President’s Reports

President’s Report – August 2016

ICCPS AGM 2015 resulted in a number of issues for the future. What is the object of the ICCPS today? What do the member Societies expect from the Executive Board? A Questionnaire was sent out to all Societies and the outcome will be discussed later at this meeting, thanks to Dermot and Karen. Personally, I think ICCPS must not take too big loads on board at a time, as we all have to take care of our own Societies’ work as well. This year, I feel that all EU Societies have been busy to comply with the new Equine Passport Regulations.

Going through minutes and mails from a couple of years of the ICCPS history, some points seem to be recurrent. Some of them, really, are now done, like the BEC and HWSD issues. “When the Mother Society works, everyone works”. So true. The CPBS has a big impact on the main challenges and issues for the ICCPS that was pointed out in my President’s Report for 2015:

International marketing of the Connemara Pony

The CPBS is re-organized into new sub-committees. A working co-operation between Ex Board and the “Performance & International” CPBS committee (Chair: Denise Norton) will be a great help for a world-wide promotion of the pony. At the March meeting 2016 we agreed on the importance of having a tool to communicate all good news about performance Connemara ponies. As usual, this is a question of active member societies, a working web site and financial requirements. What is the ICCPS role in this? Who has the money?

International database

The CPBS database has to be restored before going into an international part of the project. A lot more work than expected was needed. The ICCPS has to wait. We have to figure out how to finance.

Improvement of judging and inspection systems

The linear scoring system is not yet working within the CPBS. ICCPS has asked for an international training system for overseas judges and a possible funding through the Irish Department of Agriculture. The discussion document “Inspection, Classification and the Connemara Pony in 2015” was presented by Dr Jack Murphy in October 2015 “to assist (CPBS) Council and Members design, create and implement the optimal zootechnical advances for future generations of the Connemara Pony breed”.

Hoof wall separation disease (HWSD)

CPBS Stud Book Principles were approved in May 2016 by Irish authorities, with new rules on Classification of BEC ponies and system for mandatory HWSD tests for Class 1 and 2 ponies which have to be implemented by all daughter societies.

The purposes of the ICCPS

The outcome of the Questionnaire sent to member societies will form the guide line for the future work within the ICCPS and the Executive Board.

The ICCPS would not work without you, member societies and Ex Board officials and I do hope there will be a successful future for the international society. Finally, I would like to thank the CPBS Chair, Subcommittee and Office for being so helpful and informative. Good communication makes things easy.

Madeleine Beckman

President August 2016

President’s Report – August 2013

I had the honour of being elected President of the International Committee last August. I wish to thank the previous President Tuula Pyoria for her tremendous work over many years on behalf of the International Committee. She has shown great commitment to the development of the the pony both in her own country and worldwide.

There have been a number of initiatives taken by the Executive during the past year


It was decided by the I.C.C.P.S at the Annual meeting in 2012 to contribute financially to a stand at the Olympia Show in London last December  to commemorate the centenary of the Ml O ‘Malley’s visit to the same venue in 1912. The stand was organised by the C.P.B.S and with help from the British Society, it was a great success. Indeed, it shows what can be achieved by close co-operation between two Societies. A special thanks is due to all those who helped to make it such an enjoyable occasion.


It is imperative that the Committee has a properly designed Website that is informative and attractive to users. There has been an initial review undertaken by Susan Mc Connell which led to the site now carrying information on events taking place during the year and news from all Societies. There will be further improvements to the site during the year. We urge all Societies to supply news items for inclusion on the site.

International Database

This is a major objective of the International Committee. It will take time and money to complete the task. The Database of the C.P.B.S is at present being updated.  The work on the International Database will commence when the review of the parent  Database is completed.

Implementation of the International Rules

The final version of the rules has been approved by the Council of the Connemara Pony Breeder’s Society and will be presented to the International Committee at the August meeting. It must be made clear that the International Rules are subservient to the Principles of the Parent Society which must be implemented in all European Countries in accordance with E.U. Directives, Decisions and Regulations.

