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News from Chester Farm

Make sure you check out our EVENTS CALENDAR
to see what is coming up at Chester Farm!

Further details on events can be found on our Events Calendar page.

Did You Miss Chester Farm on Country Calendar Live? View Now On Demand! - July 2017
If you missed watching the episode on Chester Farm on Country Calendar live on TV, you can still watch it online On Demand via your smart phone or computer by following this link and downloading the app:
Go to Country Calendar website by clicking on this link (you will then need to scroll down the page to see our Episode #23 called "Horse Talk").

We would like to say a HUGE THANKYOU to TVNZ, Hyundai Country Calendar, director Richard Langston, camera man Steve Fisher, sound man Kevin Hill, our families, friends and everyone else for who helped support and take part in the amazing experience of being on this iconic Kiwi show. We were very happy with the way the programme was put together and have been blown away by the overwhelming positive response and feedback we have received afterwards. It was a real privledge to be able to share our farm and lifestyle, horse training ideas and the stunning Maratoto Valley with the rest of NZ! Thankyou!!

TVNZ Country Calendar Screening Date Set for 23rd July 2017
We have now been given the screening date for our exciting little piece of TV time: Sunday 23rd July at 7pm on TVNZ1, the iconic Country Calendar will be featuring Chester Farm and showcasing the beautiful Maratoto Valley! We don't get given any sneak previews of the show before it goes to air so it will be just as exciting / daunting for us to watch it as anyone! Make sure you tune in to see what we get up to here on the farm and spot any of your friends and family who attended the lessons, camp and jumping competition during filming.

Country Calendar comes to Chester Farm
Exciting News! Chester Farm coming soon on Country Calendar!
TVNZ1, Sunday 23rd July at 7pm.

Country Calendar Comes To Chester Farm! - March 2017
While our everyday news is shared on the Chester Farm Facebook page these days, there is occasionally some news that is just too exciting to miss sharing here on our website with our non-Facebook users too!

Spectacular film scenes while long-reining a young horse through the overflowing ford.

Country Calendar came to Chester Farm in the middle of March 2017 and spent an amazing 5 days here filming our life with horses on the farm - WOW!!!! Such an exciting (and a bit overwhelming / scary!) experience, we feel so proud and honoured to have been given this opportunity to be involved on this iconic Kiwi TV show. It was a jam packed 5 days involving our daily life and routines on the farm, as well as a riding clinic and camp, Contact CARE therapy, the Paddock Groomer invention and a showjumping competition.

Greg working with Rochelle and "Mikey" on the arena while the film crew look on.

The Country Calendar crew were all fantastic to work with and helped us feel more comfortable in front of the cameras as the days went by. The weather gods were also on our side and we all enjoyed 5 days of magnificent sunshine to help show off the farm and the beautiful Maratoto Valley at it's finest.

The film crew Kevin, Steve and Richard from Country Calendar, with Greg and Diana from Chester Farm.

Here are a few more photos from behind the scenes during filming.

Horses getting up close and personal with the film crew, while Diana gets interviewed in front of the camera.

No Chester Farm camp is complete without a fun river swim! Good fun after lessons on a hot day.

Greg chats about the group lessons, Diana and Pat judge the Showjumping competition.

Steve and Richard discuss best angles and scenery above the Derby paddock.

Dates of TV viewing are yet to be confirmed but we have been informed it will probably air on TVNZ Country Calendar in August 2017. Thankyou so much to TVNZ and Country Calendar, as well as the fantastic group of people and horses who came and took part during the week.
Keep an eye on the Country Calendar website and Facebook pages
and stay tuned here for more details!!!

Email Database
Click here to signup to our email database so you can recieve first notification of latest news and coming events here at Chester Farm.

March 2014
We are now writing all of our regular news and events on our Facebook page, so please go there and LIKE and FOLLOW our Facebook page so you can be kept up to date with current news and happenings at Chester Farm -

January 2014
HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYBODY! We hope you and your horses have all been making the most of the summer weather up and down the country, as well as spending any holiday time with family and friends. Yes we are still alive, it has been a hectic finish to 2013 and a super busy start to 2014 - but that seems to just be the way we roll around here, especially at this time of year!!

We have been busy breaking in some lovely horses over the last few months, many well bred warmbloods coming into work for the first time under saddle and progressing well. It is neat to see owners and horses learning to form a bond together in both groundwork and ridden, gaining new skills to help them go home with both the tools and the confidence to progress with success once they go home together.

We've also been out and about with our own horses on the competition circuit - Greg having some excellent consistent results jumping Grand Prix level 1.45m with warmblood stallion Vollrath Chagall including a superb win at Woodhill Sands in the 1* Grand Prix on December 1st following an exciting class and jump-off. This is Charlie's 2nd Grand Prix win and included a flash cover to add to his extensive wardrobe!
Diana's two Hanoverian/TB mares, the full sisters Astek Gianni and Astek Gymbya, have been out to several shows this season too and jumping very well, Diana loving being back at the competitions this year. Gianni has made a return to the showjumping ring after several years competing solely in showhunter and really thriving on the new challenge! Younger sister, the flashy chestnut Gymbya has been greatly impressing out and about, making her competition debut this year. With wins and placings from almost every class entered to date, she is currently leading the Waitemata Low Hunter series on 25 points, final show of series on 1st and 2nd Feb.

