Autumn Newsletter 2014

The volunteers at the Northcote Heavy Horse Centre.

The volunteers at the Northcote Heavy Horse Centre.

Dear supporters,

It’s hard to believe that 25 years ago the Northcote Heavy Horse Centre opened its gates to our first ever visitors and in that time we have looked after 44 amazing horses who have needed us. Each of those 25 years has been a struggle to survive and new fundraising ideas are always being thought of. Sadly this year has been no different, but we keep on hanging in there and we can only do it with the help of our adopters and supporters so a big thank you to all of you. In this newsletter you will find all of your usual horsey updates and news from what the volunteers have been getting up to and much more. We know Christmas is fast approaching and our new catalogue is now available but may I suggest that a horse adoption also makes a great gift for any occasion and you’ll be supporting a worthy cause!
We hope everyone had a wonderful summer and will have a fantastic Christmas.
Best Wishes
All of the Northcote Team xx


It is with great sadness that we had to say our goodbyes to Cossack this year. He had been with us for just over a year and was 26 years old. He had increasing health problems and had started to find it difficult to get up after a rest and he was also finding it difficult to keep weight on. With advice from the vet the decision to say goodbye needed to be made as it is believed that he may have had internal complications too, so the kindest thing to do was to let him go. He will be deeply missed by many of the volunteers and visitors alike. He was a true gentle giant who took himself to bed at night and waited at the gate to let us know when he was hungry. A true gentleman. R.I.P



Can you help by buying from our Amazon Wish List?

Can you help by buying from our Amazon Wish List?

Amazon Wish List

Help comes in many different forms and some supporters prefer not to
help us by leaving a cash donation but instead to donate an actual
product so we have created an Amazon wishlist to allow our supporters
to be able to do this. The list is of items that we are currently in need of and it will be regularly updated with new items as they are needed by us so please keep checking back.


Tiko: Firstly we have Tiko who is a warm blood and currently on loan to the centre. Terena the centre manager had been doing some work with Tiko at a local stables but due to commitments at Northcote it made sense that he came to stay for a while to continue his training.

MerlinMerlin “Dude” is a Shetland stallion who is 5 years old. Terena saw him and immediately knew we had to have him. As Bonnie and Duncan are getting on in years we think he will make a great addition as one of the smaller horses for visitors to see. We are hoping he will also become our falconry pony alongside Arthur “Digit”.

PlutoPluto is a 15 year old Lipizzaner who needed a new home due to his owner being poorly. He has a fear of traveling and it took Terena & Maria nearly 3 hours in rain and hail to get him into the box for his journey and this was only after veterinary assistance. This chap has taken to everything thrown at him and will do amazing things for us so watch this space.

MooseOur Belgian Trekpaard has been visited by Antonia from ALF Holistic Health on a number of occasions over the summer. She has been getting massage to try and help her circulation. For those of you who don’t know Moose has a condition known as CPL which attacks the lymphatic system and causes swellings partially in her lower legs and this can make her very uncomfortable.

BosunBosun was put back into harness last winter in readiness for the summer season of dray rides for visitors, sadly Bosun developed a problem and scans showed he had heat spots on his shoulder and stifle and he needed rest. In August he started to do light work again.

SteveAs usual Steve has been our poster boy for promoting our events throughout the summer and once again paid a couple of visits to Skegness where he had his traditional ice cream for his efforts. He also paid a visit to the Village in Skegness for a long reining demo.

LovellThis lovely lady is no problem to us at all. As most of you are aware, she is totally wild and we cannot handle her but she has spent her summer out in the fields with the boys and she’ll go wherever the horses go.

Bonnie & DuncanThese guys are still enjoying retirement and not doing much. They get taken for a walk twice a week by Sarah one of our regular volunteers which they look forward too.

CharityCharity has had a mystery illness over the summer. We thought she had colic and treated her for it but when the vets were called they were not overly concerned about her but still the problem persisted. We believe now it may be because she kept bringing herself into season so she has been given supplements in her tea.

Pedro & Orbit: These two have been doing work together. They have been broken to harness and are learning to work as a pair being long reined. We hope to continue their training and have them pulling a small cart together soon. Pedro was also broken to ride at the beginning of the year and we are hoping to take him to some shows with us.

Rosie: Last winter we put Rosie in harness and long reined her in hope that she would pull our dray. 2015 should see her in the dray with visitors. She has settled well since we lost Harvey and now spends her days with Moose and Charity.

DanteThis year he has continued his training for our Medieval shows but he still prefers being on his podium and showing off although he did a fabulous job demonstrating skill at arms with Terena and looks fab in his costume!

Buster: We have been doing loading practice with Buster. Some of you may be aware that before he came to us he had an accident where he cut his leg quite badly being loaded into a trailer. This has made him nervous of loading and we are now trying to get him to load in either the trailer or
horsebox so he can come out to shows with us.

