The Burghley Horse Trials have won the International Best Event Award multiple times, cementing its position as the premier equestrian event in Europe.
Event: Burghley Horse Trials
When: September each year
Where: Weston Park (Shropshire, TF11 8LE) and Hylands Park (Chelmsford, CM2 8WQ)
This three-day event (which actually takes place over four days) is one of the great tests of all round horsemanship; the Cross Country course is one of the most challenging in the world, while the show jumping offers a tense climax, with some of the best show-jumpers in the world.
Burghley House itself is one of the finest Elizabethan stately homes in the country, and it forms a spectacular backdrop to the Trials. This prestigious event dates to 1961 when the Marquess of Exeter invited the British Horse Society to transfer the event to his estate. As well as the annual trials, Burghley has hosted two World Championships and six European Championships.
Rent a motorhome or American RV
If you want to stay close to the action, we of course rent out motorhomes and American RVs every year and will deliver them on your behalf to the Burghley Horse Trials. When you arrive, your vehicle will be ready and waiting – fridge and cupboards stocked and services all connected. It really is a lavish and hassle-free alternative to traditional guesthouses or campsites.
Our vehicle accommodation is situated within short walking range of the Burghley Horse Trials, we offer an all-inclusive service, providing 24-hour support throughout your stay. Our units come outfitted with bed linen, towels, kitchen equipment, TV/DVD systems, and all you need for a weekend living the high life in the Scottish countryside. We can stock your cupboards on request and offer all customers a complimentary welcome package, including tea, coffee, sugar, milk and other essentials. Sleeping between 2 and 10 people, our vehicles are the height of luxury mobile living and are all yours throughout the entire duration of your stay (arrival and departure times are flexible to suit your timetable).
- Parking space included
- Fully prepared winnebago hire – including bedding, cutlery and crockery and all service and site fees
- Units are heated and/or air-conditioned and come with hot and cold water on tap
- Pre-stay shop (arrive to find your cupboards and fridge fully loaded)
- Satellite TV, DVD, music player
- 24hr support from our team on-site
A Little History
Originally the Trials’ ‘three day event’ was known as ‘The Military’ which was a competition for serving Officers where show jumping was used to prove a horse was still able to meet the service’s standards even after the test of obedience (i.e. dressage) and stamina and courage (i.e. roads and tracks, steeplechase and cross country – see the course on the right). In 2015, the prize list tops out at £63,000 for the winner so you can see why riders and their horses travel from across the UK, Europe and the world.
Walk the Course
While the organisers are rightly paranoid about the damage to the course of many hundreds of feet, they do allow you to walk the course with a guide, listening to an insider’s view on what’s required to take home the trophy. The ground compaction caused by so many pairs of feet though causes long-term damage to the sward, reducing the effectiveness of the irrigation, which is essential to provide good going so you must remain outside the track.
Where else to Stay
There is a large selection of lodgings in the local area, from campsites, to bed-and-breakfasts, to guesthouses and hotels. Many are booked up a year in advance, so you need to be quick to avoid disappointment.
Accommodation, Guesthouses & Hotels
Unsurprisingly accommodation in and around Stamford gets booked up early in the year in anticipation of the Trials. The best way to find the right accommodation for your requirements, including hotels, B&Bs, and guesthouses is to contact Stamford tourist information centre.
Travelling to Burghley Horse Trials
Barnack Rd, Stamford PE9 2LH, United Kingdom
Sat nav: use this postcode instead – PE9 3JY – which will direct you towards Burghley House
Travelling by Car
The Event is sign-posted of course but if you are using a satnav then this is the postcode for you: PE9 3JY. This will direct you towards Burghley House but once you see the temporary yellow signs then the organisers suggest you follow these and turn off your satnav! Key points to remember:
- If you have a Members’ car pass then go to Gate 1-Pilsgate Lodge on Barnack Road (B1443) or if you have a Public and season car pass or a disabled badge then head to Gate 4-Station Gate (B1443) & Gate 5-Bottle Lodges (B1081).
