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Keith Mott Writes...


Every January every one is looking forward to the C.H.A.S.E. Charity Show and Auction, but this year we had a ‘heart stopping’ scare when there was a ‘bird flu’ out break in Weymouth on the Thursday before the event. We kept logging on to the DEFRA website on the Friday, fully expecting them to stop all the shows as they did in November, but to every ones delight DEFRA decided to just ban bird movement and gatherings in the local area of the out break. At last common sense has prevailed and the C.H.A.S.E. Show, and the BHW Blackpool Show the following week were saved and enjoyed great success. I must say, it was great to have the shows go ahead, but how must John Robilliard and all our Show Racer friends in the West Country feel, having their events cancelled with the out break in November? Pretty dam bad, I would think!


The C.H.A.S.E. Show was held at the Horsham YMCA Football Club and is put on by the Horsham Pigeon Club, under the leadership of Show Secretaries, Gordon and Delia Marsh.  Betty and I recently had the great pleasure of being invited as guests of honour to the Horsham club’s 2007 prize presentation and enjoyed a brilliant evening in the company of these great pigeon people. I consider several pigeon clubs to be very special in our sport and the Horsham RPC is one of them! It’s a quality pigeon club, with quality fanciers and has a good long friendly and family orientated tradition. The club holds the now famous C.H.A.S.E. Charity show every January and have raised thousands of pounds for the children’s hospice at Godalming over the last ten years. It is a good fun day and the lady members of the club put on tea, cakes and sandwiches, for all to enjoy. Delia Marsh holds a Bingo session and Quiz’s in the bar area while the birds are being judged, and these are very popular and add fun to a brilliant day. My seven year old grand daughter, Sasha, came with us to the show again this year and she enjoyed helping Delia with the Bingo and Quiz. Sasha caught our ‘Pedro’ on his mobile ringing his wife for Quiz answers and she reported him to Delia. We had a great laugh over that! Sasha is white pigeon mad and fell in love with Gordon and Delia’s White Logans which were entered in the show. The raffle on the day was massive with prizes donated by most who attended the show, but a special ‘thanks’ must go to ‘Pets Pantry’ of Cranleigh who donated a mountain of pigeon items, including six bags of corn for prizes. Thanks to Darran and Des! A small draft of 2008 gift youngsters were auctioned and helped to push the donation to the C.H.A.S.E. Charity up to a wonderful £1,500 this year. Well done to the Horsham Pigeon Club, on another brilliant effort!


This year’s show saw just under 200 birds entered in the six classes, which were all handled. Class winners were: Old Cocks (Judge: Keith Mott): 1) D. & D. McFadden 2) A. Dann 3) W. Cable 4) D. & D. McFadden: Old Hens (Judge: Phil Mott): 1) D. & D. McFadden 2) J. Tyerman 3) D. & D. McFadden 4) W. Cable: Young Cocks (Judge: Brian Goodwin): 1) D. Gatland 2) D. & D. McFadden 3) J. Tyerman 4) D. & D. McFadden: Young Hens (Judge: Fred Hall): 1) N. Fuller 2) K. Abbott 3) D. & D. McFadden 4) D. & D. McFadden: 400 mile Cock & Hen (Judge: Brian Goodwin): 1) D. & D. McFadden 2) D. Gatland 3) W. Cable 4) J. Tyerman: Eyesign (Judge: Roy Underdown): 1) D. Gatland 2) J. Tyerman 3) D. & D. McFadden 4) D. & D. McFadden. Trophy winners were: Darran & Des McFadden: ‘The Charity Cup’ for Best in Show, ‘The Clare Cup’ for Best Opposite Sex, ‘The 400 Mile Cup’ and ‘Best Points Trophy’ won with 90 points. Doug Gatland won ‘The Fred Mott Memorial Cup’ for Best Young Bird in Show.


Darran and Des McFadden’s birds were really on form and took most of the major honours on the day including BIS and BOS. I judged the Old Cocks class and my winner, a handsome three year old red pied, won Best in Show and Darran tells me he has won many cards racing including twice 1st club. His mother won Best Opposite Sex on the day and she is the McFadden’s outstanding Marcellis / Meuleman strawberry hen, ‘Chloe’s Girl’, and she won the Old Hens class judged by my brother, Phil. I think I’m right in saying, if my memory serves me correctly; he gave this same hen the red card at the C.H.A.S.E., when we judged a few seasons ago! She has won many firsts in the show pen, five firsts racing and is now breeding winner in the stock loft, including the McFadden’s 2006 SMT Combine winner, ‘Sparrow’.


C.H.A.S.E. Children's Hospice Service is dedicated to the support of children who are not expected to reach their 19th birthday. For these children there is, at present, no hope of cure but they and their families still need care and support over the course of the life ahead of them. Ever since 1994 C.H.A.S.E. has been dedicated to the support of life-limited children and their families in Surrey, South-West London and parts of West Sussex. C.H.A.S.E. offers this vital service at no cost to the families 24 hours a day, every day of the year, in whatever way it is needed, emotionally or practically, at home or at Christopher's - the purpose-built children's hospice just outside Guildford. The life-limited children who C.H.A.S.E. supports suffer from a wide variety of conditions, sometimes genetic and often progressively degenerative. This means they need constant care, sometimes for many years, placing an enormous emotional, physical and financial strain on their families. C.H.A.S.E. offers respite and support that helps strengthen families and allows them to give their children the best quality of life. C.H.A.S.E. goes right to the crucial point of need - the home. Dedicated help is given in the family's own home, starting immediately after diagnosis, through bereavement and beyond. This practical and emotional support is provided by a multi­ disciplined and specially trained team of professionals. This support complements existing services from nurses, therapists, social workers and others. ‘Christopher’s’ the purpose-built children’s hospice was designed to provide a home from home, where families can stay or take a much-needed break by allowing the C.H.A.S.E. Care Team to follow their child's routine. Christopher's also creates the opportunity for families to have fun together - that essential ingredient of any childhood. In addition to nine bedrooms, there are several play and therapeutic facilities: hobbies, multi-sensory, computer and soft-play rooms; a teenage den; hydrotherapy pool and Jacuzzi; sensory courtyard and outdoor play area. Christopher's provides families with time and space to make the most of the precious time with their life-limited child. With its atmosphere of warmth and welcome, Christopher's provides a safe place to rest and recharge.


The Horsham Club is currently celebrating its 60th year, being formed in 1947, with founder members including Dave Francis, Jim Sweet-Escott and Henry Light, grandfather of the club’s present secretary, Adam Light. In the early days the club basketed their birds at the goods inwards bay at Horsham Station as they went to the race points by train and the clocks were set at a near by pub called ‘The Bedford’. When pigeon road transport came in the club moved its H.Q. to a pub. One the club’s earliest members is Ralph Foreman, who is in his 80th year and he still comes to the club on marking and checking nights, with his son, Peter, who is a current member. The club has been at the YMCA Football Club for approx. 30 years and enjoys the first class facilities there, including a nice bar and hall to hold their prize presentation and pigeon shows. I’m told that member have up some good performances through the years, including three times 1st open London & South East Classic Club, 1st Section NFC, 1st Kent & Sussex Palamos BBC and many premier positions in the Federation and Combine.

Darran McFadden and his father, Des, were the Godalming club’s premier prize winners in 2007, winning a wonderful list of position in the Surrey Federation and SMT Combine. I will be doing a full report on the partner’s recent successes in next week’s ‘ON THE ROAD’. I can be contacted on telephone number: 01372 463480. See yer!




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