horsescotland Awards 2017

horsescotland Awards 2017

The horsescotland Annual Awards recognise and reward the hard work of Scotland’s equestrian coaches, volunteers, performers, clubs, equine breeders, the equestrian business community, employees, photographers and those that have made outstanding contributions to the equestrian community in Scotland.

This year we received a record number of nominations showing the hard work and dedication made across the entire Scottish equestrian community. 

All nominations were considered and after much deliberation from our voting panel, the nominees were scored against and the winners decided, with the Equestrian Photo of the Year being shortlisted and voted for by the public via Facebook.  This all led to very close competition.

The hugely deserving award winners were announced at the sparkling ceremony held at the Westerwood Hotel & Golf Resort, Cumbernauld on Friday 3 March:

  • Equestrian Business of the Year    Rowanlea Riding School
  • Equestrian Photo of the Year:    Emma Cheape
  • Employee of the Year:    Lucy Moss
  • Equine Breeder of the Year:    The Baird Family, The Whitefield Stud
  • Club of the Year:    Scottish Academies – British Showjumping
  • Volunteer of the Year:    Maureen and Neil McLeod
  • Youth Coach of the Year:    Kirsty McWilliam
  • Performance Coach of the Year    Gail Smith
  • Participation Coach of the Year    Sandra Low-Mitchell
  • Performer of the Year:     Robyn Smith
  • Lifetime Achievement    Jacky and late husband Dugald Low-Mitchell


During the evening a Gillian Elliott, horsescotland Director was also presented with her UKCC Level 4 qualification after becoming the first Scottish Coach to achieve this level when she completed her course in November 2016.

Doddie Weir, Scottish Rugby Legend was the keynote speaker for the evening.  He spoke about his experiences with horses and the fact that before he took up rugby he wanted to ride for a living. Recognisable in his tartan suit he kept the audience entertained with his anecdotes about his rugby days and his own physical charecterisitcs, comparing his height to many of those in the room.

Patrick Print OBE FBHS, Chair of horsescotland, summarised the awards ceremony when saying:

“The horsescotland awards 2017 were a fantastic opportunity for the equestrian community to come together and celebrate Scotland’s substantial equestrian success over the last 12 months. I would like to thank everyone who came along and made it a real night to remember and offer my sincere thanks to our sponsors Wades Print and our principal partner sportscotland – the national agency for sport, Doddie Weir for a fantastic speech, as well as the new EQY Magazine for providing a photographer.


horsescotland will continue to drive forward a number of exciting programmes and initiatives in the year ahead and will work closely with its member bodies and key stakeholders to put in place a world-class system for Scottish equestrianism that ensures the welfare of the horse.”


Billy Bell, Chief Operating Officer of horsescotland, added:

“Much of the success of our riders, drivers and vaulters is down to the quality of the coaches and the commitment of the thousands of volunteers whose efforts are invaluable. The horsescotland awards create the perfect stage to recognise and reward the contribution of Scotland’s equestrian coaches, volunteers, performers, clubs, equine breeders and equestrian business community.”