The International Society for Equitation Science (ISES) Hartpury Conference 2020 has been postponed until 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Local Conference Organising Committee at Hartpury University, where the showpiece event was due to take place in August, have made a joint decision with the ISES Council to reschedule it for the summer of next year.
Further details regarding revised dates will be announced in the near future.
The following statement was issued on behalf of the organising committee to ISES members and 2020 Conference sponsors and speakers by ISES President Orla Doherty; Hartpury University Pro Vice-Chancellor Rose Scott-Ward, Co-Chair of the Hartpury Local Conference Organising Committee; Dr Jane Williams, Co-Chair of the Hartpury Local Conference Organising Committee, ISES Junior Vice-President:
“Whilst we are saddened to have had to postpone the conference, we are sure you all not only understand but also fully support this decision in light of the ongoing Covid-19 situation worldwide and the impact this is currently having, and will continue to have on our communities for the immediate future.
“We are all going through incredibly difficult and challenging times, and we hope you and your families and friends stay safe and well, and look forward to catching up for happier times next summer at Hartpury.”
Professor Natalie Waran, Co-Founder, Hon Fellow and Trustee, International Society for Equitation Science, said: “Though extremely disappointed that we will be unable to convene at Hartpury for our international conference this year, equitation scientists and practitioners worldwide understand that this is the right and responsible decision during such a challenging time.
“We are all grateful to the local organising team at Hartpury who had put together a wonderful programme of talks and practical sessions, and look forward to next year, when we will be able to safely gather to discuss how the latest research findings can be practically applied to ensure the safety and welfare of horse and rider in their interactions with one another.”
Scientific and equine consultant Dr David Marlin, who was due to be a speaker at the ISES Hartpury Conference 2020, added: “Whilst I, like all involved, am extremely disappointed, this is the responsible and right decision.
“We have no clear idea yet when the situation will improve, when travel will return to normal or when large gatherings will be permitted.”