Hickstead prepares arena for new season

Mowing the new turf Picture John Periam
Mowing the new turf Picture John Periam

HICKSTEAD is preparing for its new season, when new turf in its famous International Arena will be put to the test at four major events during the season.

The decision to replace the turf was taken after the venue celebrated its 50th anniversary last year.

After extensive research it was decided to follow the example of the RDS arena in Dublin, home to the famous Dublin Horse Show.

Soil samples were taken and it was decided to have a similar reconstruction to the Dublin arena.

It involved digging out the whole arena and re-doing the sub draining, with the inclusion of a gravel raft across the whole ring.

The soil was retained and mixed with three different types of sand and then reseeded.

The preparatory work took just over six weeks, having started in early August last year.

Seeding was done in September and the heavy snow falls of last winter are said to have done no damage to the seed at all.

For full story about Hickstead’s plans for the coming season, and more equestrian news, see Sussex Horse World, West Sussex Gazette, May 4