifetime care for more than 100 retired working horses, ponies and donkeys.

The Home of Rest for Horses ‘focus of charitable duty now extends far beyond providing a safe haven for elderly horses, ponies and donkeys.

Never losing touch with that core objective, it now embraces a wider agenda which priorities welfare, science and education and has therefore  re-named the charity “The Horse Trust”.

Website:   “The Horse Trust ~ Home of Rest for Horses”