- On Saturday they also ‘strongly advise’ you to allow an extra hour for the last 10 miles of your journey.
Travelling by Air?
The nearest Main International Airports are East Midlands Airport (46 miles), Birmingham Airport (71 miles), London Stansted Airport (72 miles) and London Luton Airport (74 miles).
It’s not possible to land within Burghley Park so Helicopters and Light Aircraft owners should contact one of the following local airfields to make arrangements: Aerolease Ltd, Conington, Peterborough (01487) 834161, email@example.com / Sibson Airfield, Wansford, Peterborough, PE8 6NE (01832) 280289.
Travelling by Rail?
There are plenty of trains serving Stamford Train Station from Birmingham, Leicester, Nuneaton or Peterborough. While it takes approximately 20 to 30 minutes to walk to the Trials, you might want to get a taxi. It’s worth booking your train in advance via National Rail Enquiries 08457 484950.
What Else do you need to know?
If you want a change from the equine entertainment, enjoy the chance to explore the grounds, sample the array of food stalls and take your family down to the lakeside, where you can find the Land Rover Terrapod and Pedigree Dog Agility.
The Burghley LifeStyle Pavilion is a true shoppers’ paradise thanks to more than 70 companies selling unusual and stylish products for you and your home, many of which are exclusive to Burghley Horse Trials
The Country Living Pavilion is worth a visit to see the very best on offer from Britain’s independent designers, artisans, and craftspeople while the latest addition is the The Country Living Makers’ Marquee.
Meanwhile, the Horse Village includes stylish tailored riding wear and leisure clothing alongside performance enhancing products for you and your steed and should you own a miniature pony then they will have some snug rugs too!
The Rural Crafts Association Pavilions hosts over 150 stands by businesses of all sizes who specialise in making the unique and unusual to the highest of design standards.
Finally, the World of the Horse Pavilion will once again offer horse lovers a superb equestrian shopping experience so stop off at one of three ATMs and cashpoints around the shopping village before you enter! Don’t worry though, there are two Shoppers’ Drop facilities to leave your shopping behind the East Grandstand and at the Information Point near the Rural Crafts pavilion.
Food and Drink at Burghley Horse Trials
The Foodwalk is a favourite for visitors, with plenty of specialist food stalls offering a fabulous array of local and international food and drink for you to try and buy. Open from 9.00am – 5.30pm, Thursday – Saturday and 9.00am – 5.00pm, Sunday, there’s plenty of time to indulge!
Dogs are of course welcome at the Trials but must be kept under control and on a short lead with extending leads not permitted. The obvious pet etiquette is requested too, with bags available around the showground in order to clean up after your four legged friend. Assistance Dogs only are permitted in the grandstand and Members’ Enclosure with no special parking concessions for vehicles containing dogs. If distressed, they will be removed by the RSPCA/Police.
A great feature of the Trials is the Dog Crèche. Adjacent to the Exhibition Village, it’s open daily between 9.00 am – 5.00 pm where dogs can be left for two hours at a time Thursday and Friday (£3 per hour), two hours at a time Saturday am (£5 per hour) and four hours at a time from Saturday pm to Sunday pm (£15 for 4 hours) which is ideal timing if you want to catch the Sunday afternoon competition and presentations. For more info click here.
Please see the FAQ section of the Trials’ website for details about admission (with each disabled visitor requiring the appropriate admission ticket and one accompanying carer); Parking (Limited forward parking is available to blue badge holders. The Disabled Car Park can be accessed through Gate 4: ‘Station Gate’); Main Arena Viewing (book one of a limited number of spaces to purchase in the North Stand, Block E for disabled visitors with wheelchairs/scooters who are Blue Badge holders via their Box Office enquiry line: 01933 304744); Toilets (disabled access toilets are situated around the showground and cross country course accessible with a National Key Scheme radar key); Mobility scooters (subject to availability, Event Mobility (01386 725391) provides electric scooters and manual wheelchairs.
Hire a Motorhome at Burghley Horse Trials
Of course, if we can help you with our motorhome or RV rental for this or any other event please contact our friendly, knowledgeable team via this form: