|Hill House Stables
|If you can provide any photos associated with this stable, or additional information to fill any gaps then contact firstname.lastname@example.org
|1950-1965 Captain C T A Carlos Clarke
Charles Thomas Alexander Carlos Clarke, was born 16th December 1915 at South Kensington, London, to Charles, an Army Officer and his wife Lady Eileen Knox, daughter of the 5th Earl of Ranfurly. Carlos Clarke, universally known as was Sandy, was famously given a present of a diamond pin by the future King Edward VIII when Carlos Clarke was a boy. He hunted with the Quorn in Leicestershire, and after Eton he joined the North Somerset Yeomanry, commissioned as a Second Lieutenant on 12th October 1940. He trained at Achnacarry, to the north of Fort William, in 1943 and fought at Normandy but was wounded on 14th June 1944. He remained in military service until November 1947, and was then offered a job as assistant to Fulke Walwyn, who had married Carlos Clarke's sister Diana, at Saxon House Stables. Shortly afterwards Carlos Clarke married Barbara Bracey, daughter of a Lambourn farmer, and began traing at Delamere on the Folly Road. In 1950 he sold the diamond pin given to him by Edward VIII to another Lambourn farmer in exchange for 2 acres of land and £50 in cash. This was sufficient for him to build Hill House Stables on Folly Road, Lambourn along with 24 stables. In 1962 it increased to 62 stables, but was later reduced to 40. Carlos Clarke so enjoyed his time in the Army that he named many of his horses after commandos. Among his horses were 4 Commando, SS Commando, British Commando, Army Commando and Air-Commando. Lady E Chappell owned 4 Commando and was keen to give the speech at the Gimcrack dinner. She ensured that 4 Commando was just one of 5 acceptors for the 1952 Gimcrack which had, at that point, never been won by a lady. Arguably his best win was in the 1955 Ascot Stakes at Royal Ascot when Wildnor defied his 25/1 odds to win for owner J O Williams.
Carlos Clarke particularly excelled in the cold winter months because his gallops were superior to others round about when the ground was icy, so his horses were easier to get fit. He remained at Hill House until 1965, giving up training for medical reasons, after which Paul Cole replaced him. Carlos Clarke and his wife remained in Lambourn and he died on Monday 5th May 2003 aged 87.
1952 Weston T-Y-O Plate at Birmingham 4 COMMANDO 7/4 fav owned by Lady E Chappell, trained by C Carlos Clarke and ridden by T Hawcroft
1953 Cuddington Stakes at Epsom SS COMMANDO 13/2 trained by Carlos Clarke and ridden by Lester Piggott
1955 Ascot Stakes at Royal Ascot WILDNOR 25/1 owned by J O Williams, trained by Carlos-Clark and ridden by C Gaston
1957 Thatcham Handicap at Newbury BRITISH COMMANDO 20/1 trained by Carlos Clarke and ridden by David Greening
|I am grateful to Ordnance Survey (© Crown Copyright) for permission to use the 1830 map shown above.
1968-1986 Paul Cole
Paul F I Cole, born on 11th September 1941, was not born into a racing family; his grandfather was a Wiltshire farmer until the War began to eat into his profits and he had to sell the land. His father had no association with horse racing, so Paul was unusual in that he was an outsider who worked his way to the top. Few trainers can boast sending out 5 Derby winners, including the 1991 Epsom Derby winner Generous. Similarly, few trainers can claim to have recorded 21 Royal Ascot winners and be top Royal Ascot trainer in 1992, so Paul can rightfully claim his place near the top of the all-time trainers table. He was educated at Kings School, Taunton, and then joined Les Kennard in the West Country. He was fortunate to be with George Todd at Manton at a time when Todd was hitting the headlines, and then Cole moved to Richmond Sturdy's stable at Shrewton where he spent 3 years gaining further experience before he felt that the time was right to set off on his own training career. He began his training career in 1968 at Hill House Stables, Lambourn, taking over from Charles Carlos Clarke, and remained there for 17 years until 1986. In his first season his winners included Optimistic Pirate, Red Hot Pirate, May's Folly and My Matt. The year 1974 was good for Paul, he won the Zetland Gold Cup at Redcar with Owenboliska, who had already won 5 races the previous season, and sent out 5 runners in 5 Ladies races, winning 5 thanks to Brooke Sanders. On the back of such success his string increased to 70 in 1975. In 1979 he won the valuable Hungerford Stakes at Newbury with the David Rowland owned Skyliner. Paul moved to the famous Whatcombe Estate, Berkshire in 1987, from where Arthur Budgett sent out the Derby winners Morston and Blakeney, and his career really took off, especially after he teamed up with Prince Fahd Salman. As well as winning the 1990 St Leger with Snurge, and the 1991 Derby with Generous, he was crowned Champion Flat trainer in 1991 and went from strength to strength.
