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A Message from Gerry Eckersley
Chairman & Show Manager Dogs in Need Agility Society Ltd

Welcome one and all -

After 18 months of organising the 2012 show, producing seven days of blistering sunshine and six days of agility, I am now sitting at home after walking the dogs through flooded fields. I live on the Nene Valley and the dogs just love it! This weather reminds me of the general trend of agility during 2012 with numerous shows cancelled through floods and wet fields. After 20 years would this have been the same for Dogs In Need? The Ipswich the Suffolk County Show was cancelled for one day due to bad weather, the first time in its history!

I thought the only hope was to take on the services of a Sun God for the week and with the support of campers and Facebook, the Sun God came good and delivered seven days of beautiful sunshine, sometimes too hot for the dogs to run. Fortunately everyone was sensible with their dogs making sure they had plenty of shade.

Top trainers who gave their time to Junior handlersAnd the people, well they could cool down in the Quiet Dog Inn. Dogs In Need is an agility holiday for seven days with many facilities on site to cater for all. Two nightclubs, (Whispers and the Quiet Dog Inn). Food facilities on site include an on site shop, trade stands offering cooked meals and snacks, ice cream, coffee and cream teas. And this year we had a very spicy, famous celebrity greeting everyone on his or her arrival.

Recreational activities including football, rounders, table tennis etc., together with Junior agility training by top agility handlers from the UK and abroad. Agility for all grades including Championship, even if you are only just starting in agility you will find that you are catered for and treated the same as all other competitors. You may make new friends. Even if you don't win, we hope you enjoy the experience. The main aim is for all to enjoy the week with lots of laughs. You can see the best agility dogs and handlers displaying their skills.

When our overheads are paid, however, should there be a profit, then various charities receive a donation from Dogs in Need Agility Society. None of the DINAS committee receives a wage or honorarium for their work, and over the last 20 years we have donated well in excess of 150,000 to various canine charities. Last year we elected to change our constitution enabling us to donate to other human charities, and as a consequence a donation was made to each of the following:-

  • 1000 Alzheimer's Society
    Leading the fight against dementia. The leading UK care and research charity for people with this disease and other dementias, providing support to their families and carers.

  • 1000 British Heart Foundation
    BHF is a charity that aims to prevent people dying from heart diseases.

  • 1000 Combat Stress. (The Enemy Within)
    A small but significant number of veterans leave the Armed Forces with psychological wounds. These can lead to depression, phobias, anxiety, relationship problems and, in some cases Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Combat Stress works with veterans of the Armed Forces and members of the Reserve Forces, through effective treatment and support for mental health problems. All services are FREE to the veteran, and are only made possible through statutory, non-statutory and voluntary fund raising. Amongst other benefits, Combat Stress offers a 24-hour Helpline; Outpatient Clinics, Community Outreach Services, and specialist clinical treatment at three short stay treatment centres in Shropshire, Surrey & Ayrshire.

  • 2000 East Anglian Air Ambulance
    Serving the counties of Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk. This service provides FAST clinical expertise medical crews possess enhanced clinical skills, which exceed those of road ambulance crews.

  • 1000 Harley Staples Cancer Trust
    At only eight years old, Harley was diagnosed with a rare Leukaemia in January of 2009. He faced so many tests and treatments, but like a brave soldier, he smiled and laughed everyday. Sadly Harley lost his battle, but in his memory his parents are fundraising to build a purpose built holiday home for teenagers to use FREE with their families, enabling them to enjoy fresh air and respite away from hospital

  • 1000 Prostate Cancer UK
    Helping to discover lifesaving new drugs to treat this disease.

  • 1000 The Spinal Injuries Association
    A user-lead, national charity, providing support and information for the Spinal Chord Injured Community.

In addition to these donations, a further 2,700 was raised at the show on the Macmillan Nurses Run, making a grand total of 11,700.00.

We are only able to donate these amounts through the help of all the volunteers that offer their services free of charge, our generous sponsors and of course all the competitors entering the show. I would like to offer my personal thanks to all our helpers in 2012. This was our best year for help and support, and we could not do it without you.

2013 news
There will be a few changes for 2013, but we will keep you up to date on the website. The first and biggest change is that hard copy schedules will NOT be posted out to last year's competitors due to the increase in postal costs and, people telling us no one reads it!

Together with the DINAS Committee, I wish you a Happy New Year and look forward to seeing you all at Trinity Park, Ipswich in 2013.