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How Elvis found success in Grantham

A horse found underweight and suffering neglect is now transformed thanks to the hard work and dedication of rehomer, Emma Hopkinson.

Emma, who lives in Carlton Scroop, near Grantham, has previously kept former racehorses and took ‘Elvis’ in as a ‘project horse’ from the charity World Horse Welfare a year ago this weekend.

Elvis came into World Horse Welfare’s care in the summer of 2012 after he was underweight, suffering from overgrown feet and clearly not receiving the care he so desperately needed.

He underwent rehabilitation at World Horse Welfare’s Hall Farm, near Norwich, before being rehomed as a youngster and then later returned to one of the charity’s other Rescue and Rehoming Centres, Glenda Spooner Farm, in Devon, due to a change in his rehomer’s circumstances.

Emma explains how she found him: “I’ve always had project horses and was looking for a new one but it was actually my other half who spotted Elvis on World Horse Welfare’s website and was instantly drawn to his kind eyes. We made the trip down to Somerset to meet him and fell in love straightaway. Following our home check, we arranged transport and he came to live with me.

“We started slowly as he was so early in his ridden training but it quickly became clear that Elvis had great potential and so we started doing some dressage competitions, which is not Elvis’ natural forte but he still enjoyed himself. We then moved on to some showjumping and going out on the cross country course, and this year we’ve been competing in BE80-affiliated eventing competitions and he absolutely loves it.”

Soon Elvis will move to Dovecote Farm at Orston, near Bottesford, a farm Emma knows from teaching horse riding there for many years and doing livery there.

“I know everybody there,” continued Emma, who works for Essity, which sells cleaning products to the NHS.

Emma has competed with Elvis at many events and rides him once or twice a week. Aged seven, Elvis is still young and is taking a break before competing at local and national events again.

The 41-year-old recommends people rehome horses from World Horse Welfare, be they for companionship or eventing. The charity offers much support and advice, and will take back horses if circumstances change or things don’t work out.

Emma advises: “Don’t just look at the horses as they are now, but imagine what they could become in the future. Elvis had only just started his education when he came to me and he’s achieved amazing things since then. If I had to describe him as an Elvis song, it certainly wouldn’t be ‘Return to Sender’.”

Last month, World Horse Welfare celebrated its Rehome a Horse Month. The charity has more than 1,800 horses and ponies out in loving homes around the country and more than 100 looking for new homes at any time.

Go to www.worldhorsewelfare.org/rehoming for details.

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