Foal at television's Cannon Hall Farm triumphs at the Great Yorkshire Show after near tragedy

Two brothers from Barnsley whose daily life on their farm has been made into a series were celebrity attractions at the Great Yorkshire Show this week.

Robert and David Nicholson are two of three brothers, including Richard, who work Cannon Hall Farm and appear on Springtime on the Farm, The Yorkshire Vet and also the Channel 5 programme The Great Yorkshire Show.

They have been regulars at the show many times and this year feared for the life of a foal who ended up taking a second place in the Mare and Foal Shire classes, while in between being stopped for selfies and chats by television viewers.

The foal was born on April 10 and within a couple of hours they realised she wasn’t acting as normal and called in the emergency vet.

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    The Nicholson farming family with the Mare and Foal that took second at The Great Yorkshire Show after a health scare for the foal earlier this year.

    She was diagnosed with a rare condition called ‘dummy foal’ syndrome which means she thought she was still in the womb, wouldn’t eat, was getting no milk and just wanted to sleep.

    As the foal continued to deteriorate they ended up driving her to an equestrian vet where she was kept in for treatment for a further eight days.

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    The farming brothers said that she has “never looked back” since and was returned to the mare.

    Barnsley farmer David Nicholson with his foal, who after a health scare when she was born, impressed at The Great Yorkshire Show.

    David Nicholson said: “I have never seen it and they were the longest eight days of my life. The vet was pessimistic but gradually got more optimistic. After it came back it was thrilling to see it dancing around with its mum.”

    Robert added: “People have said if she had a normal upbringing she would be way ahead of where she is and has real promise.”

    There are only 850 breeding female Shire horses in the country so it is hoped the farm can add to its breeding programme.

    Equestrian events at the Great Yorkshire Show will be highlighted again tomorrow as the 163rd show draws to a close.

    Riding fans will be able to watch qualifying sessions for the Horse of the Year competition in the morning, scurry with driven ponies, the Heavy Horse championship and top class show jumping. There are also displays of side-saddle riding and from Riding for the Disabled.