Wish to Spend Time with Heavy Horses Comes True for the ‘Little Big’ Shireman

Dedicated staff at a local care home in Wisbech have worked hard to help a resident relive his equine background with a trip to spend time with heavy horses in Norfolk. John Ward and his family have a long history of farming and is a well-known figure in Wisbech and the shire horse world, so when staff at Lyncroft Care Home heard about his history, they were keen to help him relive some of his experiences.

As part of their ‘Make a Wish’ initiative, the team at Lyncroft arranged for John to visit Broad Farm in Norfolk, where he spent time admiring their collection of heavy horses and told staff all about how his family had bred similar animals, showing them at agricultural shows across the country.

“John had a fantastic day and enjoyed a hearty lunch in the pub on the way home too. said Home Manager, Brenda Durrington “He’s been talking about it ever since. It’s so important for us to facilitate trips like this so people to retain links to their past. It’s been fascinating to talk to John and hear how knowledgeable he is about farming and shire horses”.

John Ward farmed 400 acres of cereals, sugar beet and rape with his brother Graham at Decoy Farm in Gorefield. When his father first started farming at Decoy Farm shire ho

rses were the working units of the farm operations. After 

mechanization seemed to doom the breed to ‘extinction’, the Ward family retained their loyalty to the magnificent animals, breeding many championship winning horses.  John was appointed Field Officer of the National Shire Horse Society in 1992 and became a key in establishing the Society in England. Being of small stature he became fondly known as the ‘Little Big Shireman’, as together with his wife Pam, John was a well-known figure at Society and agricultural shows and the ‘go to person’ for any questions or problems. He and his wife continued to visit shire horse shows across Europe after he retired as Chief Steward, continuing to be the face of the English Society.  

His work with the National Shire Horse Society gave him the opportunity to meet Her Majesty the Queen and His Royal Highness Prince Charles when they visited the Shire Horse Society’s centenary show at Alwalton near Peterborough in 1978. John was also Chairman of the East of England Show showjumping committee and member of the Fitzwilliam Hunt at Peterborough. He was Chair of the Wisbech branch of the National Farmers Union in 1983 and dealt with issues of the day which included straw burning and the impact of the CAP (Common Market Agricultural policy).

Country Court Care’s ‘Make a wish’ initiative has seen residents from across the care home group fulfilling their dreams and enjoy special outings and activities; from scoring goals at Sheffield United Football Club, to off-road driving and lots of family tea parties.

Contact: http://www.countrycourtcare.co/lyncroft-care-home-wisbech

Laura Mills, Customer Relations Manager
Lyncroft Care Home
81 Clarkson Avenue, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, PE13 2EA

Call 01945 594 027 or E-mail us at [email protected]


Lucy Bateson, Marketing Manager
Email: [email protected]

Tel: 01733 571 951

Laura Mills, CRM Lyncroft Care Home
81 Clarkson Avenue, Wisbech, Cambs PE13 2EA
Email: [email protected]

Tel: 01945 475 229

About Country Court Care:

Founded in 1983, the Country Court Care Group is a family owned and run business, with the company philosophy “Our family caring for yours”. Country Court Care provides elderly care services within residential and nursing homes, together with associated day services. The business is renowned for being a best in class care provider with an outstanding reputation.

The Country Court Care Group operates 32 care homes which provide care for up to 1600 elderly people across the UK. The organisation will open three new care homes by the end of 2019 with a further three brand new luxury care homes planned for 2020.

Country Court Care has won numerous Great British Care Awards. In 2015 the company was awarded Health Investor Residential Care Provider of the Year and is in the carehome.co.uk ‘Top 20 Large Care Home Groups 2018’. The Group’s head office is in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire.

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