George Lane Fox, the founder of Bramham international horse trials died at his home in Wetherby, West Yorkshire on 9 October aged 81.
George was the ninth generation of the Lane Fox clan to live at Bramham Park and he started what became one of the UK’s most popular CIC and CCI*** three day events.
Like his father before him, George joined the Household Cavalry where he spent 20 years before returning home to manage the family estate. He successfully developed the farming and forestry side of the business, but it was the horse trials that were his real passion.
The first competiton back in 1973 was a one day event, with George organising the whole event – even designing the course himself. The following year it was run as a three-day event and within seven years it had been upgraded to international status.
George was an avid fan of eventing and took great satisfaction from seeing riders and horses, that had started their career on his estate, competing internationally.
This year’s trials were the biggest and best to date, as Bramham was one of the few events to continue despite the rain. As such, they were the last chance for many riders to qualify for London 2012, and the competition was extended to an extra 100 entrants with riders from 12 nations taking part.
George eldest son, Nick said: “I will always remember dad taking me, as a boy, to choose trees to turn into his cross-country fences and I’ll keep a picture in my mind of him sitting at the marquee door, greeting every guest, at the Bramham Cocktail Party. His tenacity in keeping the horse trials going for the first 10 years, when it cost him money, is an example to me and everybody else.”