Opera singer and actress Shân Cothi led nearly 60 horse riders on a 12 mile trek after a unique ‘Blessing of the Horse' ceremony held in Brecon Beacons National Park on Sunday.
It was a case of all horses great and small with nearly 60 horses (ranging from tiny Shetlands to Thoroughbreds) and their riders attending the ceremony at Tregoyd Mountain Riders, near Three Cocks which was conducted by Reverend Alan Jevons.
The unique blessing is held annually in the Brecon Beacons and this year the event raised more than £500 for the Amser Justin Time charity, founded by Shân Cothi in memory of her husband Justin Smith's fight against pancreatic cancer.
Supported by the British Horse Society and Brecon Beacons National Park Authority, the ceremony finished with a 12 mile trek taking in magnificent views of Hay Bluff and the Brecon Beacons National Park.
Speaking after the event, Shân Cothi said: "I'd like to say a special thank you to Jan Roche and Jeanne Hyatt and the hard working members of the British Horse Society for not only organising a great day with stunning scenery but for raising over £500 for the Amser Justin Time Charity. I'd also like to say a special thank you to Haydn Jones at Tregoyd Mountain Riders for the escort and the warm welcome. Reverend Alan Jevons blessing of the horses was a truly special moment to end the ride."
Carol Williams, Tourism Growth Area Officer for Brecon Beacons National Park Authority said: "This is our third annual ‘Blessing of the Horse' and with over 100 people attending it's fast becoming one of the most popular equine events in the National Park.
"We have a wonderful working relationship with the British Horse Society who has helped us over the years produce riding publications, new access and circular routes and we are looking forward to next year's blessing on the 12thSeptember 2010.
"Riders who want to bring their horses on holiday in Brecon Beacons National Park are guaranteed a warm welcome and an unforgettable riding experience. The best thing about these new routes is that even non-riders are able to appreciate riding these routes by booking a guided trek at one of the many excellent trekking centres in the area."