Volunteering / DAKS Award

The Friends of DAKS Award, was instigated by DAKS to recognise the many unsung volunteers who have quietly dedicated a lifetime of service and devotion within The Pony Club.

The 2016 reciptient is: Beryl Millam

Born in Liverpool, Beryl Millam moved South in her late teens and quickly became involved with The Pony Club.

Over fifty years ago she helped to train one of the first Mounted Games teams to qualify for the famous Prince Philip Cup at the Horse of the Year Show and has been training ever since.

Whilst working for the Embiricos family who ran a National Hunt Stud near Petworth, she & her husband Wilf, devoted hours of their spare time to the local Pony Club Branch where they always found a pony for a needy child. They organised practices, rallies and Summer camps at Barkfold where the highlight for the members was jumping an amazing Cross Country course designed & built by Beryl & Wilf. There were smaller jumps, but everyone aspired to the bigger jumps and a huge hedge which, like fish, got bigger with the telling.

Risk Assessments & Health & Safety were not an issue in those days!

In the background, however, lies another story.

The Embiricos owned Aldaniti who in 1981 won the Grand National ridden by Bob Champion.

Everyone knows the story of Bob recovering from cancer and Aldaniti from an injury. It was Beryl who looked after the horse during his long box rest before he returned to be trained for the National.

After the Bob Champion Trust was founded in 1983, Beryl was in charge of Aldaniti four years later when he was ridden over a period of weeks for 250 miles – each mile being ridden by different people including celebrities, finishing at Aintree on Grand National Day.  More than three quarters of a million pounds was raised and Beryl continued to accompany the horse on many more fund-raising ventures.

Beryl is still actively involved with the Lord Leconfield Pony Club and raising money for the Bob Champion Trust.  She makes a small charge for her Mounted Games practices and this is donated to the charity each year.

She has a wonderful rapport with children of all ages making sure they have high standards of turnout & behaviour, they having learnt “the Beryl way”.

(Image: Kit Houghton)


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