New home and name for Horse Sunday

Rev Godfrey Hirst, the former vicar of Lytham known as the Cantering Canon
Rev Godfrey Hirst, the former vicar of Lytham known as the Cantering Canon
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Fylde’s traditional Horseman’s Sunday will have a new title as well as a new home when it celebrates its 21st anniversary next month.

At the core of the event is the blessing of horses by former vicar of Lytham Canon Godfrey Hirst.

After being held at a variety of locations over the last two decades, including Wrea Green and latterly Penny Farm at Peel, its new home is the grounds of Lytham Hall and it takes place on Sunday, September 18 from 1 to 3pm.

Canon Hirst, fondly known as the Cantering Canon, said: “It will be now be known as the Festival of the Horse and we are broadening the scope of the event.It will include the traditional components of Horseman’s Sunday, but hopefully also groups, societies, breeds and associations which have not previously been represented.

“We are thrilled that the executive committee of Lytham Hall have given permission to hold the event at this most prestigious venue, that Lorraine Matta, a local businesswoman with a keen interest in equestrain pursuits, is to be the president of the Festival, Mark Menzies MP to be its patron, the Bishop of Burnley to give the address at the service and Freckleton Brass Band to provide the music.”

Entry is free for all and each horse, after receiving the traditional blessing, will be given a commemorative rosette.

The best-turned out horse will be awarded the silver Stirrup Cup.

Marianne Blaauboer, activity plan officer at ther Hall, said: “We are delighted to be the new venue for the Festival of the Horse and look forward to a successful day.”

Details from Lytham Hall on (01253) 736652.