and Exmoor Ponies
(and sneaking in Poldark!)
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'Moorland Mousie?' I hear you asking.
'Moorland Mousie?' I hear you asking.
THIS is Moorland Mousie....
yes it's a book. I've had a copy, and the second volume, 'Older Mousie' since I was about eleven. Because of these two books and the wonderful evocative illustrations...
... I have always been fascinated by Exmoor, even though I'd only ever been on holiday to the area twice - once when I was about five, then when my daughter was about nine. I grew to love it more when I started writing my Sea Witch Voyages - my editor lived in Devon. Then of course, Fate played a huge part and now I live in Devon.
One other thing I had always wanted since being very young was an Exmoor Pony. Again, of course, purely because of this delightful book.
Moving to Devon I had to get...
|My daughter riding our Exmoor Pony|
Mr Mischief side saddle
|and side saddle display:|
Little Red Riding Hood
and then we added:
6 month old Exmoor Filly
(and I bet your life I'll end up with more!)
|The Farleywater Herd Oct/Nov 2014|
Straight from the Moor
(our little Siren is in there somewhere)
photo by kind permission of Dawn Westacott
To be accepted, today, as a 'pure' Exmoor there must be no white markings anywhere.
Exmoors, even though they are only about 13.00 hands to 13.2 can easily carry an adult - the are very strong, very determined, with a mind of their own. If our pony wants to be in THAT field, not THIS field... he puts himself in THAT field. Regardless of what might be in his way. He goes over, under or through. The downside to that thick mane... he can't feel electric fencing through it.
Having survived for over 2,000 years, Exmoor Ponies have developed a high level of intelligence and a brain to match.
Mister Mischief lives up to his name... but I wouldn't part with him for the world.
Siren is not yet a year old. At the moment she's a good little girl. I'm expecting this to change when she reaches her 'teenage' years (about three in horse years)
Well, The Moorland Mousie Trust is a rescue centre for Exmoor Ponies:
From their WEBSITE
The Moorland Mousie Trust is a small, local charity founded in 2000 by Val Sherwin and Sue Wingate. The trust was named after the Moorland Mousie books written by Golden Gorse, the pseudonym of Muriel Wace.
The book, written in 1929, is a story about the life of an Exmoor Pony called Mousie and was read by Val as a child. On a visit to Exmoor to purchase an Exmoor pony Val became aware that many of the foals, mostly colts, would go to the meat market for slaughter. Although she originally intended on buying one filly foal, when realising what might happen to it's brother she bought him too. They were named Abbi and Yorrick. It was from this experience that an idea was born.
When the charity was founded it's aim was to ensure that no more foals would leave their mothers on the moor to go to the meat market. Since those early days, the work of the trust has moved on to encompass all aspects of Exmoor pony welfare.
The Exmoor Pony Centre, owned by the Moorland Mousie Trust, was opened to the public in the year 2006. Located in the heart of the Exmoor National Park it is the hub of all our activity with the Exmoor Ponies. It provides a permanent and specialised base for the foals when they arrive straight off the moor. It is the home to some 20 of our permanent residents, including Abbi and Yorrick. At our Centre, visitors to Exmoor who might otherwise not be lucky enough to see an Exmoor pony have the opportunity to come into close contact with them.
Funding for the development of the Centre was provided by DEFRA's Rural Enterprise Scheme and the Exmoor National Park Authority Sustainable Development Fund. The Centre is run by a small team of dedicated staff and volunteers.
Incidentally, the Moorland Mousie book, which had been out of print for many years, was re-published by the Trust in 2011. The hardback book, with a foreword from our Patron, HRH The Duchess of Cornwall is available from the Centre or from our on-line shop.
|The area around Doone valley features in |
Ripples In The Sand and
On the Account
(yet to be published)
(photo Simon Murgatroyd)
|and the same view for a recent advert|
Have you been watching Poldark?
Noticed any ponies "working" at the mines? Well these are Exmoor Ponies so...
Two Very Handsome fellers...
what say you?
Visitors might also like the 'J' post.... J is for (show) Jumping
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