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Moving to London...what now?

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  • Moving to London...what now?

    So, there's a good chance that I will be moving to London UK this summer. I ride jumpers (and post here regularly...) and have no idea where to even begin looking into the horse scene over there. Does anyone have any experience riding and showing "across the pond"? What's it like? How's it different from over here in the States? How do I even start to find a good barn? A trainer? Shows?

    I realize that London is a huge place...we will likely be towards the north. But the final location will be based on where we want to end up, which will depend on a lot on what I find out about keeping my horses and showing over there.

    Any advice, insights, etc. would be HUGELY appreciated!

  • #2
    You will find a huge horse culture and many unique places to ride! We loved it and you will as well! Bit of an adjustment, but an amazing experiance! Have a great time!

    Comment


    • #3
      Ask away! Try posting on the horse and hound forum too to help you. We don't have a barn culture like you guys but we show week in week out with the emphasis on lots of one day shows and lots of shorter 3 day shows.
      Im from England- Don't bite!

      Comment


      • #4
        The advantage of London is that it is easy to travel all over the UK and into continental Europe. So horse wise, the world is your oyster.

        In the UK there are 180 British Eventing affiliated events each year, more than 3000 days of affiliated showjumping, dressage is growing daily every larger, showing happens all year round, racing takes place every day of the year bar two, there is hunting, team chasing, point to point, polo, polocross, horse ball, even Western. All are accessible within a an hour or so of London. There are more than 50 riding establishments within Greater London itself.

        Generally, we don't lease horses. It is a much more amateur horse world: people own and either look after their own horses or pay for a local livery. It is perfectly normal to wear jods going down a street - yup, I do it even in London. There are professional show people, but amateurs compete on the same terms. Prize money is ludicrous: in showing £1,000 is a really, really major prize. It is more about the horse and good performance than wearing the right brands or winning at all costs. I suspect we are less focused on a single discipline: many people do several things with the same horse. The animals are expected to have individual character and are treated with respect.

        As a start. perhaps look at 'where to ride' on the British Horse Society webpage and Association of British Riding Schools webpage. It can be hard to find high class performance horses that are for hire or lease. There is a point at which most people move from a school into ownership.

        Look at the Horse and Hound webpage (published weekly since the 1870s) as it covers many disciplines and will give you an idea of what, who, when and how they talk about it.

        So if you are seriously into competition, go to the websites for British Eventing, British Showjumping, British Dressage etc and learn more about events running and training available.

        Then, London is close to France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands and it is cheap to fly and easy to travel by train. SO travelling regularly and riding and competing there is actually a reasonable option if living in London.

        If I knew how, I would say PM me... I'm a natural born travel agent.
        "Good young horses are bred, but good advanced horses are trained" Sam Griffiths

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Willesdon View Post
          The advantage of London is that it is easy to travel all over the UK and into continental Europe. So horse wise, the world is your oyster.

          In the UK there are 180 British Eventing affiliated events each year, more than 3000 days of affiliated showjumping, dressage is growing daily every larger, showing happens all year round, racing takes place every day of the year bar two, there is hunting, team chasing, point to point, polo, polocross, horse ball, even Western. All are accessible within a an hour or so of London. There are more than 50 riding establishments within Greater London itself.

          Generally, we don't lease horses. It is a much more amateur horse world: people own and either look after their own horses or pay for a local livery. It is perfectly normal to wear jods going down a street - yup, I do it even in London. There are professional show people, but amateurs compete on the same terms. Prize money is ludicrous: in showing £1,000 is a really, really major prize. It is more about the horse and good performance than wearing the right brands or winning at all costs. I suspect we are less focused on a single discipline: many people do several things with the same horse. The animals are expected to have individual character and are treated with respect.

          As a start. perhaps look at 'where to ride' on the British Horse Society webpage and Association of British Riding Schools webpage. It can be hard to find high class performance horses that are for hire or lease. There is a point at which most people move from a school into ownership.

          Look at the Horse and Hound webpage (published weekly since the 1870s) as it covers many disciplines and will give you an idea of what, who, when and how they talk about it.

          So if you are seriously into competition, go to the websites for British Eventing, British Showjumping, British Dressage etc and learn more about events running and training available.

          Then, London is close to France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands and it is cheap to fly and easy to travel by train. SO travelling regularly and riding and competing there is actually a reasonable option if living in London.

          If I knew how, I would say PM me... I'm a natural born travel agent.
          Hey Alter, any chance you're looking for a roomie in London?

          Sounds absolutely lovely.
          EHJ | FB | #140 | watch | #insta

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Okay, I went from being worried to being REALLY excited! I've always loved London as one of my favorite cities, and I know it's as horsey a country as they come, but was very nervous about how I might fit in and find my way in the horse culture with zero connections or understanding of "how things work".

            This honestly sounds perfect - I have always kept my horses on my own and met trainers at shows or trailered in for lessons and clinics. I always did lots of different things with my horses (often to the shock of my trainers!), like riding cross country or doing dressage shows, or attending clinics in other disciplines. This might be a great change for me afterall!

