Solway Dressage Inc works with Wairarapa Dressage Group to encourage riders of all levels to become involved with dressage in the Wairarapa. Solway Dressage has around 50 members.
Solway Dressage runs a number of non-graded competitions during the year. The schedule is on the Events page.
Solway Dressage also runs monthly rallies at the Solway Showgrounds from 10am – 1pm. Riders are able to use our all-weather arena and participate in instruction where provided. These rallies are the perfect opportunity for riders to bring out their young and green horses in a quiet and informal environment. Members and non-members are welcome.
Rally dates are available on the Events Page.
The Solway Dressage Membership Form is available on the Forms Page. The membership fee for 2017/18 is $25 per annum, $10 for riders 18 years and under, and $5 for non-riding members.
Committee members for 2017/18 are:
- President – Katie Jones
- Vice Presidents – Suz Halligan and Amber McGovern-Wilson
- Secretary – Lynn Lamb
- Treasurer – Ann Webster
- Committee members – Wendy Jeffery, Trish Furness, Alison Woollard, Ian Childs
Solway Dressage’s History (kindly provided by Lynn Lamb)
Some 30 years ago, Jan White, a member of the Southern Hawkes Bay Dressage Group, moved to the Wairarapa and soon realised that very few riders competed in dressage. She called a meeting at her Gladstone home and Wairarapa Dressage (its original name) was formed.
The main aim was to encourage riders to try dressage. Rallies were first held at Mr and Mrs Ron Campbell’s Paireau Road and Mr and Mrs Doug Lamb’s Kaituna properties. Outside instructors were invited and those with a little knowledge were expected to help. Numbers soon grew and we later shifted to the Clareville all-weather lime arena and their undercover facility. From there we moved to our present home, Solway Showgrounds, where in 1998 we had enough funds to put in our own 20mx 60m all-weather arena. This was upgraded to an improved surface in 2006.
At first there was no intention of holding tournaments, but this did happen and in later years ribbon days were added with special classes for “green” horses and riders which proved very popular. We have now gone full circle and will concentrate on ribbon days which are more in line with our aim to encourage dressage.
One memorable occasion was in 1982. We were invited by the Masterton A & P Association to perform a musical ride at their show. Little knowing what if would entail, we accepted. Practice commenced at Solway Showgrounds with 14 riders, with several pulling out as they soon realised the time involved. The ground got harder and we moved to the softer surface at Kaituna where countless summer evenings were spent. All went well on the big day but we had not practiced for the applause that echoed from the grandstand – the horses turned as one and fled! The final team was Lynne Holmes and Ann Kershaw (chestnuts), Pam Nathan and Raewyn Clapham (deceased) (bays), Robyn Walker and Donna Candy (bays), Tina Holmes (deceased) and Pat Lee (whites), Jenny Draper and Lynn Lamb (blacks). Ginny Thurston acted as prompt.
For those who stayed the distance, it’s been fun!