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The Earliest Agility Test
Check out the photograph that was taken at the very first agility event after it was originally performed at Crufts Dog Show in February 1978. Spot any differences?
An Early Agility Test in B/W
This photograph (left) was taken at the very first agility event after it was originally performed at Crufts Dog Show in February 1978. Can you spot five (5) differences from 22 years ago? Extra points if you can find more and a bone-us if you can name the judge and handler. (09/10/00)
The First Ever Agility Course at Crufts 1978
Ever wonder about those early days of agility? In his book How to Judge Agility, Peter Lewis, one of the founders of the sport, claims that in the beginning no one had a clue about developing the art of agility. For the first year, they floundered through but had a lot of fun doing so.  A rare glimpse
into agility history when handlers and their dogs made up the game as they went along. How things have changed!
Thank you to Peter Lewis for preserving and sharing the first course ever run at Crufts. 


Founding History: The True Facts by Peter Lewis
Dog agility is a fairly new sport, created merely as a demonstration in the late 1970s in the UK. Little did Peter Meanwell think in 1977 when John Varley asked him for assistance in devising an entertainment for the audience between the Obedience and Breed competitions in the main ring at Crufts that the largely jumping style course would develop into an international national dogging sport. The rest, as they say, is history.

John Gilbert - A Tribute 1942 - 2017
People new to Agility may not have recognised the well dressed, slightly built man with a pencil moustache and a permanent smile on his face often seen at shows across the country. Nor would they have known about his immeasurable contribution to the our sport. His name was John Gilbert, and he was there when Agility was just a sideshow to the main event. He went on to played an important part in the history our sport and did much to influence what we do today.
Steve Croxford, Vice Chairman of the Board of the Kennel Club , tells us a little more about his life and accomplishments.

Gerald Fox Was There
Gerald Fox was a member of Lincolnshire Alsatian All Breeds Training Society when Peter Meanwell put together a team to do a demonstration at Crufts. It was meant to be a one-off, but instead it has become an annual international agility event on the dog calendar. It was a long time ago and something he will always remember.

Interview with Peter Lewis Founding Father
Lindy Margach speaks to one of the 'founding fathers' of our sport the legendary Peter Lewis about what he remembers about the early days, how it developed and what he thinks is the future.
Peter Lewis In Retrospect
A short summary of Peter Lewis' life could read something like... got a dog, trained it, won a few trials, wrote some books, developed rules for some new dog pastimes, visited some countries promoting them, owned some more dogs, reinvented his interests and made a success of that, too. But, as with most people, there is much more to his life than this. Steve Croxford looks back and reflects upon what Peter meant to the agility world.
Trevor Jones Remembers
It may have been John Varley's idea to do a dog jumping competition to fill the spare time in the Crufts Main Arena between the Obedience Championship and the Group Breed judging, but it was left to Peter Meanwell to organise the demonstration. He turned to his long-time friend Trevor Jones of the Yorkshire Working Trials Club to provide a team of four dogs. Trevor wrote  this brief account for Agilitynet about the first time he heard of Agility.
We Happy Few
Did you know that the person placed in charge of running Crufts 1978 Main Ring events knew nothing about dog training? Instead, he had horse background. He, therefore, asked senior Kennel Club staff if there was someone who could put together a 'dog jumping event' similar to Show Jumping for horses and was pointed in the direction of Peter Meanwell. And that's how Peter Meanwell became one of Agility's founding fathers, and rightly so. Peter Lewis was there to see it all.

Fred Welham Interview
John Leslie meets Fred Welham, the man who is credited with having built the first set of agility equipment from planks of wood, a door and an old tyre. Reprinted from the July edition of the Kennel Gazette.



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