Heavy horse event gallops off to a successful start at Blists Hill Victorian Town

Gentle giants roamed the streets of the Blists Hill Victorian Town on the first day of a Bank Holiday 'heavy horses' event.

Heavy horses trotted the streets of Blists Hill
Heavy horses trotted the streets of Blists Hill

Carthorses of the same kind that played vital roles in industry a hundred years ago were brought to the popular Shropshire attraction on Saturday for the beginning of the event.

Steve Ledsham has been Blists Hill's jobmaster (a historic term for someone who owns and hires out horses) for more than 20 years, and it was largely thanks to his connections that a variety of large working horses were brought to Shropshire for the event, which is continuing on Sunday and Monday.

Kieran Smith admires George the horse

Resident Shire horses Casey, Bernie, George and Basil welcomed Clydesdales and Comtois from around the country to the delight of visitors. They were given traditional harnesses and showcased the kind of work they would have done in the past, with their owners on hand to explain further.

The first day was a big hit, said visitor engagement director Justin Tose. It is the latest in a series of themed weekends, intended to welcome visitors back before the full reopening in line with coronavirus guidelines later this month.

The heavy horses event was a big hit on the first day

"I was really, really pleased with how it's gone. It brings the whole town to life when you've got the activities and the visitors back," he said.

"The events are to encourage people to get back out . We're now building back up to fully reopening."

Jobmaster Mr Ledsham said: "I thought it was excellent. The main thing when you bring in so many horses together and there are people about is the safety, but they all behaved impeccably.

Ted the horse with Katy Darley

"I'm hoping the weather forecast is going to last – we can control lots of things but we can't control the weather."

There will be timed demonstrations and horse omnibus rides throughout Sunday and Monday.

Most Read

Most Read

Top Stories

More from the Shropshire Star

UK & International News