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Stratford Racecourse Hunter Chase 2019

Sheldon Bosley Knight Hunter Chase 2019

Sheldon Bosley Knight were delighted to once again sponsor a race at the Stratford Racecourse Hunter Chase Evening in May.  The weather was fine and sunny which brought out the crowds for an exciting evening of racing.

The Sheldon Bosley Knight Open Hunters’ Steeple Chase was won by DOWNBYTHESTRAND owned by Mrs Christine Osborne, trained by local trainer and farmer Fred Hutsby and ridden by Mr William Thirlby.

The prize for the Best Turned Out Horse in the race was won by BUBBLE O CLOCK trained by Matthew Hampton and owned by Mrs G Grimwood. Laura Gaydon, Director of Sheldon Bosley Knight and part of the Sheldon Bosley Knight Rural Team presented the prize to the Groom.

Laura commented “We were delighted to support this popular evening of Racing at Stratford Racecourse. The evening was very well attended with superb racing, and congratulations to all connections of Downbythestrand.”

The Sheldon Bosley Knight Rural Land Agency team have been proud sponsors at the Stratford Races since 2016.

The Rural Team provides a wide range of services to the farming and landowning community, including Rural Land and Property Sales & Lettings, Equine Property services, Estate Management, Valuations, Agricultural Subsidies & Payments, Countryside Stewardship, Development & Diversification Advice, Contract Farming Agreements and Landlord & Tenant Services.

For more information or advice please contact the team on 01608 661666.

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Swalcliffe Park British Eventing Horse Trials 2019

Laura Gaydon of SBK with Swalcliffe HT winner Christina Wiederkehr

Laura Gaydon of SBK with Swalcliffe HT winner Christina Wiederkehr During the weekend of 16th and 17th March 2019, Sheldon Bosley Knight sponsored a BE100 section of the British Eventing Horse Trials at Swalcliffe Park, near Banbury, Oxfordshire.

Nearly 500 competitors competed over the weekend with classes ranging from BE80(T) (training), BE90 and BE100.

For a one day event competition, competitors perform a dressage test in front of a judge, jump a course of show jumps and then follow a cross country course of rustic fences including banks and a water jump, over a specific distance and within an optimum time.

In the Sheldon Bosley Knight BE100 section, 40 riders took part and the competition was won by Christina Wiederkehr riding her own Lilas Girl, an 8 year old 16.2 hh grey mare.  Christina won the section with a 27 dressage score and double clear in the show jumping and cross country phases with no time penalty, giving her a total score for the three combined phases of 27.

Winners Goodies - Sheldon Bosley Knight - Swalcliffe Park Horse TrialsLaura Gaydon, Director of Sheldon Bosley Knight, said “There were a number of local and professional riders competing at Swalcliffe Park Horse Trials last weekend, with many riders praising the organising team for the great “going” on the cross country and show jumping.  We are delighted to support a local affiliated Eventing competition and enjoy seeing the riders compete. 

The skill of Event riding is precision and obedience in the dressage phase, agility and obedience in the show jumping phase and accuracy and bravery over the cross country fences.

It is the start of the 2019 eventing season, however Swalcliffe provides a very educational and encouraging cross country course at the lower levels of British Eventing – giving horses and riders the confidence to build on their run for the rest of the eventing season”.

Sheldon Bosley Knight Rural and Equestrian Departments provide professional property advice for all rural and equestrian properties, from farms and bare land through to pony paddocks and commercial equestrian and competition centres. 

Sheldon Bosley Knight sponsored jump at Swalcliffe Horse Trials 2019If you would like any advice on a specialist property query, please do not hesitate to contact the Rural Team at Shipston-on-Stour on 01608 661666.

Sheldon Bosley Knight sponsored jump at Swalcliffe Horse Trials 2019

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Moreton Show 2017

Moreton Show 2017 - SBK Sponsor

Moreton Show 2017 - SBK SponsorSheldon Bosley Knight were very proud to once again sponsor the Moreton-in-Marsh Show on 2nd September 2017.

Now in its 69th year, the show has grown to become one of the leading agricultural shows in the country, drawing participants, competitors and traders from all over the UK.

SBK Logosponsored the Livestock Arena where crowds flocked to see the impressive line-up in the cattle and sheep competitions.

The grand finale, the Sheldon Bosley Knight Grand Parade of all the winning animals, was the biggest in the show’s history.

Moreton Show 2017 - dancing diggersLaura Gaydon, Director of SBK Logo said “It was a great day with beautiful weather, excellent attractions and huge crowds. We are very fortunate to have a show of this magnitude right on our doorstep”.

To see more photos please visit our Facebook page.