We've had some fantastic riding clinics and camps here over the last few months, heaps of new faces arriving to see what Chester Farm is all about and going home with
awesome progress, good memories and many new friends made.
Due to demand, we have just scheduled another 2 day clinic on the 15th and 16th February - see Events page for further details and booking form.

And last but not least, through February we also have our summer Twilight Jumping series set to commence again on the 4th Feb and run for the following 3 Tuesday evenings, with the final prizegiving on the 25th Feb. Judged showjumping classes from 60cms to 1m, as well as a fun Mini Hunter Derby course available. More awesome prizes will be up for grabs to the Top 10 showjumping series winners so we look forward to seeing good turnouts at these nights - although these evenings are alot of work to organise and run, we see this as a great way to give something back to the community and provide a friendly yet professional competition series for local riders of all ages to take part in and enjoy. So we'll see you here on the 4th! Download the info flyer on our Events page.

While we will endeavour to continue to place reasonably regular news updates here on our website through this busy season, if you are interested in keeping up with latest news and events from Chester Farm, we suggest you LIKE and follow our Facebook page -


September / October 2013
If there is no rest for the wicked, then we must have really bad this winter!!! Lots of things are going on at the farm these days with very few moments spare to sit down and reflect on it all.

Horses in training have been making the usual good steady progress in their work, in amongst the occasional day off due to some very turbulent storms that have passed over us recently. We had 2 trees down after very strong winds in one storm, but no damage or injury anywhere else which is always a great relief. On good days horses have been enjoying some lovely hacks out down the road, in the river and up the bush tracks... it's always such a pretty time of year as the trees start to sprout new leaves again.

Two 4 year old mares go for a ride at Chester Farm during their breaking in and early training under saddle. Oct 2013

September saw us run two riding clinics due to early spring demand from riders keen to get into it again after winter. Greg held a Showhunter clinic 31st August and 1st September which was a nice small friendly clinic to start the season off. Those riders who had taken part in our showhunter clinics late Autumn and continued their training throughout the winter really showed some good improvement, and the riders new to showhunter went home with a great understanding of the sport and appreciation of just how difficult it really is to acheive that perfect round!
Diana ran an Adults Confidence Booster Clinic 7th and 8th September which was well received by a group of keen horse owners and riders looking for help and not sure where to go next with their young horses, problem horses or adults looking to gain more skills and confidence for general everyday horse riding and handling. A couple of problem horses on the clinic made enormous improvements over the weekend, again reiterating the fact that most problems under saddle need to be first addressed and fixed via groundwork before starting work on the horses back. Diana thrives of the challenge of working with these horses and loves seeing adults improve and enjoy what horses can offer us. Her calm, approachable demeanour mixed with practical advice and simple methods saw everyone learning alot and going home with renewed confidence and many new skills and exercises both groundwork and ridden to put into practise over the coming months.

Our Spring Into Action 3 day clinic and camp held October 4th - 6th was full and busy, with lessons running from 7.30am till 6.30pm and involving a wide range of ages, skills and levels. From the cheeky group of young riders all proudly accomplishing riding a full jumping course over lots of newly painted walls and fillers, to young horses and inexperienced horse/rider combinations working on their groundwork and flatwork skills, through to competitive showjumpers looking to hone in on their techniques and ringcraft for the coming competition season. It was a great 3 days with excellent weather throughout and people attending from all over including Taupo, Tokoroa, Whitianga, Whangarei and Hamilton.

With the first of our Spring Twilight Jumping series nights starting on Tuesday 8th October, we offered for any clinic attendees to stay on for the extra nights and put their clinic learnings into practise in a competition setting. A great crowd of people turned up with 22 riders attending the first jumping night including many locals and others from further afield making the effort to come along, join in the fun and see if they could get their names on the board for the series points prizes. We again have some fantastic prizes up for grabs to the Top 10 Showjumping series winners including polar fleece cover, leather halters, rope halters, 3 bags of horse feed, lesson discount vouchers and more. Our thanks to Farmlands Paeroa (Brian McMillan) and Riverside Equestrian (Diane Mumford) for their generous donations and support of this local series.
Keep an eye on our Facebook page for latest series results and photos from the Twilight Series -

July / August 2013
As I write this we have spent the last few days wearing t-shirts while working the horses and about a week ago I was surprised to see the first green leaf sprouting on one of the willow trees in the horse paddocks. Now the willows are a definite shade of lime green as sweet new leaves appear allover. The later season poplars on the farm have only just lost the last of their 2012 summer leaves, meanwhile the earlier variety poplar trees are covered in buds and showing some bright green leaves sprouting already now too. How exciting to think that spring really is coming early this year! The farm certainly has amazing grass growth on it for this time of year, the young dairy heifers are looking great and haven't needed any of their usual supplementary feed this winter.

On the horsey front, we have had a very busy winter with a full house right through, mostly young horses for breaking in but also some older horses here for further mileage, jump schooling and bringing back into work for their owners. A couple of repeat visitors returned for training while their lucky owners headed off on their annual winter holidays overseas. This is a great option for owners who are keen to have their horses up and going in the early spring ready for the coming season but due to going on holidays, work committments and short daylight hours, struggle to put any regular work into their horses.

We have some very nice youngsters in work that are being offered for sale by their owners at the moment, quality horses with good movement and coming along very well in their work under saddle. Contact us for more info.

Molly heads out down the road for a ride with Diana,
July 2013

Left: 3yo Warmblood colt Halo in the river. Right: Astek Galavera explores the local fords on the longreins.
August 2013.

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