Work begins on new all-weather arena

Tyrone Farming Society chairman Alan Kyle and secretary Edwin Cartwright on site as work begins on new equestrian training arena which will be completed in time for this years Omagh Show at the beginning of July.
Tyrone Farming Society chairman Alan Kyle and secretary Edwin Cartwright on site as work begins on new equestrian training arena which will be completed in time for this years Omagh Show at the beginning of July.

Work has started on the construction of a new all-weather equestrian practice arena at the Omagh Showgrounds.

Diggers began preparing the site last week with the aim of having the £56,000 project completed by the middle of next month.

The project is being carried by the Tyrone Farming Society, organisers of the annual Omagh Show.

Society chairman Alan Kyle said the new sand-based facility would be a great addition in catering for the 1100 plus horses that take part in the equestrian programme at Omagh Show every year.

“The equestrian programme is a huge part of Omagh Show and the new facility will be used primarily as a practice, warm-up arena before competition,” he said.

“I don’t know much about horses but they have become a very important part of the show.

“Many of these horses are hugely valuable and this facility is a tremendous addition in terms of safety.

“The real bonus is that it will be available for use in all weathers.”

The work is being carried out by Dromore firm McCusker Contracts and the project is scheduled to be completed well in advance of this year’s agricultural extravaganza which takes place on Friday, July 1 and Saturday, July 2.

Soil is currently being stripped back to be replaced by a layer of broken stone topped with approximately nine inches of sand to provide a free draining surface.

The training facility will be open for business all year round and will be available for use by local pony clubs.