Annual Michael O’ Malley Award

This year’s recipient is Ms Pat Lyne. It is in recognition of her tremendous research and work on the Connemara Pony. Pat is unique in that she has added to the heritage of the pony by recording over many years the memories of breeders and owners. Her dedication has been unique and she thoroughly deserves this year’s award. “Congratulations Pat”

Promotion and Publicity

The promotion of the pony worldwide is included in the objectives of the Mission statement of the International Committee. The promotion of the pony in Countries with daughter Societies plays an important part in achieving this objective. The international Committee appreciates the great efforts made by all Connemara enthusiasts to promote this lovely pony. Indeed, at the French National Championships, Connemara ponies won the 125cm,130cm and 135cm competitions in which all pony breeds participated. Furthermore, a Connemara pony won the 3 day Event Competition. The I.C.C.P.S. requests all Societies to contribute articles to the website. It is very important to promote the activities of our Junior members as they ensure the future of the breed.

I wish to thank all the International Societies and the the Executive for their help during the year. A special thanks is due to Susan McConnell for her marvelous work as Secretary in coordinating the work of the International Committee.

Dermot Power

President August 2013

President’s Report – August 2010

Today the ICCPS AGM and Technical Meeting are scheduled only to these few afternoon hours. Some of you may wonder why. Over the years there have been complaints; the meetings last too long, always same items on the agenda, not much progress to be seen etc. When there was plenty of time available people did not concentrate on the essential but rather went on with explanations over the same things we had already heard previous year. As time is valuable to all of us, I hope this years limited hours force us to concentrate more to those items that really should be finalized soon.

One of these items is the International Rules. Last year we were unable to make any decisions over the rules as we had very few comments from the societies and the Parent Society did not present a draft to work from. As agreed in last year’s meeting, we got the draft from the CPBS. This first draft from Parent Society came out to sister societies just before last Christmas. Several of the societies send their comments and suggestions in the beginning of 2010 and these were forwarded to the Parent Society as well as circulated to all societies. Draft number 2, where some of these suggestions were taken into account came from the CBPS two months ago. Now, we should be able to go through the draft, see and hopefully also agree what needs to be changed and get results, so that we do not have to go home with empty hands. We also have to remember Connemara ponies are bred not only in Europe. Breeders in countries outside EU must be able to live with the rules, too. And last but by no means least, the rules should be there also for the betterment of the breed – as someone said years ago in the Brussels meeting “we are breeders, not multipliers”.

Some of you might remember General Communication was on the Agenda last year. It was agreed good dialogue between CPBS Council and ICCPS executive board is necessary and there was – and still is – plenty of room for improvement. It was also felt a better dialogue between sister societies is important. Although in some ways the communication might have improved, I doubt there really has been enough progress. As far as I understand the international matters are not discussed in the CPBS council and the ICCPS ex board certainly does not receive any information from the CPBS council or from its International Committee. There are also societies we never hear from during the year. It seems very quiet in many ways for 11 months after the AGM and then suddenly just before the next meeting everyone wakes up. I do admit I’m guilty to this, too. But just before the meeting it is often too late, as no decisions can be made if the societies have not had a fair chance to discuss things and proposals in their own councils. If only we could agree to answer to the inquiries promptly it would help a lot. Could we possibly agree some kind of code of practice in all communication? Societies as well as executive board and CPBS President and his International Committee are certainly welcome to share their thoughts and ideas anytime, not just before the meeting.

International Committee of Connemara Pony Societies, President’s Report 17.8.2010

In his report, John Tennant suggests the societies appoint persons who would forward the news and information to the ICCPS. Please, take his suggestion seriously! There has been lot more visitors on the ICCPS website when we got the new section “Pony Information” and all the links there. News are always interesting. We are grateful to our PR Officer John Tennant as his efforts enable us to add the news on the website.

There is a link “Registered Prefixes” and a promise – coming soon. I’m afraid has taken lot more time than I thought to compile this list and I’m still working on it. Unfortunately, we never got the program that could have been used in this so each and every prefix or suffix with its holder and country must be added separately to the alphabetical list. So far the list has 29 pages. Almost every country are listed now but two big breeders, Ireland and France, are still missing from the list as I haven’t received the information from them, yet. The plan is to get the list out of my hands and on the website as soon as I get the information from those countries.

According the ICCPS Constitution promoting the Connemara breed is high on the agenda.

