We are very proud to host the Holmestead Saddlery All Ireland Interschools Hunter Trials 2016 at Lisgarvan House, Ballon, Co. Carlow on Saturday 12th March 2016.

PRIZE WINNERS & RESULTS (updated 19.58 14/3/16)

PHOTO GALLERY (updated 11am 16/3/16)


December 23, 2015

2016 Holmestead All Ireland Schools Hunter Trials launched by Bertram Allen

Colaiste Bhride, Carnew, today launched the 2016 Holmestead All Ireland Schools’ Hunter Trials with popular showjumper Bertram Allen. Bertram currently stands at number 6 in the world showjumping league, is a native of Wexford and a former competitor of Interschools competions.

Mags Heffernan, managing director of Holmestead Saddlery was on hand to launch the prestigious competition, along with fellow sponsor Wriggle which the leading mobile learning specialist for schools in Ireland. Wriggle was represented by Christina Clarkin. Kildare Wicklow Education Training Board (KWETB) is the third main sponsor.

Linda Dunne, principal of Colaiste Bhride, thanked Bertram for agreeing to launch the national competition. ‘To have achieved so much in one so young is an inspiring and wonderful triumph,’ said Linda. ‘We have watched his swift progress with interest and we are very grateful for Bertram to take time out of his busy international schedule to launch this important All Ireland competition. We look forward to seeing more young hopefuls follow his footsteps and go on to compete at national and international levels.’

Holmestead Saddlery’s owner, Bill Holmes, was very happy to be a key sponsor for the 2016 Holmestead Hunter Trials. ‘We always like to associate ourselves with quality products and events and by joining with Colaiste Bhride we are continuing that tradition. At Holmestead we strive to encourage your people to take part at every level of the sport.

‘The competition promises to be as exciting as ever and we look forward to witnessing the future champions of the sport,’ he said.

Wriggle’s Director, Beryl Furlong, said: ‘As a provider of digital educational tools to schools across the whole of Ireland we are delighted to sponsor the All Ireland Schools’ competition where physical and intellectual skills are of paramount importance.

‘Wriggle promotes teamwork and collaboration in the classroom which is reflected with the teams competing on the day,’ she said.

This is the first time Colaiste Bhride has been asked to host the national event. The location chosen for the demanding competition is Lisgarvan House, in Ballon, Co Carlow. The date for the event is 12 March 2016.

Entry details can be obtained from cbcarnew.ie and equetraininterschools.com. Closing date will be the beginning of February.

Over the past 35 years the competition has been keenly contested and is the most eagerly awaited event on the Hunter Trials calendar. There are three competitions on the day: Teams of 3, Senior Singles and Junior Singles and the winners each year are worthy All Ireland Champions.

In 2016 it is expected that more than 500 school children will take part from more than 100 schools across the country.

Colaiste Bhride, formed eighty years ago next year, has a strong equestrian tradition as befits its largely rural community. In recent years the school’s equestrian teams have competed in Hickstead in the UK, winning rosettes and have also been the ‘school to beat’ in the strong Schools’ Show Jumping competition, winning multiple times in the past ten years.

The All Ireland Schools’ Hunter Trials was conceived in the early 1980s as the brainchild of a small group of dedicated people; two of the original founders, Martin Kavanagh and Mrs Cairns, are still actively involved. The first event was held on the lands of Martin Kavanagh and was hosted by CBS New Ross with Rockwell College the first winners of the trophy.

The competition stayed in the New Ross area hosted by local schools for the next ten years, with Laurel Hill Limerick travelling some distance and winning on three separate occasions. By 1986 a national association was established (NAST) with John Roberts as chairman and a working committee of 15 people. The event became national and over the next 29 years was hosted by schools in Kilkenny. Tipperary, Westmeath, Limerick, Waterford, Wexford, Carlow, Dublin and Laois. The National Committee sanctions the host school at its AGM, approves the selected course and is responsible for applying the rules under which the competition is run. The committee also regulates the entry fees and present the perpetual trophies on the day of the event.

The school is gathering a range of very impressive prizes from national sponsors and there will also be advertising opportunities available.

For more information, please contact Linda Dunne, Principal lindadunne@kwetb.ie or Mary Rothwell, co-ordinator maryrothwell@kwetb.ie