Saturday, 22 October 2011

Want to make something British then why not ask the British?

When Breyer first announced that next years Breyerfest theme would be 'Best of British' I think those of us in the hobby who are actually British immediately felt a twinge of apprehension. We have long endured the harsh reality of watching things get branded as 'British' when if fact they are far from that. But there was a small twinge of hope that the celebration horse would actually be a true British breed and maybe one of our many endangered British horse breeds...

The reality?

Nothing more than yet another 'British breed' that most people haven't even heard of. They have decided upon a 'drum horse'

Now I didn't even realise there was such a thing as a 'drum horse' breed even under the wide scope of random breeds that the American horse world seems to create. But alas apparently this is a 'British breed' but yet again nobody from Britain has even heard of it! Go down a pony club and ask them to list the British breeds or even if 'drum horse' is even a breed and not a single child will think it is (and I should know I'm the one teaching them).

It is so sad that Breyer have missed this opportunity. In the UK we have some beautiful breeds of horses many of which such as the Suffolk Punch, Cleveland Bay and Exmoor Pony are dying out. Breyerfest is a major event so why not use it to support those breeds that actually need support? Breyer does a lot of charity related work and to their credit have done great things for some endangered breeds, it is just sad that they lost this chance to do something good.

So why didn't they choose a proper breed? Well I think it comes down to a few things. The first is of course money, American's like big, fluffy, pinto coloured horses, that much is clear. The Othello mold is also a really popular one. So it makes sense that they would create a big, fluffy, pinto coloured horse on the Othello mold. The second is probably the lack of British breed molds made by Breyer meaning they would have to create an entirely new sculpture. The final reason is probably the American's fascination with the British monarchy. The drum horse is of course one of our great traditions so they have latched onto it and decided that what could be more British than something to do with the Queen? I'm sure there will be a nice decorator model with a tea pot on as well....

It's not that I hate the model or the way Breyer are doing's more that I feel a great love for our native breeds and a great sadness that they are dying out. I am sad that a chance that could have been used to raise awareness was instead used to make things up.