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The Life of a World Champion Farrier

Due for release in October, we have Sparks from the Smiddy: The Life of  a World Champion Farrier.


Sparks from the Smiddy tells the life story of David Wilson – a 6th generation blacksmith and world champion farrier. It includes details of David’s memories of annoying his father as a child by nailing horse shoes to the smiddy floor, his first experience of trying to catch a horse, the hard work he put into learning his trade along with picking up and running the family business. It follows the highs and lows of his earliest competitions through to his ultimate win at the 1985 World Championship in Calgary, Canada and concludes with the tales of the travel opportunities that his work and successes opened up to him including meeting the Princess Royal in 1995.

Told in a humorous yet modest style and including 60 of David’s photos, Sparks from the Smiddy sheds light on this previously unreported aspect of working and shoeing horses, helping readers understand the skills of a farrier and giving a nostalgic look back over this important part of rural life.

Andrew Arbuckle is Farming Editor of The Scotsman newspaper and the author of three books looking at farming life including Footsteps in the Furrow and We Waved to the Baker.

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