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Stratford Races 2017

John Ridge Trainer, Laura Gaydon SBK, Mr S Roche, David Kemp Jockey, Amy Reed SBK
John Ridge Trainer, Laura Gaydon SBK, Mr S Roche, David Kemp Jockey, Amy Reed SBK
L-R: John Ridge Trainer, Laura Gaydon SBK, S Roche, David Kemp Jockey, Amy Reed SBK

Sheldon Bosley Knight were thrilled to be able to sponsor the Handicap Hunters Chase at Stratford Racecourse earlier this month – the exciting race was won by Curraigflemens.

Company Director, Laura Gaydon and Rural Surveyor, Amy Reed made presentations to the Stable Girl of the Best Turned Out horse prior to the race and afterwards to the connections of the winning horse.

As a local Firm, SBK are delighted to sponsor Stratford Racecourse, particularly with our rural and equestrian property connections.

Laura Gaydon, Amy Reed and Winner at Stratford RacesIt is such a great evening for local trainers, owners and some from further afield on the Hunter Chase evening which we always enjoy.

SBK offers a comprehensive Rural & Equine Property Service.

For more information please contact Laura Gaydon MRICS FAAV at the Shipston office.

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Swalcliffe Park Horse Trials 2017

Swalcliffe Horse Trials 2017 3

Swalcliffe Horse Trials 2017 3Sheldon Bosley Knight were delighted to once again sponsor the Swalcliffe Park Horse Trials near Banbury, Oxfordshire.

The British Eventing Horse Trials ran over two days on the 18th & 19th March 2017, organised by Richard and Sarah Taylor with local, national and international competitors taking part.

The popular event early on in the season had near-perfect going on the cross country course, but the obstacles were causing plenty of questions.

The second day of competition began with the Sheldon Bosley Knight Section H BE100 open class.

Laura Gaydon and Charlie Chamberlayne and Julia Fairbank - Swalcliffe Horse Trials 2017 3aThe 44-strong field was won by local rider Julia Fairbank riding her own Shannondale Sonoma, winning on her dressage score of 25.8 after a double clear.

Second place went to Charlie Chamberlayne riding his own Black Op, and third place to Louise Scammell on her own Future Cantata.

Swalcliffe Horse Trials 2017 SBK RosetteLaura Gaydon, Director of Sheldon Bosley Knight said “the organisers Richard and Sarah Taylor once again hosted a very successful event, the going was good across the three phases and the cross country course asked some new questions.  We are thrilled to support this local equestrian event which is the highlight of the spring calendar for many local riders and businesses. Congratulations to all competitors and connections who took part”.

Pictured above, L-R, Charlie Chamberlayne, Laura Gaydon, Julia Fairbank.

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Laura Gaydon, Finalist in the BWIB Awards

BWIB photo with Laura Gaydon March 2017

BWIB photo with Laura Gaydon March 2017Laura Gaydon, Director of SBK, was delighted and honoured to be a finalist in this year’s Banbury Women in Business Awards.

The BWIB awards showcases the very best business women in Banbury and the surrounding area, and Laura was one of 3 finalists in the category “Going the Extra Mile” sponsored by Edd Frost & Daughters, independent funeral directors in Banbury. This category is awarded to an individual or business going that extra mile in providing a high standard of Customer Care. The judges look for evidence of effective customer service provision to include a complaints system and regular monitoring, and how effective customer care has benefited the organisation, its staff and its customers.

The winners were announced at the BWIB annual conference which featured two highly inspirational speakers.

Laura said afterwards, “I am very honoured to have been nominated and made finalist in recognition of my efforts. It was an extremely interesting, inspirational and positive morning listening to the speakers Anna Turney, Paralympian and a truly amazing lady, and Jen Rolfe from Practically Positive whose research has been used by among others the General Medical Council, Friends Life and The Cabinet Office.” 

Laura is pictured above with (L-R) the winner Marianne Allitt, award sponsor Barbara Scrimshaw of Edd Frost & Daughters and finalist Sarka Naivertova.

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Sibford Farming Club Charity Dinner Dance

Thames Valley Air Ambulance with Laura Gaydon SBK

In November 2016 members and guests of the Sibford Farming Club in Oxfordshire held their annual charity Dinner dance at the Cotswolds Hotel & Spa, Chipping Norton and raised £1000 for the local Thames Valley Air Ambulance.

Laura Gaydon, Director of SBK and organiser of the event, commented, “We were thrilled with the support for last year’s Dinner Dance – the event is the highlight of the Club’s social calendar and we were delighted to raise so much money for this really worthwhile cause, which can affect so many of us in the rural community.  The Thames Valley Air Ambulance costs £2,500 per mission, providing life-saving medical care to the counties of Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire 365 days per year and many lives are at risk without this fantastic service”.