The World Equestrian Games takes place in Lexington Kentucky from September 25th to October 10th, 2010. Connemara ponies will be seen there – not competing, but the American Connemara Pony Society will have a booth in the Equine Village. Two weeks of breed demonstrations with Connemara pony ambassadors and dozens of volunteers will certainly be noticed among the visitors. The efforts and hard work of the ACPS are much appreciated and on behalf of the ICCPS and Connemara community I’d like to say thank you to everyone involved. We are waiting for a report!

Performance classes are now welcomed addition to the Clifden Show week. Last year’s puissance was a huge success despite of the demanding circumstances and Friday is now firmly fixed as an annual performance event. CPBS is to be congratulated for taking this step, as by performing the ponies promote themselves best.

I’d like to use this opportunity and thank all who have actively taken part to the ICCPS discussions during the past year. Special thanks go to our hard working Secretary Susan McConnell. While the rest of us will go home and relax a bit after what hopefully will be a fruitful meeting, her work will continue with the minutes. In order to make her job easier I hope we’ll have a good meeting today.

Tuula Pyöriä ICCPS, Chair

International Committee of Connemara Pony Societies, President’s Report 17.8.2010

President’s Report – August 2009

“To develop, promote and preserve the Connemara pony as a distinctive breed, internationally”. The mission statement of the International Committee of Connemara Pony Societies defines our goal. During the past ten years we have achieved something but we can’t rest on our laurels. There is lot to do and each and every ICCPS Society should do it’s share. All the societies work hard in their own countries but often it seems there is very little interest in the international matters.

One of the highlights of the year is the fact that the International Database took a step forward. So far only Irish Connemara ponies can be found in the database but hopefully it soon can be called an International Database. I suppose some countries / societies would still like to know a bit more about the project before forwarding the data from their country. For some reason it seemed impossible to get any facts put on to paper so that everyone could see the same information. Personally, I felt rather embarrassed when the societies turned to me asking more information and I did not have any details and could just advise them to turn to the CPBS. Anyway, lets hope for the best and maybe we will get the facts here later today.

The ICCPS website update was a big task. The website has been there for years but very little has happened to it. The layout is still the same but under the subtitle “Pony Information” there are many new links added, packed with information of the pony, societies etc. In the modern world the web with its vast possibilities is a very good tool to provide information and to promote the pony. We could use it more efficiently if all the ICCPS societies would join community effort and provide information and results from their country. John Tennant has been wonderful help with the website, collecting information, news and bits and pieces from around the world. Without his devoted work we had never been able to add so many new links on the website. I suggest all societies would support the ICCPS by sending any interesting news to him, also photographs are much appreciated. I also want to thank Satu Pitkänen who has done the actual work with the website. I’d like to see her to continue as a webmaster but maybe we should consider some kind of compensation for her work in regularly updating if we want the website continue to promote and provide information.

Performance ponies have been flying the Connemara pony flag high this year. Individual Gold and Silver Medals in show jumping at Scandinavian / Baltic Championships as well as individual Gold and Silver Medals at the European Championships not to mention many more successes throughout the year – not a mean achievement for the breed. We can be proud of these achievements as the breed is not vast in numbers. Good performers are best promoters of Connemara pony and we should be able to use them more in PR-work. So whenever you come across a spectacular performer please send us a photo and the results as well as information of the pony to be added on the website.

Exciting news was the fact that there is also a Connemara Pony Society in South Africa. This is something John Tennant found out, as a good copper should! There has been some change of e- mails and hopefully we will hear more details from the South African society in the near future as they are interested in joining the International Committee.

Review of the Rules for registration was the job the executive board was to do during the winter months. Some of you might remember I send an email to Societies asking comments and ideas. It was just very unfortunate that so few reacted at all – even the comments from Ireland come only few weeks ago. Now we are in a situation where we were not able to produce a clear and simple proposal for approval at this meeting as originally planned. We probably all agree the old Sport sections should be deleted but the actual wording and many details are still open. This is a situation I wanted to avoid last year as over the years too many hours have been spend debating over the rules at the meetings. This can’t be helped now and we just have to face the fact that the rules are going to take a lot of time, again.

