Horse riders’ plea: help us stop mass cycling event in the New Forest

Bournemouth Echo: Riders leave New Park during the Wiggle 100 New Forest Sportive cycle Riders leave New Park during the Wiggle 100 New Forest Sportive cycle

HORSE owners have called on organisers of the New Forest Show to help in their battle against mass cycling rides in the New Forest.

They want the show to stop hiring out its site as a car park for people taking part in the Wiggle Sportive series, which regularly draws thousands of cyclists to the area.

It follows the controversy surrounding last weekend’s Wiggle event, which started at the showground at New Park, Brockenhurst.

A pony round-up on neighbouring land was cancelled amid safety fears, saboteurs tried to disrupt the event by spraying mud on roads – and some residents have accused cyclists of riding dangerously and urinating in public.

The New Forest Agricultural Show Society has vowed to consider the horse riders’ request at its board meeting next month. However, the next cycle ride on December 8 is at Brockenhurst College.

New Forest Equestrian Association chairman Tony Hockley described the cancellation of last Sunday’s pony drift as the “last straw”.

He added: “The purpose of the society, which leases the showground from the Forestry Commission, is to ‘support agriculture and equestrianism’. The use of the showground as a car park for commercial off-site events involving more than 1,000 cars and thousands of competitors is making life even harder for a struggling equine community that is the backbone of the rural economy 365 days a year.

“Without the availability of the showground site, these cycle events would be restricted to a much more manageable size.”

New Forest Show secretary Denis Dooley said: “We obtained the lease of New Park in 2005 and since this time have offered a low-cost, flexible venue to a variety of different organisations.

“We have recently received a letter from the NFEA expressing their concerns over the identity and size of future events held at New Park and will look into these concerns at our next board meeting on November 20.”

Wiggle organisers were unavailable for comment but previously accused the Verderers of failing to give enough advance warning of the pony round-up.

Comments (11)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

4:13pm Thu 17 Oct 13

we-shall-see says...

I am neither a horse owner/rider or a cyclist, but is not the New Forest there for everyone to enjoy? Not just those who make a living from it? .......
I am neither a horse owner/rider or a cyclist, but is not the New Forest there for everyone to enjoy? Not just those who make a living from it? ....... we-shall-see

4:28pm Thu 17 Oct 13

Franks Tank says...

But it's not the cyclists that are mowing down the horses on a regular basis is it?
And it's not the cyclist that are spray the roads with slurry either is it?

Jeez where do these people get off?
But it's not the cyclists that are mowing down the horses on a regular basis is it? And it's not the cyclist that are spray the roads with slurry either is it? Jeez where do these people get off? Franks Tank

4:45pm Thu 17 Oct 13

Michael992000 says...

Im a cyclist and agree consideration should be given to all parties, people should also be tolerant on both sides. But to ask for an event not to go on, to spray roads and endanger cyclists. Some of these country folk no doubt the pro hunting community just want it all there own way.
Im a cyclist and agree consideration should be given to all parties, people should also be tolerant on both sides. But to ask for an event not to go on, to spray roads and endanger cyclists. Some of these country folk no doubt the pro hunting community just want it all there own way. Michael992000

4:59pm Thu 17 Oct 13

BH10D says...

I cant see the problem myself, surely everyone is entitled to use the forest. The Equestrian community just sounds arrogant and elitist with demands such as this.
I cant see the problem myself, surely everyone is entitled to use the forest. The Equestrian community just sounds arrogant and elitist with demands such as this. BH10D

5:24pm Thu 17 Oct 13

Townee says...

Let's just ban everyone from the forest, that would stop all this rot.
Let's just ban everyone from the forest, that would stop all this rot. Townee

6:14pm Thu 17 Oct 13

Bob49 says...

" making life even harder for a struggling equine community that is the backbone of the rural economy 365 days a year. "

the rural economy ?

backbone ?

poor hard done by farmers who have to struggle along on the £5bn they ponce of the EU perhaps ?

the horsey set who can't come to terms with the fact that cycling now appears to be more popular that horse riding, maybe ?

or in reality, go to any rural community and you will see that the above two make up a very, very small part of that economy - and it is about time that was understood

the New Forest belongs to us not and not just those who choose to dress up as Toad of Toad Hall
" making life even harder for a struggling equine community that is the backbone of the rural economy 365 days a year. " the rural economy ? backbone ? poor hard done by farmers who have to struggle along on the £5bn they ponce of the EU perhaps ? the horsey set who can't come to terms with the fact that cycling now appears to be more popular that horse riding, maybe ? or in reality, go to any rural community and you will see that the above two make up a very, very small part of that economy - and it is about time that was understood the New Forest belongs to us not and not just those who choose to dress up as Toad of Toad Hall Bob49

7:01pm Thu 17 Oct 13

Hessenford says...

