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The Kilmannan Stud was formed in 1992 by myself  Bill Ireland at Kilmannan Farm, Blanefield, By Glasgow G63 9AX.

I was born in Essex at Colchester and was educated at The Colchester Royal Grammar School, from whence I entered the family business in Colchester
H.E.Williams & Co Ltd which was an Ironmongers and Agricultural Machinery business. In 1963 the family business merged with another Colchester family business H.L. Griffin & Co Ltd and started to trade as Williams & Griffin Ltd, within two years the Griffin Premises had been sold and the Williams High Street premises had been developed to form an Independent Department Store. At the same time as the store was being developed we took over another family business in the town A.& E.P. Baker a local ladies fashion store, and at a later date a fourth family business was added Heasman & Son a local jewellers. This made the business very unique as the Company now comprised of four local family businesses all with over 100 years establishment in the town. In 1964 I became a Director and on my Fathers death in 1972 became Chairman and Managing Director. Today I still remain Chairman but no longer take a full active part in the business.

I came to Scotland in 1985 to set up and run Auchineden Estate, a sheep and cattle operation which due to the downturn in sheep and cattle sales was sold in 1992. I remained in Scotland and set up the Dales Pony Stud.

The Stud began when I purchased an unregistered Dales type gelding called  “Oliver” who was over twenty years old. Oliver was broken to ride & drive and he was driven in Private Driving & In Hand classes for a few years and was very popular. As Oliver although very fit was getting old I decided to purchase a replacement and decided to purchase a stallion against all advice and so “Slaypits Black Magic” entered the scene.

He was primarily bought to drive but soon after he arrived I took him to the Lomondside Stud (The Misses Rennies) for an appraisal. Pat Rennie rode him round the indoor school and stated that it was likened to sitting in an armchair. It was decided that he should be entered into Novice Ridden classes for that year, he qualified for the “Picton” and was ninth at the final at N.P.S. Summer Championships that year. The following year the Rennies had their own New Forest pony to show so he went to Miss Pamela Brown of Dumfries who bought him on to win many major shows and appeared at Olympia twice and on the second occasion was Reserve Champion. Since Magic arrived mares were purchased and youngsters arrived and we now have 27 Dales Ponies at the last count. In 1997 a colt Lowside Diamond whom I purchased in October 1990 was sent to Mr Richard Telford for appraisal, it was soon apparent that he had potential for both In Hand and Ridden competition, Richard took him to Olympia in 1998 and was joint tenth. 

1999 has been an exceptional year as Slaypits Black Magic went to Wiltshire with Miss Lizzie Briant and has qualified for both the M & M ridden finals at Wembley and Olympia. Lowside Diamond was again with Mr Richard Telford and has also qualified for both the M & M ridden finals at Wembley and Olympia. Richard Telford has also had another Colt Village Defender which  I purchased in 1997, this pony is also going to Wembley having qualified for the Templeton In Hand Championship. These qualifiers together with numerous successes at home with home bred ponies being shown In Hand sired by Slaypits Black Magic has made 1999 a truly magnificent year.

2000 was another exceptional year, Slaypits Black Magic was produced at home
and was Supreme In-Hand Champion at the Royal Northern Spring Show and Royal Lancashire Show. Kilmannan Black Bramble was Supreme Ridden Champion at The Border Union Show, Champion Overall Novice W.H.P. at the N.P.S. Summer Champions Show and finished third at Wembley in her class in the Simpson Refractories M & M Pony of the year final. Kilmannan Black Pearl was Champion M & M Ridden at the East Anglian Native Pony Society Show and qualified for Olynpia, Champion Open Mixed M & M Ridden at Ponies U.K. Summer Championships, 1st in her class at Wembley in the  Simpson Refractories M & M Ridden Pony of the Year and Reserve Champion overall at Olympia at the N.P.S/
Baileys Horse Feeds Pony of the Year final.

2001 yet another good year as Kilmannan Black Bramble qulaified for Wembley again and was placed third in her class in the Simpson Refractories M & M Ridden Pony of the Year final. Kilmannan Black Piper had a good year and was Overall Supreme Ridden Cham[pion at Ponies U.K. Winter Championships Show
Kilmannan Black Pearl was Supreme Ridden Champion at Area 5 N.W. Championships Show and qulaified for Olympia, Gold Medal Winner at N.P.S. Summer Championships Show at Malvern and was Champion Overall of the Traxdata Kingsford Ridden M & M Pony of the Year. Kilmannan Black Wixard was Supreme Champion M & M In-Hand and Reserve Overall In-Hand Champion.