Arthur Digit

We would like to welcome Arthur “Digit” to the Northcote family. Arthur is a two year old Harris Hawk and has toe missing from his left foot hence the middle name Digit. He has not been with us long but we are hoping to have him in shows next year and working with Merlin. Arthur has come to us through Derek Tindall and his birds of prey and a big thank you needs to go to Derek for helping us get Arthur settled.

Ducks & Geese

Another new arrival. These three ducklings arrived at Northcote on the same day as Merlin. They lived in the horse trailer for a few weeks until they were big enough to go down to the pond and join Mr Wilson and his son Junior (Geese) and the other ducks.

Masked Ball Evening at the Spilsby Theatre

Masked Ball Evening at the Spilsby Theatre

Due to the terrible whether at the beginning of May we had to cancel our Medieval Tournament because of flooding. This is the first time we have had to cancel an event day so it was heart breaking as these are our real money makers. The volunteers were doing everything they could to try and save the day and were even bucketing water from the fields by hand but the evening just bought with it more heavy rain. Thankfully the Summer Fete in June had much better weather and although not as popular as our tournament days we had a great turnout and the most stalls ever to an event. We also held two banquets this year. The first was smaller in numbers but still a great night was had and we had some great feedback too. In August we held our final Medieval tournament which saw Lady Isobel and Buster as the winners. There were lots of stalls in attendance and we must say a big thank you to Bruce at Spilsby theatre and Derek Tindall and his Birds of Prey for helping make the events a success. Coming up in November we have our masked ball which is to be held at the Spilsby theatre on the night of the 15th. More details about our events can be found here and Facebook page.


We have now raised over £1500 with our supporters using easyfundraising. This is a free scheme where if you shop online through the easyfundraising site with over 3000 well known retailers available we will get a percentage of the total cost up to 15% and all at no extra cost to you. Please visit our easyfundraising page at the following address to find out more

On Saturday 2nd August we took Steve to The Village Church Farm Museum in Skegness. We were supposed to
be doing a long reining demo but unfortunately we had bad weather but he got to meet the mayor, eat the grass and had a few admirers too.

We are available to travel to shows away from the centre. We offer a wide range of events including Medieval, Western, Equestrian Vaulting, Meet and Greets or we can attend with a stall and no horse. We also attend talks and school fetes! To find out more or get a quote
Bplease call Terena on 07899 815 960.

We have been voted number 2 visitor attraction of places to visit in Skegness on trip advisor!

Our feed suppliers W.N Shrive and Son have come up with a way for our supporters to help with our feed costs. You can now purchase feed on our behalf by calling them on 01754763295. Just let them know you would like to donate to the Northcote Heavy Horse Centre and let them know how much you would like to donate and they will do the rest. They accept credit and debit card payments and will take the amount off our next bill.

We have also come up with a very simple way for you to help boost our much needed funds and benefit the environment. We are running an unwanted jewellery recycling collection with recycling for good causes. Please donate any unwanted jewellery; gold, silver, costume jewellery, watches... then all of your unwanted items can be turned into cash for us. You could do a full “spring clean” of your jewellery box or just give items you no longer wear, even damaged, broken and incomplete items will help; so all the odd earrings and snapped chains are a great start. Please send your unwanted jewellery to us here at the centre and we can place it in to our special envelopes ready for collection.

We need to say a huge thank you to the Metheringham Animal Welfare Supporters Group (MAWS) who raised a fantastic £1080 for the centre. Volunteers Maria and Izzy were presented with the cheque in August at a presentation evening.

Since the end of July we have been lucky enough to have a group of men on a work placement volunteer at the centre. They have helped us to get lots done including the painting of all the portacabins, weeding and hedge trimming, they muck out the big guys every morning that they are here, fill the duck pond, poo pick the fields, collect hay and lots more. This has allowed us to get a lot of our odd jobs done and is setting us up well for the winter.

Please keep sending us your used stamps to Northcote Stamp Appeal, Gt Steeping, Spilsby, PE23 5PS. We have had a great response so far to this so please keep them coming. All you have to do is cut around the stamp leaving at least 1cm and pop it in an envelope then send them to us at the above address.
We also have lots more information and photos on our new & improved website! Please don’t forget to visit.

Would you consider leaving us a legacy? This enables us to continue caring for these magnificent animals in a safe and stable environment. Of course your family will be your first thought when writing a will but anything you can donate no matter how small would be invaluable to the work we do here at the centre. When writing or updating your will your solicitor will need the following information. Northcote Heavy Horse Centre, Sandy Lane, Gt. Steeping, Spilsby, Lincolnshire, PE23 5PS and our registered charity Number which is 1137340.

Thanks for reading!

Northcote HorsesComment