Thames Valley Air Ambulance with Laura Gaydon SBK

The £1,000 cheque was presented to Sarah Sharkey of the Thames Valley Air Ambulance by Steve Cocks (Club Chairman) and Laura Gaydon, all pictured above.

The club will be holding their annual dinner dance later this year and for details please contact Laura by email at

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Christmas Colouring Competition

Laura Gaydon with Isla Hill, Daniel Careless, Eleanor Hazelton

This year we decided to hold a Christmas Colouring Competition and invited pupils from Shipston Primary School to take part.

Laura Gaydon with Isla Hill, Daniel Careless, Eleanor Hazelton

L-R: Laura Gaydon, Isla Hill, Daniel Careless, Eleanor Hazelton

Each pupil was asked to design their own Gingerbread House and we were overwhelmed at the response and the high standard of entries received.

The designs were all fabulous and the children showed  immense creativity so it was a very difficult task choosing the winners.

Winning Entry by Daniel Careless

The Winning Entry by Daniel Careless

Judge Laura Gaydon was really torn as to who to pick however it was finally agreed that Daniel Careless (aged 10) was over the overall winner with Isla Hill (aged 5) and Eleanor Hazelton (aged 7) as runners up.

Runner Up - Isla Hill

Runner Up – Isla Hill

The winners were announced in this morning’s assembly at the School and the prize winners were each presented with a book token and a DIY gingerbread house kit by Laura Gaydon and Amy Reed from our Shipston office, Rural Land Agency team.

Runner Up - Eleanor Hazelton

Runner Up – Eleanor Hazelton

Laura said “It was a very tough choice because all the entries were excellent.  Congratulations to Daniel, Isla and Eleanor and well done and thank you to everyone else who took part”.

More entries can be viewed on our Facebook page.

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Congratulations to Kittie Ford

Marcus Faulkner, Kittie Ford, Laura GaydonCongratulations to Kittie Ford from our Rural Land Agency team who has just passed her CAAV exams and qualified as a Fellow of the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers.

The CAAV exam for fellowship consists of a rigorous two day “endurance test” of practical, oral and written assessments on a wide range of practice areas including landlord and tenant, utilities, diversification, planning, estate management, valuation, growing crops, machinery and livestock.

Kittie was presented with a bottle of champagne, a bouquet and her certificate by Marcus Faulkner and Laura Gaydon, Directors at our Shipston office.

Laura Gaydon, a FAAV herself, said “Kittie has worked incredibly hard and we are extremely proud of her achievement”.

At Sheldon Bosley Knight we actively encourage ongoing professional development amongst our staff not only to enable them to progress and grow within their field but to maintain the high quality of services and advice that our clients have come to expect.

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Laura Gaydon Sheldon Bosley Knight

Laura Gaydon Sheldon Bosley KnightFollowing the recent launch/merger of new company Sheldon Bosley Knight Ltd, Laura Gaydon has been promoted to Director of the new business.

Laura, a qualified Rural Chartered Surveyor and Fellow of the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers, joined Sheldon Bosley in 2009 following completion of a BSc (Hons) degree in Equine Science, and a Postgraduate Diploma in Rural Estate and Land Management.

James Walton, one of Laura’s fellow Directors, said “whilst the new company will see the development and expansion of our New Homes department in particular, the roots of our business have been firmly in Land Agency and Agriculture.  It is very pleasing therefore to be able to strengthen the backbone of the business with Laura’s position equivalent to Partner in the old firm.  Laura has shown particular ability, an impressive intelligence and has strong affinity with clients, she is a great asset.”

Recently married, Laura, who is based at the Shipston-on-Stour office, has proven to be an invaluable asset to the expanding Rural Land Agency department and has contributed considerably to the growth and strengthening of this exciting, forward thinking business.  Laura manages the Rural team at the Shipston-on-Stour office and heads up the firms Equine Property Services.

She spent her early years on the family dairy farm in North Oxfordshire which encouraged a deep rooted understanding and passion for the countryside and rural affairs.  A keen horsewoman herself, Laura follows horse racing, attending the Cheltenham Festivals regularly, and also enjoys walking her two dogs.

Sheldon Bosley KnightThrilled to be appointed a Director, Laura said “It is a huge honour and privilege to be invited to be part of the equity of such a well-established and growing, local firm. The company has supported me through gaining my professional qualifications and encouraged a greater involvement in the business over the past 7 years. I am delighted to accept the position and hope to bring further strength and innovation to the future of the business”.

