Sparsholt College and University Centre Sparsholt have been proud to announce that their Animal Management Centre (AMC) and Equine Centre teams have been awarded the Pride of Winchester Award by the Mayor of Winchester. Cllr Patrick Cunningham.  

These teams were nominated by the College for their incredible hard work during the national lockdown period earlier this year. With most students and staff members working and learning remotely and online, staff from these teams, other areas of college and even Principal Julie Milburn went above and beyond their normal duties to ensure the excellent standards of husbandry and welfare continued to be delivered to the animals living at Sparsholt’s countryside campus.  

At the AMC, 1200 animals across 200 different species still required their daily care, normally delivered largely by students studying Animal Studies. This includes exotic animals such as Red Pandas and Black Lemurs, to a wide variety of reptiles such as the resident African Dwarf Crocodile, and smaller mammals like rabbits and degus.  

Across campus at the BHS Approved Equine Centre 65 horses remained on site during lockdown, and still required daily exercise, mucking out, and care that Equine students would normally take on as part of their studies. Some staff members even temporarily moved onto site to ensure work could continue. 

Mark Treagust, Assistant Principal of Animal Management, Sport, and Equine Studies at Sparsholt College commended the tireless efforts of these staff members, stating “At the start of lockdown, there was a huge task on hand for Sparsholt staff still working on campus to ensure all the animals and horses were still being cared for to the highest standard.” 

“The teams have gone above and beyond to maintain motivational, enthusiastic and professional standards and we are so proud of everyone’s hard work. 

The Pride of Winchester Award was created to recognise and thank local ‘unsung heroes’ whose dedication and selflessness during lockdown made a positive impact on the Winchester community. The Mayor of Winchester commented “We have seen local people making sacrifices to help others in their community and during the very worst of times, we have seen the very best in human nature. These awards are just a small token of our appreciation to all those individuals and businesses and our chance to say thank you to our local heroes.” 

“We know there are so many people in the district who have shown us what true community spirit really is and I am proud to be able to celebrate this with a public gesture of recognition on behalf of Winchester City Council.” 

Find out more about Sparsholt College and UCS’ facilities at our next open day, Saturday 6 February and