Five sex criminals currently 'missing' in Dorset, Armed robbery in the New Forest, murder in Boscombe, rapes in Bournemouth, so crime is down 8.6% is it.
Five sex criminals currently 'missing' in Dorset, Armed robbery in the New Forest, murder in Boscombe, rapes in Bournemouth, so crime is down 8.6% is it. Hessenford

8:40pm Thu 17 Oct 13

Tictock says...

Wow! Another case of NIMBY! Who the hell do these cyclists think they are? The New Forest is the express domain of the horsey community and how dare these oiks try to get in and enjoy themselves!! Sounds like a case for the resumption of capital punishment!

Get a life!
Wow! Another case of NIMBY! Who the hell do these cyclists think they are? The New Forest is the express domain of the horsey community and how dare these oiks try to get in and enjoy themselves!! Sounds like a case for the resumption of capital punishment! Get a life! Tictock

11:36pm Thu 17 Oct 13

Gooby! says...

The authorities that manage our national park will not put an end to the cyclists. The council won't put an end to the rides. These horse riders still think they must have their way? They have tried to sabotage the rides and have badly hurt a cyclist.

Can we establish how a cyclist or cycle event has hurt a horse rider? How does a cycling event on a small fraction of the national parks roads affect the horse riders ability to make money? Surely any activity can be scheduled around the couple of days per year wiggle hold these very popular events. The roads are not closed and the event is complete in just a few hours. The horse riders have many thousands of acres for their sport. They don't have to ride on the road, if you want to ride a horse on the road (a little odd) then there are plenty of roads in and out of the national park.

It seems to be militant NIMBYism by the horse riders.
The authorities that manage our national park will not put an end to the cyclists. The council won't put an end to the rides. These horse riders still think they must have their way? They have tried to sabotage the rides and have badly hurt a cyclist. Can we establish how a cyclist or cycle event has hurt a horse rider? How does a cycling event on a small fraction of the national parks roads affect the horse riders ability to make money? Surely any activity can be scheduled around the couple of days per year wiggle hold these very popular events. The roads are not closed and the event is complete in just a few hours. The horse riders have many thousands of acres for their sport. They don't have to ride on the road, if you want to ride a horse on the road (a little odd) then there are plenty of roads in and out of the national park. It seems to be militant NIMBYism by the horse riders. Gooby!

9:13am Fri 18 Oct 13

Franks Tank says...

So, thousands of people come to the New Forest out of season for a bike ride, spending their money in the pubs, shops, tea rooms and B & Bs.
They then go to home and tell their family, friends a colleagues about the wonderful welcome they received from the likes of Tony Hockley and his NIMBY mates.
Where do you think won't be the first choice for all these peoples next holiday?

I imagine the small business of the new Forest are writing thank you letters to Hockley at this very moment.
So, thousands of people come to the New Forest out of season for a bike ride, spending their money in the pubs, shops, tea rooms and B & Bs. They then go to home and tell their family, friends a colleagues about the wonderful welcome they received from the likes of Tony Hockley and his NIMBY mates. Where do you think won't be the first choice for all these peoples next holiday? I imagine the small business of the new Forest are writing thank you letters to Hockley at this very moment. Franks Tank

4:30pm Mon 21 Oct 13

TobyB1960 says...

Surprising how a few can make a news story. MOST horse owners in the New Forest, I include myself, do welcome visitors being in a car, on foot or cycle. As usual the 4x4 snobs are upset as they have to slow down to overtake a cyclist. I'm surprised they haven't complained about the ponies which wrecks their cars when they hit them.
Surprising how a few can make a news story. MOST horse owners in the New Forest, I include myself, do welcome visitors being in a car, on foot or cycle. As usual the 4x4 snobs are upset as they have to slow down to overtake a cyclist. I'm surprised they haven't complained about the ponies which wrecks their cars when they hit them. TobyB1960

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree