With sad goodbyes, we departed Shap and headed to Appleby, a famous town where gypsies show off and trade their horses once a year at the Appleby Horse Fair. We saw a much quieter Appleby when we stopped for lunch at the local pub. We photographed the gorgeous cob stallion Johnny, owned by Kim Carrick.
After a night in Stone, we rose early and headed to Exmoor National Park to capture the native and endangered Exmoor ponies that still roam the region. On the North Devon coast, we visited the sister towns of Lynton and Lynmouth for lunch and enjoyed the spectacular sea cliff views and picturesque harbour — it was truly a standout.
Exmouth beach provided a beautiful backdrop for photographing Gypsy Cobs, with its red sandstone cliffs hitting the sand and water in a breathtaking manner. We photographed two stallions, a buckskin called McCartney’s Regal, and a black and white called McCartney’s Marmite.
Moving on to Nadderwater, amongst the quintessential country fields we snapped up more shots of McCartney’s Regal and a red and white gelding Cob called Biscuit.
Nearing the end of the tour, we hiked through Dartmoor National Park to point our lenses at the hardy, semi-wild herds of Dartmoor ponies. We continued on to Norman Scott’s ancient 11th century cottage to photograph his elegant Connemara mare Bridie (registered name Spiddal Creevy Banks), sired by popular horse show winner Banks Timber. Chickens happily meandered the farmyard, and at one point Bridie was led inside Scott’s house so we could snap photos of her gazing out of the entranceway with its charming stable door.
During our time in Devon, we photographed many of Stephen and Julie McCartney’s Gypsy Cobs, and our last leg of the tour saw us in the ancient tin mining town of Tavistock, photographing onsite at the Collytown Shetland Stud.
Fortunate to have family in England, after the tour wrapped up I travelled to Wigan to visit. We embarked on our own tour, exploring many more beautiful parts of the country. One of the highlights was a private photoshoot in Rainford, St Helens, Merseyside with a Gypsy Cob gelding named Stevie and his owner Paula. Much of the countryside of England and parts of Wales reminded me of my own beautiful hometown, Neerim South.
Well-rested and with my cup filled, I returned home to my family in high spirits after sharing my love of horses, breeding cobs and photography with like-minded souls.
Rachel offers a variety of Equine photography sessions. Her website is full of incredible images and information about her photoshoots. www.equinephotographybyrachelflynn.com
Rachel also has a mailing list that you can join – links to sign up are shared regularly on Rachel’s Facebook page and website. Joining the mailing list avails you of “First-to-know” information about photoshoot events, incredible VIP offers throughout the year and there is a VIP draw EVERY MONTH where you could WIN A PHOTOSHOOT!
To see more of Rachel’s equine photography from the tour and from her home in West Gippsland, Victoria, visit her Facebook or Instagram pages.