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Our newsletters filtered out a bit last year but we are back hoping to keep you up to date with all that is going on in the following weeks and months.

We finished off 2016 with an outing to Aras an Uachtarain, the Army Equitation Centre and the Garda Mounted Unit in the Halloween Break.  This was a great day out, enjoyed by everyone who came along and we must thank David Hathaway for all his efforts in making the day such a success … we really did get preferential treatment!

Our AGM was held in November and with only 14 families being represented we took that as a sign that you are mostly happy with how things are progressing!  Details of committee members can be found on our updated website and we would encourage you to contact committee members if you have and ideas or thoughts on things that we should be doing.  We shall also be sending out a questionnaire shortly and hope that you will take the time to fill it in and return it to us.

We held our annual Christmas Party and Awards Evening at the end of December and once again I think everyone enjoyed themselves.  There was an issue with the quality and portions of the supper and some of you will be pleased to here that we raised the issue with Murphys and they gave us a reduction on the bill.  Thank you to everyone who contributed so generously to our spot prizes and raffle.

Our Awards went to …..

Heidi Woods ……  Bravest Rider
Lillah Shaw ……..  Best Turned Out
Jamie Doyle …….  Games Player of the Year
David Hathaway ..  Parent of the Year
Jack Cosgrave ….  Grandparent of the Year
Sophie McConnell . Sibling of the Year
Cian Byrne ……..    Future Eventer of the Year
Jack Nolan ……..    Shillelagh Pony Club Member of the Year
Thomas Sharry ......Most photographic member of the year.

Congratulations to you all.

Moving forward, we hope to have our first rallies of the year during the February half term and then hold a few regular cross country rallies over the next few weeks in preparation for Hunter Trials … the Inter Schools Hunter Trials being on 25th March and the Hunter Trial Championships are on 22nd April.  If you are interested in your child taking part in cross country rallies please text me on 085 7189488.

This years camp will once again be held by kind permission of Alma and Michael Byrne at Butterfly Farm from Monday 3rd July to Saturday 8th July ….. we look forward to another very enjoyable week.

Membership is now due and must be paid before you can take part in any Pony Club activity …. you can renew online through the Shillelagh Pony Club website ….. and as always, new members are very welcome so if you know anyone who might be interested spread the word!


Pony camp 2017

The SPC pony camp will take place this year between 3rd and 8th July at Butterfly Farm. Registration will take place one month before camp at Murphy's Hotel.  (date TBC). Please note that membership must be fully paid in order to register for Pony Camp.  Fees can be paid online here

SPC Fundraiser:Beach Ride and BBQ

Oldbawn Beach, Ballygarret, Sunday March 12th, 11:00am
Kids €10
Adults €15
for ride out & BBQ

Sale of unwanted/2nd hand tack & horsey stuff also costume jewellery on the day.
If you have any of the above to donate, please contact Brid on 086 8587623

Training for C+ standard

This year we will be providing ongoing training for all who have done their road safety test. The instructor will be Stephen Byrne and there will be 6 rallies in total before Easter.  Everyone MUST attend at least 4 even if you do not plan to take the C+ at the moment, but you do want to  stay with your group for camp with those of a similar riding standard.
The cost will be €20 euro per lesson, some will be stable management and some riding. Booking will be done online and it would be appreciated if 4 sessions can be booked in advance.

The proposed dates for training are as follows:

  • Sat 18th Feb, Stable Managenent Cherry Lodge, Redcross
  • Thurs 23rd Feb (half term),  The Field, Laois (He take others that day as well) 
  • Sat 4th March, Stable Management, Cherry Lodge, Redcross
  • Sat 18th March, Coolboy
  • Then 2 days during Easter holidays. 
We would hope to have a C+ test during the Easter holidays.
Can anyone who wishes to take the C+ test, please confirm to Jackie as soon as possible at 087 2389089.

Training for C and D test standard

If you are interested in taking your D+ and C test please let Mairead know so that we can get an idea of numbers.

Rallies for the D+ And C test will be begin around the mid term break. As was discussed last year all members are expected to attend training for their current group regardless if they intend on taking the test or not. There will be no pressure for any member to undertake a test however it is compulsory that all members attend 4 out of 6 training rallies to remain in their group in pony camp. 

For example: if a member completed their C test last year, they will be expected to attend rallies for road safety;  if a member has completed their road safety they are expected to attend C+ rallies. If anyone has any questions feel free to ring Mairead on 087-9285188.

