Holme Park Flirt was born in 2002  by Holme Grove Prokofiev out of the  mare Holme Park Fantine.  She was backed as a 3 year old at the end of the 2005 and sold to Gill Brittle in Scotland  and went to her new home in August 2006.  Below are some of the e-mail communications I have had from Gill since having Flirt (stable name Fleur).

NB: Most recent e-mail at the top

 From: Gill Brittle [mailto:gill@gbrittle.wanadoo.co.uk]
Sent: 18 December 2011 23:32
To: Susan Attew
Subject: The Magnificent Miss Flirt

Dear Susan,

Congratulations on the arrival of the beautiful Annabelle. You will be delighted and I hope all are well. Please pass on our congratulations to Liz.

I was sorry to see the news about Fantine. She was a great mare and I hope that her wonderful temperament can be seen in these pictures of her daughter. Fleur is in stunning form. She is competing Elementary and is getting better and better. The last few times we have had quite consistent results and hope to improve on these. We were out on Saturday and won with 65% and 66%. I was delighted and Fleur was as ever. She is incredibly hard working and the only issue is making sure she has time to relax and not overdo it. Hence the pictures of her having a blast outside. We then went and wandered about and she munched grass. She is a wonderful friend and thanks to you for breeding her.

I turned up today with my Christmas hat, complete with antlers, which she loved and only tried to nibble the antlers a bit. The plan is to have quite a bit of hacking over the next couple of weeks, however we’ve had quite a bit of ice so have been unable to leave the yard. If this continues, we’ll have a bit of fun about the yard before returning to some more serious work in the new year.

Hope all the horses are well. As ever, love to all of you and the horses. Have a great Christmas and may be 2012 bring happiness, health and a lots of fun.

We’ll keep in touch.

Gill & Fleur

* * *  

From: Gill Brittle
Sent: 10 February 2010 20:29
To: Susan Attew
Subject: Fleur at SNEC on 6th Feb

Hi Susan,

A link to some photos of Fleur taken at SNEC. We were in the affiliated class and she won her novice class with 68.4%. She was absolutely magic!! I was so thrilled. I was phoning home and was in an undignified state of high excitement. Fleur ate her hay and blew in my ear. What a girl!


Love from Gill & Fleur

From: Gill Brittle
Sent: 03 February 2010 22:40
To: Susan Attew
Subject: Hi from Lapland!

Hi Susan,

Sorry I’ve not been in touch for ages. I feel very bad about it and Fleur has been reminding me.

Hope all is well at Holme Trakehners. The horses look so beautiful and I was very envious of watching the “girls” leave for Texas. I look forward to hearing how they get on.

We’ve been frozen for what seems an eternity up here. And we’ve not been the worst hit! We are really lucky as our outdoor school did not freeze. It was covered in snow for weeks but we could use it to loose school the horses since they were not turned out. Fleur loved this routine. She got a run about in the snow – a good kick and a snort depending on her mood and some cartwheels when her energy levels got really high. Back to her stable for a snooze and then a spot of work in the indoor school. Once the weather thawed and we got out hacking again (finally), she was a very cheery but beautifully behaved girl. It’s back to being frozen again so we’ll see how long we are confined to barracks this time. We are planning to go to a competition on Saturday but it all depends on the weather.

We’ve not been out competing over the winter. Lots of reasons but it was a good break and we did some training since I realise that I have to really improve my riding to keep up with my wee cracker of a horse. Fleur is not too bothered about this and thankfully doesn’t get too perturbed when I change my mind yet again!!  It’s an amazing hobby as the more you learn, the more you see there is to learn. Sue Petty, a list 1 judge from “down south” as we say up here, came up to give some lessons to us all and these really inspired me. We’re both quite puffed now at the end of our schooling sessions and it’s made a difference in terms of softness and energy.

Fleur is very established here. She learns so quickly but has delightful manners and a very sunny outlook. We are having lots of fun and are looking forward to spring and some competitions.

Love and big hugs to all

Gill & Fleur

From: Gill Brittle
Sent: 27 July 2009 10:11
To: Susan Attew
Subject: Thanks for advice!

 Hi Susan,

Just been looking at the pictures of the new foals and they are so beautiful!!.

Many thanks for posting my plea for help with the saddle. I received lots of replies and thanked all who offered help. We are sorted now. My Wow as been re-girthed and works a treat but I also got a second hand Kieffer Wien (thanks to Tanja) and it is super and very neat.

 So, nightmare over and as usual I got stressed and Fleur didn’t which is the main thing.

 Off for a bit of hacking today. Here are a couple of pictures of Fleur – eating and happy.

 Love to horses and humans.

