22nd April 2015

The International Shetland Pony Committee (ISPC) met in Amsterdam on 18th April for the 2015 annual meeting,, hosted this year by the Netherlands Shetland Pony Society.  Representatives from all the European Daughter Stud Books were there.  We had a convivial meeting and amongst the subjects discussed were International Veterinary Standards and the forthcoming August 2015 International Show in Finland, with Denmark offering to host the next International Show and France strongly registering an interest for the one after Denmark for which we thanked both countries. We discussed links from each country's Society Website being added to all the Daughter Stud Books websites for ease of accessing information.  The recently proposed European Database of all Equines was reported and discussed. I had spoken to the Scottish Government on behalf of the SPSBS and could report that they were working on it and hoped to be completed by the July deadline. Most other delegates reported the same apart from Hungary who already have one in place.  We had a very interesting lecture from a Swedish graduate relating to genetic bone disease in equines and then were driven to neighbouring riding centre for a lovely demonstration of Holland's Champion Shetland ponies. all of whom were beautifully shown and presented.  Mr Jan Bakhuisen, President of the Netherlands Shetland Pony Society, ably assisted by Ms Connie Vries and their team, gave us a very interesting and stimulating day followed by an excellent evening meal where we were able to have a more informal chat about our societies, our ponies, our thoughts and ideas as we renewed old friendships while also making new friends.  I thanked Holland profusely on behalf of all the Countries present for their splendid hospitality and perfectly arranged meeting and we now look forward to the 2016 ISPC Meeting which is to be hosted in Vienna by the Austrian Shetland Pony Society for which offer I thank Dr Manfred Maier who represents Austria as President of all  Austrian Pony Societies and who has a wealth of knowledge of the ISPC. I will give a more detailed report in the next magazine but thought you would like to see the photographs now which Johanna Vaurio from Finland took so well and to have a brief outline of the meeting.

Anne De La Warr