One of the Agenda items this year is the General Communication between CPBS, ICCPS and Sister Societies. There clearly are information gaps and they are a serious problem. Lack of communication has caused dissatisfaction and complaints here and there and sometimes it seems that even the simplest of questions remains unanswered. This must change soon if we want to achieve anything. A good dialogue is vitally important, as is feedback and communication. It saves us from a lot of problems and wasted hours and maintains healthy relationship between CPBS and Sister Societies. This also means closer co-operation between CPBS Council and ICCPS executive board is necessary. I wonder if the CPBS Council members understand the role of the ICCPS or if the ICCPS agenda and minutes ever reach them? Do they know why ICCPS exists or what we are trying to do internationally? Theses question are asked because the ICCPS has consistently asked for a copy of the CPBS minutes to be send to the ICCPS Executive so that it can be kept up to date with matters that could affect the work of the ICCPS through its role in the Mission Statement. This request has so far not been adhered to. It would be much easier to work for the Connemara Pony if the right hand knows what the left hand is doing… I hope this agenda item will be thoroughly discussed and we could find a solution how to improve the communication between us.

I’ve heard several times we should use less time on rules and more on the pony and I totally agree. Just remember why we are spending time here at the meetings. We all share the same interest, the Connemara pony. Should we not see much more interest centered on the ponies, development of the breed and the promotion of the ponies instead of “pony politics”?. We are all working for the good of the Connemara pony in our own countries. We should do it also here at the meeting as we all are – or at least we should be – on the same side. As my predecessor wrote in his last report “we should work harmoniously and strongly to achieve the implementation of the Mission Statement as laid down in the ICCPS Constitution”.

When you leave this room today you hopefully do not forget the ICCPS for coming year but take an active role in the international affairs.

Tuula Pyöriä ICCPS, Chair

International Committee of Connemara Pony Societies, President’s Report 18.8.2009

President’s Report – August 2008

As it is only few months since our AGM in March this won’t be much of a report but more of some personal thoughts. It was a great honour and challenge to be elected as a new chair of ICCPS and I hope I can serve ICCPS and the Connemara pony as well and with as much enthusiasm as our former President John Tennant has done. We can consider ourselves very lucky that he willingly accepted his new role as our PR coordinator after retiring as a President. He has started with this job with great efficiency, bursting with ideas. His latest idea is an international performance register to promote the breed and help the breeders. Hopefully we will be able to build up this register in the near future. This, as well as any other promotion needs support from all the societies. I do sincerely hope that every society would contribute and share the information of show and competition results, successful breeding animals etc with the rest of us. Also do remember that we already do know the Connemara pony is “simply the best” – we just have to get the message through to those who do not know it, yet! In each and every country a lot of work is done to promote the Irish breed and hopefully the parent society recognises this work. Let us all know what you are doing. Share the information, do response the requests. It won’t take too much of anyone’s time but it can make the difference that distinguishes Connemara pony from other native breeds what comes to the visibility internationally. This should benefit the breed and the breeders everywhere.

Great news came from CPBS few weeks ago. The database with all the Connemara ponies registered in Ireland is up and running, available to everyone on the CPBS website. This has been a long project. Hopefully the information from sister societies can be included shortly. The cost shouldn’t be obstructive to any society as I was told in spring the CPBS is funding the putting up costs. The annual maintenance cost would be around 1000 euros, shared with all the societies – maybe funded by the ICCPS?

ICCPS rules are in need of a review. Right now they are out of date and also rather confusing. In my opinion the rules should be as simple and straightforward as possible so that every society can accept to follow them. My suggestion would be that the executive board will look at the rules during the coming winter period and bring forward the proposal for updated rules to the next AGM. Of course opinions from the societies would be welcome as always. I’m sure none of us wants to sit in these meetings for the next 5-6 years talking about rules. It might be easier more efficient and save time if the executive board does the hard work of redrafting the rules according to the suggestions from the societies and next AGM either approves or not the new set of rules.

Last but not least, the ICCPS website. I’d like it to be more alive! Maybe up to date information of in hand and performance show dates, competitions etc. Even an international pony sales list was suggested as not all the societies accept foreign ponies to their sales lists. Maybe ICCPS newsletter could be on line? The website should of course be matter-of-fact and objective but also it should attract visitors so that they come again to see what is happening in the Connemara pony world! This shouldn’t even be complicated so maybe this is also something to think about.

Tuula Pyöriä Chair, ICCPS

President’s Report – 2007 / 2008

The ICCPS organisation at its last meeting achieved what can be said as a “milestone” – finally after almost 8 years of discussion and variations of rules, a standard Stud Book Rules system was formulated and accepted. Apart from the Data Base project, which it is hoped will be firmed and accepted this coming meeting, the way is now open for all Societies, including the mother Society, to work harmoniously and strongly to achieve the implementation of the Mission Statement as laid down in the ICCPS Constitution.