            I will start with the British Horse Society site, thank you for the suggestion. If anyone else as other resources I should look into, please let me know.

            My husband was hoping to find a place in the the city for us and the kids. I was worried that this would make the horses completely inaccessible to me. But it's starting to sound like it could be possible after all.

            Thanks again!

            Comment


            • #7
              The great thing about Europe is that travel is so incredibly easy. Though you will have to get used to the whole wrong side of the road thing. In comparison to the US, no where in the US has the amount of public transportation that the UK and Europe has except for maybe NYC and other major major metros.
              Mendokuse

              Comment


              • #8
                Do you know where your work will be based? Tbh if you're planning to bring your horses with you living in the city probably isn't the easisest option. Although public transport is good it's not that good so you'd be spending an awful lot of time and and money travelling in and out of london to do horsey stuff.

                You might want to think about places within commuting distance of london for work, so (depending on which london station would be closest for commuting) you could look at Hertfordshire/Essex, Berkshire/Buckinghamshire/Oxfordshire, Surrey/Kent.

                In your position I'd be looking at a competition livery yard, something like this (just from a quick google, not personal recommendation!) http://www.thundry.co.uk/#

                If there's anything more specific I can help with just ask

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by EasterEgg View Post

                  You might want to think about places within commuting distance of london for work, so (depending on which london station would be closest for commuting) you could look at Hertfordshire/Essex, Berkshire/Buckinghamshire/Oxfordshire, Surrey/Kent.

                  In your position I'd be looking at a competition livery yard, something like this (just from a quick google, not personal recommendation!) http://www.thundry.co.uk/#

                  If there's anything more specific I can help with just ask
                  So, I will be helping open a new office for our company in London, and will fortunately have a lot of influence on location. It will obviously need to be someplace that is easily accessible for people, so I can't put it out in the middle of nowhere just so I can be close to my horses. But if there are certain areas of town that are better than others, please let me know.

                  The livery yard URL you sent looks LOVELY, and just about what I would be looking for. Does anyone have a sense of typical rates? Even just a broad range would be helpful.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Alter View Post
                    So, I will be helping open a new office for our company in London, and will fortunately have a lot of influence on location. It will obviously need to be someplace that is easily accessible for people, so I can't put it out in the middle of nowhere just so I can be close to my horses. But if there are certain areas of town that are better than others, please let me know.

                    The livery yard URL you sent looks LOVELY, and just about what I would be looking for. Does anyone have a sense of typical rates? Even just a broad range would be helpful.
                    That particular yard had their fee rates linked to one of the pages on their site - here you go:
                    http://www.thundry.co.uk/#/charges/4536291258
                    ~Drafties Clique~Sprite's Mom~ASB-loving eventer~
                    www.gianthorse.photoreflect.com ~ http://photobucket.com/albums/v692/tarheelmd07/

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Originally posted by tarheelmd07 View Post
                      That particular yard had their fee rates linked to one of the pages on their site - here you go:
                      http://www.thundry.co.uk/#/charges/4536291258
                      Thanks, I looked but couldn't find it. It's wonderfully descriptive and comprehensive.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Good luck with your move. Sounds exciting!
                        “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
                        ¯ Oscar Wilde

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If you have influence on where you can set up your office, look at Richmond or Windsor. I spent a summer working there and both are really nice areas- great for families with a bit of a city vibe. And VERY accessible to London- they are both at the end of the underground lines (so you don't have to transfer trains to get there). Also, they are very close to some great horse areas- my horse stayed in the states, but I did ride as often as I could at some really fun cross country stables. Good Luck, I'm jealous!!!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            You have two ways of doing this: live in London and travel out to the horses or live out of London, with the horses close by, even at home, and travel in to work. Both options depend on public transport because having a car in most of London is a desperate waste of time. Cyclists travel faster than cars in central London, there is a daily congestion charge and parking can be a total ?@#%.

                            When deciding where to put an office for the company, depends on what the company does. If you want a good address and a place that visitors can reach easily, then central London is better than the edge. If you don't want status and go for horse convenience then a borough around the edge is OK, west and north London better than east. it is harder to reach the rest of the UK from 'South of the river' [Thames] because London is in the way but a doddle getting to continental Europe if you choose to ride in Belgium, for example. Belgium is probably the showjumping capital of the world in the number of shows put on.

                            Pick a spot in Central London: Westminster, The City, then draw a circle about 50 miles out from this point and then look at the railway lines. For example, Cambridge to London is 45 minutes and trains run every 15 minutes, nonstop. That gives you a lot of places to look. Horse activities happen anywhere, everywhere.

                            A previous poster suggested Windsor and Richmond - Richmond is in London and actually has remarkably good local riding in Richmond Park though limited to the riding paths. There are several stables. Windsor, a bit further out and not in London, has Windsor Great Park and loads of stables. But is not so good if travelling by train into London.
                            "Good young horses are bred, but good advanced horses are trained" Sam Griffiths

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