News and views 

Report from Council Meeting held on the 13th of October 2014

As this report is being written, thousands of people are flocking to Builth Wells for their annual pilgrimage to the Cob Sales - the Fayre Oaks Sale has already attracted similar numbers of Welsh Pony enthusiasts. These events confirm the international popularity of our wonderful Welsh breeds.
The minutes of the council meetings held on 11th August 2014 and 15th September 2014 were confirmed and can be viewed here.
HOYS proved to be a huge success for the Welsh breeds, their part breds and their exhibitors. The staff who manned the stand at HOYS are to be congratulated on a splendid achievement. Placing the stand in the shopping area at HOYS proved to be very popular with both members and non-members alike in the promotion of the Welsh breeds. Ceri Fell and Jacky Kirk were thanked for all their efforts in helping the Promotions committee and staff.
Council confirmed the details of parentage verification for the future. In 2014 the number of foals randomly tested has been doubled with every 300th foal being required to be DNA tested. From 2014 an additional condition of the licensing of fully registered colts as stallions will be that their DNA be compatible with that of their registered sires. From 1st January 2016, for full registration, foals who are the first fully registered progeny of their dams will have as a condition of their registration that their dams will be required to be DNA profiled. These details can also be found on the Society’s website at the following link.
The Open Forums were discussed. The one to be held in Scotland has attracted a good number of people signalling their intention to attend. However, the Lancaster Forum, with very few registered attendees, will be cancelled. The Members Services Committee will review the forums and, after consultation, may well look at a slightly different format perhaps involving the Area Associations.
Arrangements were confirmed for the Judges’ Assessment to be held at Hartpury College on 25th October 2014. Again the Judging and Showing Committee will review the Assessment after feedback. The Education and Welfare Committee are now advertising for a Voluntary Area Welfare Representative and a Voluntary National Welfare Coordinator. Information on these posts can be found here.
Meanwhile the educational visits to colleges are proving very popular, with many such visits booked by colleges throughout the winter.
The Animals in War Service is held in London on the Friday before Remembrance Day every year. On being approached, the organisers have invited the Welsh Pony and Cob Society to participate. The Society’s representatives at the service will lay a wreath in memory of all the Welsh Ponies and Cobs who have died in war related activities.
Council agreed to apply for outline planning permission for a new WPCS pavilion on the Royal Welsh showground at a cost much less than previously estimated. It is recognised that the pavilion will have to meet the requirements of our charitable status.
We are extremely grateful for the input of Gary Atkinson in the consultations with Peter Cooper, the Society’s IT facilitator, which will achieve a much needed major upgrade/enhancement in the Society’s IT systems. Council had a progress update, and members will hopefully already be seeing some improvements in customer service through courtesy emails. We hope that members continue to supply us with their email details which will improve efficiency and lower costs dramatically. By the 2015 AGM we hope to have an ‘on-line’ Member and Registered Users Area as well as an enhanced office system.
Members have received the autumn mailing of the magazine, so ably edited by David Blair. As well as David we must thank Bethan and her colleagues for beating their own deadline in producing and posting out all the material to the membership. Hopefully members will use the opportunity to nominate and vote for a selection of roles: President–Elect 2015, Honorary Life Members and Honorary Vice Presidents and of course Trustees.
Finally, the President-Elect, Mr Dai Harris, disclosed that the 2016 AGM will be held on Saturday 2nd April 2016 at The Vale Resort, Vale of Glamorgan, which is less than 15 minutes from the centre of Cardiff.
23rd Oct 2014