In looking back over the past year, several areas of concern immediately come to mind and I feel that as the retiring Chair, I should indicate that these areas of concern should be recognised. It appears on the surface that with the acceptance of the new Stud book Rules, albeit with some variances in several Societies, all of which comply with the EU Council principles, there appears to be a decided slackening of interest from groups in the ICCPS activities, newsletters etc. I have found this quite disturbing as in the past, a number of EU Societies have made strong approaches to have greater activity in the transfer of thoughts, ideas, performance activities and Stud activities. Yet, there has been no response to requests for such material for newsletters this year.

Another area of concern to me has been the lack of response from the CPBS in relation to the requests for abridged CPBS Council Minutes of meetings; Ideas and concepts re the development of promotional material for the Connemara pony sent for comments and so on. This lack of response is not confined to this year only unfortunately and I have often wondered in past years, how much of the material discussed in ICCPS general meetings, and if the minutes of these meetings are in fact tabled in CPBS Council meetings.

There is also little doubt that the internal problems of some groups do have an effect on the actions and activities of some dissident groups across the ICCPS system. I make haste to add that internal incidents are the problem of the Society involved and are of no concern to other groups. However, where these internal events, especially those emanating from the Mother Society, are posted throughout the Connemara World on Websites, Emails etc they are being used by varying dissidents in some groups in their attempts to disrupt efficient and effective Stud Book controls that are recognised worldwide.

It is in this area that I believe we can all assist the other groups. A short preamble of the internal problem, reasons for the disruption and the actions being taken could assist sister Committees in their actions to be taken to negate dissident activities.

I think the Mother Society could well take note of these comments and recognise that sister Societies are dependent on the Mother Society having a stable and balanced system of activities and be more forward in ensuring that the specific articles of the ICCPS Mission statement in article 2.2; 2.3; 2.4, 2.5 are in fact able to be effectively promoted and worked upon.

I believe that the ICCPS Executive and Sister groups now have a golden opportunity to re- read the Mission Statement and ensure that article 2.1 of the Mission Statement becomes its major function for the future. The CPBS has, with its introduction of the Connemara festival, opened the doors to a new concept of promotion. It must not be allowed to fall away. Promotion must be carefully thought about; ICCPS funds must be effectively used to ensure the movement of article 2.1 of the Constitution; the ICCPS groups must take a greater responsibility in the provision of material for the production of “An Capaillin” and perhaps an increase in volumes per year!

Societies must also discuss with and give support to the Mother Society in the development of Judges clinics (and ensure that these are developed and promoted without internal upheavals as has occurred) and above all, each and every Connemara Pony organisation within the ICCPS should and must look to its own promotion – promotion with the assistance of near groups – and /or passing to other groups ideas, concepts and effective promotional activities that have and will ensure greater promotion of our Pony.

We all know that the Connemara Pony is unchallenged as a performance Pony, we, as owners and breeders must take the responsibility of ensuring that “OUR” pony is recognised, sought after and promoted as being the “BEST” that can be sought after and used.

In the matter of Promotion, could it be possible for each Society in its production of its Magazine, introduce an “International” section wherein sister groups could provide material on developments within their specific groups, Pony activities, Stud performances etc???? This could be an area where each Society could appoint a promotions/newsletter editor to liaise with sister groups and provide material??

There is always a silver lining and in the main, I believe that in the past 7 – 8 years we have achieved a lot and have, and are, provided that organisation that the late Donal Kenny sought to achieve in his article to the British Chronicle in 1990 wherein he foresaw an organisation that would represent the Connemara Pony World wide.

As your chair for the past 6 years I feel proud that this organisation can and does just that – “represent and promote the Connemara pony in its true value as a unique and valued performance pony equal to none”!!!

In my final report to the ICCPS I thank all groups for their support, especially in giving me the opportunity to act as your Chair person. I have enjoyed working with you all for the development of the Connemara pony worldwide and I would like to indicate that I would feel honoured if the organisation or the Executive felt that in some way I could continue to provide my personal support.

The friendships gained I shall treasure forever.

John Tennant Chair ICCPS