Showjumpng event

We are having a team event in March (date TBC). There will be 50cm, 70cm and 90cm. Teams must be made up of one rider jumping each height. Everyone will be catered for. Time and venue will be confirmed.  


Lessons for the under 12, Robbie Bailey and John Ledingham will begin around Easter. Anyone wishing to jump on a team for these competitions will be expected to attend 6 showjumping rallies on the same horse/pony. Any queries contact Mairead.

Dressage Lessons

Anybody who is interested in participating in dressage lessons please contact Nicola on 087 6054956. Lessons will be arranged for individuals/small groups at all levels depending on your goals for you and your pony/horse.

Mounted Games

Huge well done to all our members who have participated in mounted games trials over the last few weekends. Congrats to Owen Kemmy & Stephen Sharry going to England and Scotland, Grace Jackson being chosen to compete on the Irish team going to England, Zach Furlong and Roisin Mangan going to Bath and West and Mollie Kinsella going to Windsor. Well done and best of luck to you all and your team mates. A lot of training ahead for you all.

Membership Fees

Membership fees for 2017 are now due and you can payonline here

New Website

We are delighted to announce that SPC has a brand new website.  You can check it out at
Thanks to Michael O'Brien for putting it together.  It will be a great way for all members to keep up to date with news, events, and results.


The Minimus is a competition consisting of three phases, swimming, running and riding. It takes place over two days. Points awarded for the competitors performance in each phase and the competitor with the most points after the three phases is deemed the overall winner of the competition.

You must be Under 12 on the 1st of January of the current year to be eligible to take part in the Championships. However new members to the Pony Club who are older can take part HC at the competition in order to gain valuable competition experience. D+ test standard in the IPC is recommended for this competition.

If you are interested in taking part in Minimus this year, please contact Michael on 0879877077.  Further information about Minimus is available on the new SPC website at


The Pony Club Tetrathlon provides Members with a challenging competition - requiring sound practical horsemanship and general athletic ability.

In Tetrathlon, runners go off at one minute intervals over a carefully measured course and each competitor’s time is measured.  Distances vary from 3000m for Open/Senior boys and girls to 1500m for juniors 

Riding Phase:
The riding phase usually takes place over fixed cross country fences. Where possible Tetrathlon courses always include a gate to open and close whilst mounted, and a slip rail at which the competitor dismounts, takes down the rail, leads his pony or horse through, replaces the rail and remounts. Tetrathlon courses should test the ability of the rider rather than that of the mount, Maximum heights are 1.05m for seniors and 90cms for juniors. 

Competitors will score points according to how far they have swum in a certain time.  Competitors should swim in heats, the number in each heat depending on the width of the pool.
Open Boys- 4 minutes
Open Girls- 3 minutes
All Intermediate and Junior Competitors- 3 minutes

This phase uses any make of single shot 4.5mm calibre air rifle (Junior) pistol (Senior) and Pony Club Targets. Competitors each have 5 shots fired consecutively with a time limit at each target. There is a maximum of 2 targets per competition.

For further information, see the SPC website at
Details of upcoming events for all other pony club competitions are available on the IPC website.

If you are interested in finding out more or are considering training for either Minimus or Tethrathlon please contact Michael at  087 9877077.



  • 12th: Fundraiser - Beach Ride and BBQ
  • TBC: Showjumping Event - venue TBC
  • 25th: Inter Schools Hunter Trials


  • 22nd: IPC Hunter Trial Championships - Annaharvey


  • 17th/18th: IPC Minimus Championships - Punchestown
  • 24th IPC National Dressage Day - Spruce Lodge


  • 3rd - 8th July - Pony Camp will take place at Butterfly Farm 
  • 28th - 30th - IPC Festival - Mullingar Equestrian Centre


  • 19th/20th  - IPC Eventing Championships
  • 25th - 27th - IPC Tetrathlon Championships


Committee Member contact details
 Deirdre O'Brien    Membership Secretary / Treasurer    087 674 0317
 Patricia Doyle    Event Secretary    087 792 1474
 Kate Reynolds    District Commissioner    085 718 9488
Warren Furlong    Asst. District Commissioner    087 263 7246
Nicola Hobson   Dressage  (087) 605 4956
Susan Shaw    Child Welfare Officer    089 223 7761
Mairead O'Hara   Showjumping Committee    087 9285188
Michael O'Brien    Tetrathalon / Minimus Training    087 9877077
John & Mary Walsh    Mounted Games Trainers    087 2468907
Bob Kinsella    Games - Senior B Trainer    087 2718860
Brid Kavanagh    Camp Secretary    086 858 7623
John Driver    Games    087 7790872
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