Robinsons Brewery, situated in the heart of Stockport for over 180 years, have announced a special new addition to their Shire horse family: pregnant Shire horse: Horsmans Princess Giselle (pictured) a sweet natured 10-year-old bay mare who is scanned in foal and due to give birth on April 23rd, 2019. Robinsons purchased the brood mare in January 2019, after agreeing the sale in 2018 with P&M Bedford.
John Robinson, Retail Operations Manager at Robinsons Brewery, said: “On behalf of myself and the board, we are extremely pleased to be preserving and promoting the Shire Horse breed. Robinsons was built on the backbone of the Shire horse 180 years ago, which has continued to be an important part of our family business. Purchasing Horsmans Princess Giselle is the first step in the right direction for us to become an integral part of the breeding programme. We now also have our own registered prefix, Hillgate, with the Shire Horse Society.”
Robinsons has been passionate about Shire horses since the beginning of their business time. In their heyday, before the arrival of the internal combustion engine, they were in the main brewery yard working every day to deliver traditionally brewed ales to local inns and hostelries. However, their primary use was inter-brewery work: moving bottles and cases between Unicorn and Hempshaw Brook Breweries in the 1950’s. The Shires also moved cinders from the main yard, spent hops and waste paper. They instantly became cherished and valued members of the family. Since which, Robinsons has always kept Shire horses at the stables at the brewery in Stockport, who often compete in shows and remain a major attraction for tourists.
Paul and Matt Bedford, Shire horse breeders (who also sold MOJO to Robinsons in 2017), said: “The success we have felt with being a part of selling and exhibiting MOJO to National champion for a brewery for the first time since 1959 is one thing, but we feel that being involved in having a brewery back in the breeding and promotion of the Shire horse is a massive step in the right direction. We are very excited that Robinsons will not only be supporting the Shire horse breed but are also helping with the breeding side too. We are happy and proud to be a part of providing Helen and Lisa and the rest of the team with their show horses and with most recently; Horsmans Princess Giselle.”
Sire (father) to the foal is known as Acle Challenger - a 3-year-old registered Shire stallion and premium colt son of the famous Metheringham Upton Hamlet, who was said to be the best Shire ever to have been, worldwide. Breaking many records along the way, Hamlet was 3 times National champion stallion and 3 times Shire horse of the year in 2011, 2014 and 2015.
Helen Preece, Head Horseperson at Robinsons Brewery, explains: “Horsmans Princess Giselle is currently living between Alderley Edge and the Davenport Arms in Woodford with her field companion Royale, who was at the brewery around 10 years ago and is now enjoying his well-deserved retirement. The foal is due to be born on April 23rd and will be moving to the brewery here in Stockport this summer, when we will be hosting special meet and greets with the foal. The team and I are thrilled to welcome the beautiful new edition to the family and are proud to be involved with the beginning of a new era for Robinsons.”