Entries are in, the judges have made their choices. We can announce the winners of Walk for War Horse 2021, organised in association with the Donkey Breed Society.
From all corners of the UK, people and their horses, ponies, donkeys and dogs took to the roads and hills throughout April to raise money for animal sanctuaries and good causes. The idea was to encourage animal lovers to register interest in trekking the hills and valleys near their homes while capturing on film the sheer enjoyment of taking part. We split our competition into three parts – Best Narrative, Best Photo and Most Miles Covered. Our winners have received their prizes and are featured below. Thank you to everyone who took part and helped us during these challenging times. We hope to see you all again next year.
BEST NARRATIVE – Shona Brash from Links Garage, Port Seton, Scotland with her beautiful horse Indie Beau Scotia.
Shona kept us entertained with the exploits of Beau who is a real character and has even written a poem of their travels (with Shona’s help of course) and which you can read below by clicking the arrow. The pair walked 48.6 miles in the beautiful countryside around their home, and they shared their adventures on the Seton Sands Community Ponies facebook page. Shona says: “We set up a GoFundMe page and raised £1,325, which will be split equally between four great causes – War Horse Memorial, Frugaldom, Scottish Borders Donkey Sanctuary and East Lothian Animal Rescue and Advice.
“The local newspaper covered Indie’s journey, so we’ll keep the fundraising open for another few days in case others might like to contribute. Indie’s mum was in a dreadful state when she came to us almost six years ago. We had no idea she had a ‘passenger’ on board, but I know she’ll be every bit as proud of her lad as we are when she hears of his adventures. Thanks so much for allowing us to be part of the Walk for War Horse challenge.”
Fantastic Friday…Or Not! – by Beau and Shona Brash
Fantastic Friday started well for intrepid Indie Beau
The field gate opened, out he stepped and wondered ‘where to go’?
“Not to the right”, he quietly thought . . . not my favourite, that is true
“You decide”, two leggie said, “I’ll leave it up to you.”
So it was off along the roadway, and through the clanging gate
McFlory whinnied loudly, I’ll get my coat if you’ll wait”!
“No, No” Indie whickered back, “it’s my turn to explore
the places beyond Sandy Walk we’ve never been before.”
I thought it was a little odd, he’s walked out so many times
But things look very different, when there’s a sun that shines!
Branches heavy, hang with leaves, sunlight peeking through
Things that once were nibble high, are now too high to chew!
We walked on through the Meadow, round by Seton Mill
Indie pondering a munch stop, once he’d climbed the stoorie hill
Two leggie had a different plan and onwards we did go
Past Groundcare team, on putting green, with lawnmower and hoe.
Grasses moving in the breeze, Indie’s nostrils flare
A pony eating, scary thing must be hiding there!
Calm doon two leggie tells him, it’s likely just a mouse
Creeping through the long grass, heading to his house.
We cross in front of Eagle’s Lodge and onto Rangers’ Camp
Down the path, across the bridge, hear the echo of our stamp
Bunnies Wood is sunny. Sunny! Looking up towards the right
But dark towards the seaside, with no bunnies in sight!
Indie spots a favorite place, he dreams he’d love to be!
Happily grazing No.10, on the green at Longniddry.
You canny dae that Indie boy, he hears two leggie say
Oh well, a dream it will remain – until another day.
On through the leafy canopy, every nook explored
Two leggie whistles, three steps back and patient for reward
We check and looking left then right, cross over to the beach
Indie suddenly realised – his least favorite place we’ve reached!
“She’ll make me paddle in the sea and walk in yon soft sand
And stop and start to litter pick – it’s not what I had planned!
She must have tricked me somewhere, just where I’m not too sure
But it’s still Fantastic Friday, and a fabby Seton tour!”
BEST PHOTO – Emma Lukacs from Selkirk for her lovely photo of her daughter Hannah with best friend, Blue.
Six-year-old Hannah Lukacs, riding her best friend Blue, was so keen to support Walk for War Horse that she set up a JustGiving page, invited family and friends to sponsor her and raised £435.The Lukacs family live on a farm in Ashkirk, in Selkirk, and Hannah and her mum were joined on their walks by big brother Jack, Benny the black fell pony and Cecil, the farm’s big driving cob, and their dogs Hilde, Eva and Chase.
Mum Emma says: “We did a lot of walks locally, clocking up 50.28 miles, and visited a few exciting places in the Borders. We have walked around Bowhill, which is an estate just outside of Selkirk, and we have visited Stobs army camp just south of Hawick that was used during both world wars and is steeped in history. For our final walk we walked up the Eildons, south of Melrose. It has many hill forts going back to the Bronze Age. The Romans later used them as a signalling tower for the immense Roman fort built at Trimontium. We’ve had a great time through April taking part in Walk for War Horse.”
MOST MILES COVERED – Jill Castles from Northern Ireland with her three donkeys Percy, Dec and Dave the Rave.
Winner Jill, from Lurgan, in County Armagh, says: “The boys had a fab time exploring Northern Ireland during the month of April. In total they walked a whopping 142 miles between them, around local forest parks at Castlewellan and Gosford, They even enjoyed a trip to the beach.”