Specialising in Equine Property and RICS Red Book Valuations, Laura also has vast experience of agricultural property sales and lettings, agricultural subsidy and stewardship applications and Tenancies and Contract Farming Agreements.   Keen to always keep abreast of new developments in the Agricultural industry she is a Member of BIAC (The British Institute of Agricultural Consultants) and a Committee Member of Sibford Farming Club.

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Biodiversity Offsetting – 27th Jan 2014

Sheldon Bosley has been monitoring the progress of the Biodiversity Offsetting Scheme Pilot.  Farmers and Developers will be interested in the outcome.


Laura Gaydon MRICS FAAV writes.

Summary of Scheme

  • Biodiversity Offsetting allows Developers to deliver biodiversity benefits in compensation for losses occurring on development sites.  By purchasing ‘credits’ from Landowners who undertake biodiversity management, this relieves the Developer’s responsibility of maintaining their own area of land for biodiversity purposes.
  • Landowners commit to a 30 year management scheme, for creating, protecting or restoring habitats on areas or parcel(s) of land which have been assessed for their biodiversity value, and gain funding for the period of the management agreement.  The funding is paid by Developers who purchase ‘credits’ to counter-act any habitats they may have lost on development sites.  The purchased ‘credits’ should be of similar habitat value and within the locality.
  • Before the Offsetting Scheme is considered, Developers must consider all other options of creating habitats on site, or mitigating before looking at offsetting alternatives.
  • Irreplaceable sites cannot be compensated for, to include SSSIs or ancient woodland.
  • The Scheme acts to compensate for any lost biodiversity by retaining management of other areas of land in the locality.
  • DEFRA have provided a metric scale for assessing the habitat quality on the development site, to include quantity, level of biodiversity, size etc.  The site being put forward by a Landowner will also be assessed and given a number of ‘conservation credits’ which they can sell to developers looking for ‘credits’.Biodiversity 2014


  • Income to Landowners for protecting, improving or creating natural features.
  • Income guaranteed for 30 year period at pre-agreed instalments.
  • Potential income for sites which may have little agricultural benefit/productivity, or with poor access.


  • Landowner tied into 30 year management plan – long period of time to guarantee land taken out of production/management obligations being upheld.
  • Rates of income or credit value are calculated now – but value in 15 or 25 years’ time is very difficult to calculate, particularly if food productivity / gross margins / subsidy increases.
  • The Agreement is a legal contract with land owner– if sold, management obligations must be transferred on sale.
  • There is little or no known funding at present for monitoring and reporting during the Scheme – monitoring will be as stated in the management plan prepared, however will probably be through self-assessment by the landowner – photos, invoices, site inspection.
  • Dual funding and compatibility with ELS/Basic Payment Scheme and EFAs not known (DEFRA consultation not yet completed).
  • This will be in addition to CIL/Section 106 – ultimately costs of ‘offsetting’ will come out of the original Landowner’s pocket (who owns original development site).
  • The farmer or landowner has to outlay fees upfront for preparing a management plan and undertaking an ecological survey – no guarantee of acceptance into Scheme, therefore costs may not be recovered from Developer.
  • Potential issues for APR/BPR if areas of land are taken out of production and main income or activity is not agricultural.
  • Consideration needs to be given in preparation of Promotion Agreements – difficult to calculate the value of credits or offsetting costs at present.
  • Legal agreement between Environment Bank and Landowner will need careful review by legal adviser – extra expense for Landowner.

Further Comments:

  • Suggest an Adviser is needed throughout management plan to review Scheme and provide advice if management prescriptions are not working – funding for this unknown.
  • If prescriptions are not working, how can the Landowner resolve these issues without being penalised/paying back money to date?
  • Contingency costs need to be built into the management plan.Biodiversity
  • Income to be index-linked or interest-linked, but how can prices in 2014 reflect those in 2024 and 2034 onwards?
  • DEFRA Consultation on interaction with Stewardship and Basic Payment Scheme etc not yet released.
  • Six official pilots ongoing at present – Warwickshire is one.  Natural England are overseeing pilot schemes and will provide results at the end of the pilot period – Spring 2014.

Examples of Management:

  • Woodland Restoration;Biodiversity planting
  • Woodland Replanting;
  • Hedgerow Restoration, to include gapping up, coppicing, laying;
  • Grassland Management, to include low input grassland, restoration of species-rich meadows etc;
  • Reducing stocking rates;
  • Reverting arable land to permanent pasture/field corners;
  • Buffer strips;
  • Management of scrub;
  • Management of bankside vegetation adjacent to watercourses.

For more information contact Laura Gaydon 01608 661666 or