Opinion: Burghley is Europe’s best

Jeweller John Dawson
Jeweller John Dawson
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Huge crowds have been pouring into Burghley for ‘Europe’s best’ equestrian event

On day three of the annual eventing, reputed to be one of the best in the sporting calendar, tens of thousands of visitors filled the stands to watch the Dressage with as many flocking to the 600 stalls.

Crowds at Burghley

Crowds at Burghley

Among them was Dawson of Stamford, the jewellers, based in Red Lion Square, who has had a stall at the Burghley Horse Trials for 34 years.

“I come here because it is reputed to be the best show in Europe,” said John Dawson, who is also a Stamford town councillor.

“It’s a good place for us to promote our name. We have people from all over the world here. Burghley is very selective, so it’s full of good quality shops.”

Another regular to the event is Jon Whowell, from Ryhall, the head of Rutland CAMRA – Campaign for Real Ale.

Mr Whowell, who has been helping at the Horse Trials for the past 10 years said: “I enjoy being here. It’s a great social event with good shopping. People who come from outside the area always remark how friendly everyone is.”

While large proportion of the visitors were there for the Dressage, judging by the crowded stalls it was evident that just as many had come to browse and buy from the many shops, selling items ranging from riding attire and Rolex watches to jewellery and jams.

The Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials is the second biggest earner for the eastern area economy after the Grand Prix in Silverstone.

According to an economic impact survey by rural regeneration agency the Welland SSP, the event contributes in excess of £16 million to the East Midlands economy.