 Gill & Fleur 

 Anyone any saddle suggestions for Gill?  Thanks Susan  Gill's email address - gill@gbrittle.wanadoo.co.uk

From: Gill Brittle
Sent: 22 June 2009 16:09
To: Susan Attew
Subject: To confirm

Hi Susan,

Just to confirm that Fleur has qualified for the Regionals at  Novice Restricted level. Clever girl indeed!! Now, any help here would be appreciated. We are still having trouble with her saddle sliding up her neck. It ends up sitting on the points of her shoulders and although she does not complain, it does affect her movement. Any ideas or any other owners who have had similar problems? What saddle do you use for your horses?

I get quite relaxed about this for a while and then it drives me up the wall. I am well up the wall at the moment !

Fleur in good form regardless of the saddle and absolutely no back issues. Maybe I should go bareback!

Have fun at the open day.


From: Gill Brittle
Sent: 14 June 2009 21:58
To: Susan Attew
Subject: Update from Fleurabelle.

Hi Susan,

I do hope you get good weather for the open day and please do send me the DVD. I love watching it and who knows, some day I may make the journey down. I love Forte and he looks very, very like his big sister. Friday looks magnificent too. What a clever girl Fantine is – do give her a big hug from us.

We are just back from holiday and Fleur has had almost two weeks off. She really deserved it as she has qualified for the Scottish Championships at Novice level (just over 67%). I am so delighted with her. Also, the most amazing result that I am waiting to be confirmed is that I believe we have qualified for the regionals at novice level too. We’ve two scores, 65% and 67% and two firsts although in one the first place was handed down to us (I love this sort of hand me down!!!) I really did not expect to qualify this year but was hoping to perhaps manage over the winter. Fleur is really developing and is very powerful with her big hock action. My riding is getting better too and it is so brilliant to improve and keep up with her.

We’ve just had a ton of rain and so tomorrow I think we’ll wander off by ourselves and have a lovely leisurely canter along some soft tracks.

Oh, and I measured her today. It did say 15.1hh but I am not good at measuring so it might be 15.2hh. Who cares….. She is a joy to hack and a joy to own and a perfect size for me.

Good luck for the open day.

Gill & Fleur

From: Gill Brittle
Sent: 27 October 2008 16:49
To: Susan Attew
Subject: Hello from Fleur
Hi Susan,

Hope you are all well and are enjoying slightly better weather that we had at the weekend. We had so much water I am surprised we did not float off!

So, it seemed like a good weekend to go away and compete in an indoor venue which is exactly what we did. Fleur was a star and we have qualified, at Prelim, for the Regionals at the end of February. We got 69% and would have got more if someone had paid more attention to the test instead of luxuriating in their beautiful mare! Yes, I had an error of course. What a chump!!!!! Anyway, Fleur was fantastic and won anyway so it did teach me a lesson. We are totally delighted with her as she is so consistent and is such a hard working little horse. Sunday was a day off and today we had a beautiful hack in the cold, clear day.

Tomorrow starts another round of practising since we have our riding club points on Sunday and will be trying an elementary test (we tried one last month and got just over 63% which I thought was good).

Hope all your horses are well and love to the family.

Lots of love,

Gill & Fleur.

From: Gill Brittle
Sent: 31 August 2008
To: Susan Attew
Subject: Stubble fields and a happy mare!

Hi Susan,

So sorry to hear of the horses in Spain – absolutely devastating for you since I know you regard them all as your horses. Goodness knows how or why these things happen but it’s awful. I am so sorry.

On a happier note, I love the picture of the boxer puppies. They are so beautiful and I’m sure they will find good homes. It must be so funny to hear them start barking and getting their legs coordinated.

We’re the start of stubble field season here. It’s seems like swimming at times since we’ve had so much rain. However today we ventured out into the fields and Fleur just adored it. Last year she had quite a lot to contend with – having four legs and all that! This year, she is as straight as an arrow and we are having so much fun. She is in wonderful form and has done really well in her competitions up to the end of July when we decided to have a break from competitions to concentrate on training. (A good canter through a stubble field is part of our new regime.) She is so well behaved at competitions that we don’t need to practise the strange environment stuff as she takes it all in her stride. The only one who shows nerves is me! So it’s training and fun until October and then we will start again. I love the pictures of Forte since he does look like his big sister. Do let us know about the new boy Oliver Twist. This looks so interesting and I’m sure he’s a smasher. I wish Julia luck as she embarks on more competitions with her boy.

Hope everyone is well and Liz is recovered after her travels. 

Love to all,
Gill & Fleur

From: Gill Brittle
Sent: 13 May 2008 08:19
To: Susan Attew
Subject: Hi from us up north - Fleur keeps shining!

