New faces at the BHDTA
November 2011

After the BHDTA AGM and Conference in October, a number of changes have taken place among the officials and Council members.

New Chairman - Jock McFarlane

The BHDTA Council have appointed a new Chairman after the retirement of Tony Bache.

Having acted as treasurer for the Scottish Carriage Driving Association and been involved with the organisation of Hopetoun, in 2010 Ian Gilbert suggested to Jock he should put his name forward for election to the BHDTA Council. Before this, Jock admitted he was quite happy for others to do the council thing. However, wanting to help and thinking it would be quite interesting, he agreed. Before his first council meeting Tony Bache phoned to ask if he would consider becoming Vice-Chairman with the possibility of taking on the Chairman?s role the following year when Tony retired. This came as a bolt out of the blue! He can't actually remember saying "yes"!

Jock McFarlane decided to give up ridden eventing on turning 50 and wanted to try something new. His mother was a very good friend of Gladys Dale,so he had a connection with carriage driving and wondered if he could perhaps drive his 16.3hh Thoroughbred event horse.

Carol Boswell (nee Dale) helped train him to harness and Jock quickly became involved in the Scottish Carriage Driving club scene. He admits he had great fun learning to drive his ex-eventer, but decided a proper driving horse was needed (whatever that is!). He bought Wodka, his current Advanced single horse, as a 4 year old from Holland in 2007 and agrees that sometimes you get lucky when you buy a horse!

Jock points out that the BHDTA have 11 excellent council members who live all over the country, generously giving up their time on behalf of the sport and its members. He sees his role as aiming to gel the individuals into a team, to drive the sport forward and to develop and promote it into a sport where novice to international drivers can achieve their goals at our wonderful events.

Treasurer - David Titmuss

David Titmuss was co-opted to Council at their recent meeting and has accepted the post of Treasurer.

He has considerable experience dealing with financial matters having spent over 40 years in various accounting roles within industries as varied as iron foundry and insurance. David has now retired to his small-holding, which is home to his driving horse and small herd of Alpacas. He competed in events with the Midlands and Windsor Park clubs and qualified for the Novice Championships in 1998, also qualifying for the indoor final twice. Most will recognise him from stewarding at Sandringham, Windsor and Erddig over the past few years and others for the years he served on the committee of Midlands Driving Trials Group as their treasurer.

David is conscious that the BHDTA needs to be inclusive for drivers of all abilities, whilst supporting those that represent the country internationally. He is acutely aware of the important part our stewards and supporters play in the sport that has given him much pleasure over the years and the duty he now has to see it shepherd its resources and use them wisely for its future development.

Council member - Wilf Bowman-Ripley

Wilf Bowman-Ripley?s introduction to driving was as a groom for George Bowman at the age of 12. He then went on to compete himself at national and international level and represented Great Britain at no less than 6 World Championships, winning a gold medal in 1997.

Wilf is one of the recently qualified UKcc level 3 coaches, the first time this level has been achieved for driving. He is one of the team trainers for the Young Drivers and has been team trainer for the combined ponies championships.

He runs the Ashfields Carriage Driving Centre in Essex, which holds a National event at the beginning of May. He is also involved with the East Anglia carriage driving group, and involved with the organisation of club events, training camps, and 7 very successful junior camps.

When standing for election to the BHDTA Council, Wilf felt that his knowledge as a competitor, competing both in the UK and abroad, and ability to listen to other competitors? views would be very helpful. He can identify what they want from driving and bring these issues to the attention of Council. He feels that his wide range of experience from the perspective of coach, competitor and event organiser will be advantageous.


Council member - James Broome

Having been involved with horses his whole life, James has lived and breathed every level of equestrian competition since leaving university with a Management Sciences BSc.

He has a strong desire to get more equestrian people aware of Horse Driving Trials so that we can increase the number of people that love our sport.

He currently drives a pony pair at National and International level.