OVER 140 guests attended last Friday night’s North Eastern Region awards ball in the D-Hotel, Drogheda, the first to be held in this region of the Association of Irish Riding Clubs since 2019.

The ball was organised by Sarah Richardson (Boyneside), Lisa O’Brien (Ashbrook) and Maria Carrick (Cheval) and guests from their three clubs were joined by members and supporters of Castle Hill, Thornton, Ard Lú, Choltraí, Kilronan, Drynam and Killeek.

There was a drinks reception on arrival followed by a chocolate fountain and sweet carts with guests sitting down to a four-course dinner at 8pm. During dessert, regional committee members Sinead Nolan (Kilronan) and Jane Robinson (Drynam) announced the year’s award winners, as voted on by members, and these were:- Olivia Nolan, Castle Hill (Person of the Year), Jane Robinson, Drynam (Club Member of the Year), Maria Carrick, Cheval (Club Secretary of the Year), Drynam Riding Club (Club of the Year) and Cheval Pre Festival (Show of the Year).

After the awards ceremony, the organisers proceeded with a monster raffle of at least 50 prizes, ranging from tins of sweets to alcohol, horse rugs to beauty sets, sprays to headcollars, etc. The D-Hotel kindly put up a meal for two in their restaurant while each club, and some individual members, also donated raffle prizes.

The night’s entertainment was provided firstly by live act Shane O’Neill from Ratoath who was followed into the early hours of the morning by DJ Gaz.