Hi Susan,

Lovely to see the foals are arriving safely. It must be a delightful time for you all. Good news that Legend is feeling good and good for you for taking your time with him. It’s quite a brave decision to take things at the pace of the horse and not to rush things because you feel obliged to. It’s a big concept to grasp – took me years and when it’s going not quite right I do keep returning to it.

Fleur is a star and we are hoping we can go out this weekend to compete. She has a nasty cut on her fetlock due to field gymnastics and although sound on it, I don’t want to take any risks. Need to refer to point above!

We had a frightening experience a couple of weeks ago when out lorry broke down and we needed to be towed. The lorry was lifted onto the back of a huge flat-bed trailer and then the whole frightening assembly was driven back. All were very white faced and I felt quite sick about it. Fleur never even broke sweat. She was absolutely amazing. A very brave and sensible mare. She is really incredible and keeps getting better. She is also a complete pet!!!! How do you get a temperament like that?

Hope the sun is shining with you, off to see the girls and enjoy.

Love Gill
My reply:-

Hi Gill
Wonderful as ever to receive your lovely news on Fleur.  These horses are quite amazing aren't they.  We have just backed First Class and she has just the same unphased character!  She will be someone else's dream horse with her amazing attitude and beauty!
Thought it was time we let everyone know what was happening with Legend.  Our first priority is always to the horse and their longterm wellbeing.  As you say it is easy to be tempted by success and trophies when you know the horse is very talented but far more important to know they are relaxed and happy and managed in a way that suits the individual horse. 
I cannot describe the joy the new babies bring - every one so exciting.  Elektra and Sintella are expecting their first foals very soon and are looking very round and a little confused at their changing shape!  Never ceases to amaze me though the way nature works and as soon as the foal arrives they just know what to do and how to stand to make it easy for the foal to drink. 
Keep watching the website for our news and we will look forward to your next update on Fleur.


From: Gill Brittle
Sent: 31 March 2008 08:37
To: Susan Attew
Subject: A big hello from Fleur!

Hi Susan and Everyone,

I’m sure you are all busy with foals arriving and about to arrive. It’s great to read of all the new arrivals on your website.

It’s quite difficult to really update you on Fleur since the only way to describe her is perfect! She is the happiest, cheeriest, kindest, hardest working of horses and is a complete delight. We’ve entered the world of affiliated dressage and went away overnight to our first affiliated outing at the end of February. No major successes but we were pleased with our marks, a lot of improvement by the rider is required but that is why we are so addicted to the sport. Fleur was wonderful and not one hoof did she put wrong. One judge commented “calm and obedient test despite the horse in the corner” – we didn’t even notice it. Fleur’s concentration is immense and she is not disturbed by anything. This weekend we did well despite riding in the worst downpour imaginable. So, today we will hack out and enjoy a nature ramble. We met the bin lorry a couple of weeks ago in a narrow street with lots of parked cars. This was worrying but the men were great – they switched off the engine and all came out to pat her! I was really laughing and Fleur was highly entertained by all the attention. We then walked carefully passed it.

Hattie’s ligaments in her front legs are healing very well and we have started canter work. So both horses are in fine form and are very funny together. I am not sure about sisterly love but they do put on a good show. Let’s hope we can start putting on lighter rugs and enjoy some warmer weather.

I hope Fantine and Prokofiev are well – do let me know how they are. I hope First Class is enjoying the start of her training. If she takes after her sister you have another total star.

Lots of love from Gill, Fleur and Hattie.

(And yes she is 6 today!!!! A special carrot and apple treat is in store!)

Gill Brittle

Reply to Gill 31/03/2008

Oh How lovely to receive your update on Fleur!  She has always been such a delight to work with and it is so rewarding for us to know what pleasure she is bringing you.  All this family do seem so trainable - he brother HP Fortius is doing really well in his home and they love him to bits.  HP Fiasco went to his new home last week and is a great cause for amazement of his new owner at how he has taken everything in his stride.
We are trying a new experiement this year as we plan to breed Fantine to Legend which will be really exciting.  Just have to be so patient with breeding though as takes 11 months to see the results!!
Happy Birthday to Fleur and a big hug from us all at Holme Park Stud!

Love Susan 


e-mail 14/10/07

Hi Susan and Everyone,

It’s great to keep up to date with all your news on the web site. Some very sad and some very happy. It’s just so good to hear how everyone is doing.

Fleur is just a treasure. As you know, Hattie is on the long road to recovery after damaging her suspensory ligaments. Thankfully she is making good progress and we are continuing our rehab programme. Fleur has had to step into her shoes and has delighted in it. We’ve been doing a few small shows and will continue this over the winter. We’ve got about two shows a month which is great. She does very well and is always a complete joy to compete. She is really not bothered by much.

