In November 2023, our horse yard, Petersham Farm Stables in Richmond, closed. After almost 10 years there, we had to move him to another yard. I searched around, and after many long family conversations, we decided it was best for him to retire and return to Belgium on a field where my sister could look after him.
Being the do-it-yourself type of person, my sister and I decided we would transport ourselves. We have a small truck that my parents bought when I did European Championships, and we thought we would give it a go. I called an old family friend, asked her for advice on how she moves her horses in and out of the UK post-Brexit and got a company name.
I reached out and got them to organise the paperwork. This already was quite a laborious job. First of all, the vet had to come for a Coggins blood test. This is valid for 90 days, so the vet arrived. Tested him, and the blood work showed he was good to go. Or so we thought. Then, after they had seen his passport, it said that he was a stallion, but for as long as we had Didi, he has always been a gelding. Here, it gets unbelievable what has been treating him for the last 7 years. I couldn't write a note without coming to examine him. Many pounds later, it came time for the final vet to finish the paperwork and prepare his health certificate. Finally, he was good to travel.
Follow along for the next chapter in the horse export saga.