2002 an exceptionally good year for the Stud, Slaypits Rosie was M & M Champion at The National Stallion Show at Perth and Champion M & M In-Hand at The Royal Highland Show. Kilmannan Jubilee was Champion M & M In-Hand, and M & M Novice Ridden at Ponies U.K. Winter Championships. Village Defender was Champion Overall M & M In-Hand at N.P.S. Scotland Summer Championship Show, Supreme M & M In-Hand at North of England In-Hand Championship Show, Supreme In-Hand at Royal Lancashire Show and Reserve Champion Overall in the Glyn Greenwood In-Hand Championship final at Ponies U.K. Summer Championship Show. Kilmannan Black Velvet was Champion 
M & M Novice Ridden at West Midlands Stallion Show and Champion N.P.S/
Picton Novice Ridden Pony at N.P.S. Summer Championship Show. Of course our "Star" of the year was Kilmannan Black Pearl who was Champion Ridden M & M Pony at West Midlands Stallion Show, Champion M & M Ridden at N.P.S. Area 5 N.W. Championship Show, Champion M & M Ridden at the Royal Show, Winner of the Gold Medal Ridden for the second year running at N.P.S. Summer Championship Show, Champion Kingsforsd M & M Ridden Pony, Reserve Champion overall at Wembley Simpson Refractories M & M Ridden Pony of the Year final and Overall winner and Champion at the N.P.S. Baileys Horse Feeds Ridden Pony of the Year final at Olympia.

2003 saw the retirement of Kilmannan Black Pearl to stud and was put in foal to Village Defender. Richard Telford had a successful year with Pear's full sister Kilmannan Black Velvet and took her to Olympia where she was placed third overall a great acheivement in her first year in open ridden classes. She also qualified for the Simpsons Refractory final at H.O.Y.S. but was unable to take part due to an illness the night before the show. She however soon recovered and took the Gold Medal Ridden Championship at N.P.S. Summer Championships Show. Kilmannan Jubilee had a very good year in the capable hands of Pamela Brown and won many competitions and was second in the Dales, Fell & Highlands class at the Simpsons Refractory M & M Pure Bred Pony of the Year final at H.O.Y.S. 

2004 has been an exciting year so far two foals have arrived Dartdale Mazie has a filly foal (Kilmannan Primrose) by Village Defender and Raecleugh Peggy has a colt foal Kilmannan Cloud) by Slaypits Black Magic. Unfortunately Pearl lost her foal at birth and has since been put back into foal to Village Defender. Richard has qualified Velvet for both the Simpsons Refractory M & M Pure Bred Pony of the Year (H.O.Y.S.) and N.P.S./Baileys Horse Feeds M & M Supreme Ridden (Olympia) Pony of the Year finals. Village Defender has also qualified for the Simpsons Refractory M & M Pure Bred Pony of the Year (H.O.Y.S.) final. Kilmannan Sapphire has so far competed in 9 in-hand shows and has been 1st eight times and 2nd once. Kilmannan Jubilee has also been lightly shown in-hand with great success.

2005 and another year passes, four foals this year Dartdale Mazie has a filly foal (Kilmannan Blossom) by Kilmannan Jubilee who is going to America in the Spring 2006, Kilmannan Pearl has a colt foal (Kilmannan Robert the Bruce) by Village Defender, Slaypits Rosie has a colt foal (Kilmannan Rob Roy) by Village Defender and Raecleugh Peggy has a filly foal (Kilmannan Princess) by Slaypits Black Magic. Richard and Defender qualified for both Simpsons Refractories M & M Pur Bred M & M of the Year (HOYS) and N.P.S./Baileys Horse Feeds M & M Supreme Ridden (Olympia) M & M Pony of the Year and was Reserve Champion at both. Kilmannan Sapphire had another good year In-Hand taking 11 1st's & four 2nd's and numerous Championships including four Supremes. Kilmannan Black Velvet also competed three times in-hand collecting 2 1st's and a 2nd , a Reserve Champoinship, Reserve Supreme and a Supreme. We have three ponies in foal for 2006.