Today, the weather continues to be unseasonally mild, and we took advantage of our stubble fields. The delight of a canter round the fields in the sunshine. Whoops of happiness all round. Fleur never even flinched even when we set off a very cross rabbit that we had disturbed.

Delighted to see Fortius going to his new home. I am sure he will be superb. Hope Fantine and Fiasco are well. Love to all the horses and humans of course.

I must get some pictures of Fleur for you. She is beautiful.

Ci, my great friend and trainer always says that Hattie and I are like a pair of comfortable slippers. Yesterday when I came back on Fleur she said how wonderful to have two pairs of comfortable slippers! That’s how it feels too. We’ve competed twice over the last week and this week, we shall hack. Then she shall have a few days off whilst I go away and party. The we shall get back to work………

Take care, have fun.

Love Gill


e-mail 29/05/2007 

Hi Susan,

Sorry I cannot make the open day but hopefully I will manage in 2008. I’m sure there will be lots of picture on your web site and if possible, I’d love a DVD.

Fleur is in splendid form. She is now hacking out by herself as well as enjoying the company when we hack out with friends. We’ve been to four shows now and her behaviour at each has been exemplary. Whether we go alone or with Hattie, she is great and it’s a pleasure to take them away to shows. Her flat work is improving and nothing fazes her at all – apart from my appalling riding! Lucky me to have her and Hattie to keep me on the straight and narrow. She is really funny too and has quite a sense of humour. Including holding onto the door handle of stable loo and not letting you out. She thinks this is so funny and has caught quite a few of us thinking we were stuck there for the day. She then lets go and when you open the door you are greeted by Fleur standing right in front of you, ears pricked and with a big smile on her face.

Hope Fantine is ok. What news of Prokofiev? I hope he is well.

Love to all humans and horses and I hope the open day goes well.


e-mail 27/02/2007  Re: Fleur in February

Hi Susan,

Hope you are all well with humans and horses being in fine fettle.

I loved the email from Mr Prokofiev. Do say we like his grandfather’s music very much and it’s certainly prompted me to see if we should use any of Prokofiev’s amazing music when we get to the dressage to music phase.

All is going well here with progress being steady. We now measure in at 15.2hh (well almost).  Fleur went to her first show yesterday and I had hoped to send you some photos but as it poured all day I didn’t bother.  Luckily we had a large rug for Fleur and she was warm and dry. She was totally amazing – not one hoof did she put wrong. She settled very quickly and was very calm and popped into the indoor arena to do her test. I was thrilled since to be quite honest, it’s not all been plain sailing but that is horses, especially young ones. Anyway she won her walk and trot class, the very first test she has done. I am over the moon her whole attitude was such a delight. Her second test was even better but since we don’t canter in public yet we were well down the placings. I didn’t care since the aim was to go out on our own. This she did and was wonderful.

We’ve been out hacking quite a lot too and nothing daunts our girl. Except The Magnificent Shetland Seven! Several very hairy, very muddy and very boisterous shelties galloped towards us. Fleur spun round before deciding that these hairy horrors were well within her capabilities and she stalked past – making me promise that she never, ever has a bad hair day like that. I was in fits since she was horrified – she thought they were hideous. I’m with her on that.

I’m really enjoying the time with her and Hattie. Both girls are going from strength to strength.

I keep checking to see how Prokofiev is doing, and the rest of your horses. The web site is super.

Love to all.


(Photos will follow)

e-mail 10/11/2006 Re: Congratulations to your girls!

Hi Susan,

I hope everyone is well and all the horses are doing well too. Congratulations on your mares being awarded elite status. You must be delighted. The new mare looks absolutely gorgeous too. Your web site is very good but I must say that my heart was in my mouth watching  Limbo’s sale. No doubt yours was too. I’m sure he’ll have a wonderful home and its good news for everyone.

Fleur has won all our hearts. She was described as fabulous this morning as we were strutting our stuff in the outdoor school in what felt like a force 9 gale. Alys has also told me to tell you that she is a total stunner. She was lead horse on our hack and was an angel whilst the two lads who should know better, wound each other up to the point that we dispatched one home early on his own!

We’re aiming to try some small competitions in the New Year. Our Dressage Group holds their shows on our yard so it’s an ideal place to start. We cheated on Monday and rode around the dressage boards and markers. I awarded us a 9 for all our movements! She is an amazing little horse and every day is such fun.

Hope the rain is not too bad with you. It’s quite vile here.

Kind regards