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The Horse Exchange - How it all began...


I have been deeply involved with horses and ponies all my life. As a child living in Cheshire, England, I was an active member of the Pony Club and spent every available opportunity during the winter months hunting.

On leaving school I spent a year in Eire. My first experience of their horse world was taking twelve, four-year-old horses to Dublin Horse Show, to compete in their respective classes and then be sold. We came back with an empty lorry and my belief that ' a horse well placed is a horse well sold ' was manifested after this experience.

The rest of my stay in Ireland was spent in a yard that bought and sold, produced top class show hunters and ponies and liveried high class hunters in the winter for their American owners. My employees daughter represented Eire in Showjumping and her Grade A's were our pride and joy.

On returning to England the racing world became my life for the next 14 years. Firstly as a trainers secretary and then as a trainers wife. I rode out every morning, went racing at least 4 days per week and attended yearling sales in England, Ireland and America. I studied all the T.B pedigrees listed in the sales catalogue and acquired a sound knowledge of the way thoroughbreds were prepared for sale and how the professional sales companies operated.

My husband trained for owner breeders and so we often visited their thoroughbred studs. It was always fascinating seeing the mares and their latest offspring and comparing them to the older brother or sister that was already in training. The genetic faults that so often came through and the future breeding plans that just might produce a Classic winner.

My children all have a keen interest in the equine world my eldest has competed in BHS Events and as a teenager was long-listed for the FEI Pony Team. Apart from the Flat and National Hunt winners, I have personally produced winners of many types of competitions including Teamchases, Showing, Working Hunter /Pony. ODE's, Hunter Trials, Dressage, Showjumping, Prince Philip Games, but I only managed second place in a Point-to-Point!

My late father bred Welsh Section B ponies and his ponies are still competing successfully both at local and top class level. He always put temperament as his absolute priority when trying to breed the perfect child's pony and he succeeded time and time again.

I have been putting friends and acquaintances in touch with each other for both buying and selling horses and ponies for many years. I have always believed that the 'grapevine' was the safest method of finding a horse or pony and I am now putting this grapevine onto the Internet. I have never charged for my efforts – but the wonderful letters and telephone calls have given me the incentive to help people that I do not necessarily know, to benefit from this system.

My aim is to eliminate horses and ponies that are not suited to your needs by giving you an in depth study of each entry. Integrity is of enormous importance and the success of The Horse Exchange is entirely dependent on satisfied customers who have bought horses and ponies suited to their needs. The site is not intended as a dumping ground for stock that has failed to sell elsewhere and will be monitored carefully.

Our mission is to give you an in depth study of each entry. This inevitably means that the amount of information we ask you for when placing your "free classified ad" is fairly extensive and will take quite a few minutes of your time to put on. We believe that good, in depth, information is a very important part of the process of buying and selling and we take that process extremely seriously. It can save hours of time later on, not to mention the money, anxiety etc...

So to those of you who are simply wanting to give the minimum details about the horse or pony you are selling and are not prepared to spend 10 minutes or so of your time filling in the advertising form with valuable information about your horse - then this site is not for you.

We will constantly be checking on entries to ensure that they are as described and ask each seller to check on each purchaser and satisfy themselves that they would benefit from the horse or pony concerned before proceeding with a sale. A horse well placed is a horse well sold….

I hope you enjoy the site. I have tried to make it as user friendly as possible, but if you feel that there are areas that I could improve on, please let me Know. Any type of feedback is tremendously useful, so don't be shy...

My eternal thanks go to my husband Nick, who has sorted the technical stuff and made this site possible.

Thank You.

Emma Higgin