Eastern Region Report

If any member would like to write an article or just tell us about your donkeys for the Ear to Ear newsletter, it would be greatly appreciated. Contact Carole Travell or your local Area Rep.

Latest News

On Saturday 29th June Wisbech held its Rosefair day which included 2 walking parades. With the help of Tom and Debs McKay we included a contingent of Donkeys to join the parades. To say that they were well received would be a massive understatement. Wisbech town fell in love with all the donkeys and the local social media and local newspapers have all gone donkey mad.

They were so successful that the Rosefair committee wants to have them back again next year.    Alan Wheeldon


Fun donkey weekend hosted by Emma Young.

We kicked off Saturday with a walk that had a snack station en route along with a pub lunch before heading back to base for afternoon tea. The evening brought along some additional guests where we all had a good catch up over wood fired pizzas and the odd glass or two!

Sunday we were fuelled by a huge and delicious cooked breakfast, which we walked off on a smaller circular route around the village.
Then came the agility course. Highlights included a life size wooden pig complete with sound effects, a bubble machine and a water crossing with rubber ducks! Some obstacles proved trickier than others. The weekend came to an end after a nice picnic lunch.

Thank you Emma for a wonderful weekend and for all the scrumptious food. We shall be wearing our beautiful felted donkey brooches with pride! Look forward to next year’s one and hopefully draw in some extra guests of the two and four legged varieties! By Emma Capon

Donkey Weekend Photo Gallery


Earwig Farm  Training day

On Sunday 19th May the Eastern Region held a training day at Earwig Farm in Pavenham. The event was open toboth members and non members, who were asked what they would like covered. The

main areas they came back with were: Harness Fitting and Introduction to long reining, general management and agility. With the support of Tom Bysouth, Rob Sims, (harness, longreining), Liz Wright (general management) and myself for the agiliy, we were able to cover everything requested.

The venue owner, Jane Dippolito, very kindly allowed us to use her very well behaved donkeys, Jack and George as demo donks. Kim Durden also brought her two wonderfully behaved donkeys Leonne and Skye, who took everything in their stride and were a credit to her.

The day was relaxed, sociable and great fun with a lovely picnic lunch in the sunshine with lots of donkey chat, as well as a raffle organised by Maggie Tayler.




Show Season So Far

We have now had our first three shows of the Eastern Region season. All were well supported, sociable and friendly events.

First in the calendar was South Suffolk Show at Ingham, just north of Bury St Edmunds on Sunday 12th May. The first one is always ‘entertaining’ with lots of chat to catch up on plus youngsters having their first outing. As ever, the crowds were delighted to see the donkeys and a good time was had by all. Judge was Sarah Prior and Champion was Janet Lee’s miniature yearling colt Blue Manor Humphrey Bogart at his first show. This colt was bred by Lorraine Rae and this was his first outing with new owner Janet.  It doesn’t get much better than that!

Second entry in the diary, Sunday 19th May was Hadleigh Farmer’s Show near Ipswich in Suffolk. This is another very friendly show. The showground layout had been slightly changed and the donkeys were in a new ring. Judge was Britt Evans and the positioning of the new ring meant more public around our new collecting ring, pleased to be up close to the donkeys and bombarding us with (very sensible) questions. New exhibitors joined us which is always a huge plus. Champion was Carole Travell’s 2 year old colt, Trinitas Tarly. Several donkeys took part in the end of day Grand Parade in the Main Ring. Tarly collected his trophy and was treated to a round of applause as he trotted past the member’s enclosure. It’s always lovely to have our donkeys appreciated!

Our 3rd show was Herts County, just off Junction 9 of the M1. There were several changes for the donkeys this year, following negotiations with the show organisers. As a result the entry fees were halved, the start time brought forward and the classes held in a new ring, the Countryside Ring, which is much more accessible by the general public. It all worked!  Entry numbers were up and the ring was surrounded by crowds. We also had the DBS Eastern Region stand at ringside. Judge was Lorraine Rae, with commentary by Rob Sims. Again we had new exhibitors, so showing is definitely ‘ on the up’. Champion was Carole Travell’s 2 year old colt Trinitas Tarly.

Our next local show is Suffolk County, on Thursday 30th May, at Ipswich, with Judge Mark Kerr, Classes start at 2:30 pm.

Sunday 25th February, Annette provided the guidance and materials for a felt purple poppy-making creative day.   These could be attached to ribbon on wreaths or tied singularly on bridles/headcollars.  We agreed a future session creating purple/green plaited  browbands could be a separate event.  We all enjoyed the friendly atmosphere, refreshments in the tackroom and afternoon photo opportunity with a lovely patient donkey modelling our wares.    Thank you, Annette, as always for hosting a super-enjoyable day.                                                  Joss Goodchild


Commemorating Animals In War Day 2024
Saturday 24th February, a memorable and emotional morning in sunshine at Jimmy’s Grave in Central Park, Peterborough to commemorate Animals In War Day for the first time.  Eastern members, two perfectly behaved donkeys bedecked in purple sashes, dogs, the general public and Joss’ painting commemorated this special event.  Liz Wright read out four members’ poems and a purple poppy wreath with fitting words was laid.  A lovely friendly gathering at the Park Cafe afterwards with Liz and & Dave Barrett joining us from the South.     (Photos Liz Barrett)





Regional Chairman – Liz Wright – 01354 741538

Regional Delegate to National Council – Joss Goodchild

Eastern Treasurer – David Poole

Eastern Secretary – Carole Travell – 07889 162751

Area Reps (all committee members)

Bedfordshire & Northants:

Tracey Robinson. 07594 657760


Clare Bysouth  – 01442 825879


Liz Wright – 01354 741538


(West) Carole Travell  07889 162715

(East) Jude Pearce, 07814 738408


Maggie Taylor – 07860 876154


Debbi & Tom MacKay  – 07725 999590




Annette Staveley – 01284 830240 



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