1973 Lammas Three-year-old Plate at Warwick OWENBOLISKA 15/2 owned by Vincent Kilkenny, trained by Paul Cole and ridden by Robert Edmondson
1973 Dorset Three-year-old Handicap at Salisbury OWENBOLISKA 6/1 owned by Vincent Kilkenny, trained by Paul Cole and ridden by Robert Edmondson
1973 Pavilion Handicap at Brighton OWENBOLISKA 3/1 owned by Vincent Kilkenny, trained by Paul Cole and ridden by Robert Edmondson
1973 Paddock Three-year-old Handicap at Haydock OWENBOLISKA 9/4 owned by Vincent Kilkenny, trained by Paul Cole and ridden by Bruce Raymond
1973 Tolly Cobbold Trophy at Newmarket OWENBOLISKA 6/1 owned by Vincent Kilkenny, trained by Paul Cole and ridden by Bruce Raymond
1974 Zetland Gold Cup at Redcar OWENBOLISKA 7/1 owned by Vincent Kilkenny, trained by Paul Cole and ridden by Robert Edmondson
1978 Fillies International Stakes at Kempton SHAPINA 4/1 owned by Eric Badger, trained by Paul Cole and ridden by Geoff Baxter
1979 Hungerford Stakes at Newbury SKYLINER 10/1 owned by David Rowland, trained by Paul Cole and ridden by Geoff Baxter
1987-1991 Bryan Smart (From 1991-2000 he occupied the Sherwood section of Hill House)
Bryan Smart, born in Royston near Barnsley, South Yorkshire on 26th September 1956, is the son and grandson of miners, while his mother worked in a shirt factory. He always had an interest in horses, leaving home aged 15 to join Jenny Pitman's training establishment while she was still a point-to-point trainer, although it wasn't until 1st April 1975 that he rode his first winner, Menophon at Uttoxeter. He also gained further experience working for Paul Cole and Ken Cundell before riding for Fred Winter at Uplands Stables. In total he rode more than 200 winners, the most high-profile of which were the 1980 Massey Ferguson Gold Cup on Bueche Giorod, False Note in the 1976 Foxhunters Chase at Cheltenham, and a year later Watafella in the 1977 Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter, albeit after a complaint was lodged by Jenny Pitman after the horse had finished third at 25/1 behind No Scotch 50/1 and Evander. Jenny had realized that the first 2 were not qualified to run, so were later disqualified. In 1982 Bryan's riding career was brought to an abrupt end at Huntingdon when he broke a leg, foot, ankle and got a cracked skull, so he turned his hand to training. In 1986 he began training at Hill House, Lambourn where he remained for 4 years until in 1992 Bryan took over that part of Hill House, 22 boxes, which was then named Sherwood, where he remained until 2000. He gained his first Group 1 winner in 1996 when Sila Sila landed the valuable Prix de Diane Hermes at Chantilly. Between March 2000 and September 2002 Bryan occupied Berkeley House Stables, winning the Stewards Cup at the Glorious Goodwood Festival with Bond Boy. He then made a radical decision. In October 2002 Bryan, his wife Vicky and daughter Beth left Lambourn, transferring to historic Hambleton House, Thirsk on the edge of the beautiful North Yorkshire moors.
1976 Foxhunters Chase at Cheltenham FALSE NOTE 11/4 fav trained by J Horton and ridden by Bryan Smart
1977 Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter WATAFELLA 25/1 trained by Jenny Pitman and ridden by Bryan Smart
1980 Massey Ferguson Gold Cup BUECHE GIOROD 14/1 trained by Jenny Pitman and ridden by Bryan Smart
1995 European Breeders Fund Maiden Stakes at Warwick SILA SILA 50/1 owned by Turquoise Trading Ltd, trained by Bryan Smart and ridden by Seb Sanders
1995 Newgate Stud Radley Listed Stakes at Newbury SILA SILA 25/1 owned by Turquoise Trading Ltd, trained by Bryan Smart and ridden by Ray Cochrane
1996 Prix de Diane Hermes Group 1 at Chantilly SILA SILA 30/1 owned by Turquoise Trading Ltd, trained by Bryan Smart and ridden by Cash Asmussen
1998 St Leger Yearling Stakes at Doncaster BOOMERANG BLADE 20/1 owned by John W Ford, trained by Bryan Smart and ridden by J Stack
1999 London International Television Stakes at Kempton DON PUCCINI 9/2 owned by The Tenors, trained by Bryan Smart and ridden by J Stack
1999 Weatherby's Super Sprint at Newbury DON PUCCINI 10/1 owned by The Tenors, trained by Bryan Smart and ridden by J Stack
2002 Stewards Cup at Glorious Goodwood BOND BOY 14/1 owned by R C Bond, trained by Bryan Smart and ridden by Chris Catlin
1991-1998 John Hills (Hill House section)
John William Hills, oldest son of Barry and Maureen Hills, was born on 25th September 1960 and was followed 3 years later by twins Michael and Richard. While the twins forged careers as jockeys, John remained a keen amateur jockey and became an adept trainer. His earliest ride as an amateur was at the age of 16 when partnering Matinale (5/1) to success in the historic 306th Newmarket Town Plate on Thursday 14th October 1976, defeating Marie Tinkler on Rowdy Elf. At that time the Town Plate was still recognisable from the Articles presented by King Charles II in 1665, with the first running taking place in 1666. The 1976 version was still run on the second Thursday in October over the Round Course, although it was impractical to run the race in heats. By 2006 the decision makers abandoned the sacred second Thursday in October for an August date, and some purists thought it marked the end of the Town Plate's links with King Charles II. In 2022 it was run in July, not over the Round Course but over just 2 miles, making it literally half the race which King Charles had decreed. John's first ride under the Rules of Racing was aboard Humdoleila (4/7 fav) at Redcar on Tuesday 1st August 1978 in the Rosedale Amateur Riders Stakes which he won by 4 lengths. It was the first of his 21 winning rides, the best of which was aboard the Josh Gifford trained Lumen in the 1979 Moet & Chandon Silver Magnum at Epsom. However, it was always more likely that the twins would become successful jockeys while John was destined to join the training ranks. He enjoyed a good grounding in the art of training through Eddie O'Grady, Tom Jones at Newmarket, John Gosden and Colin Hayes in Australia before becoming assistant to Barry at South Bank Stables. When his father was offered the prestigious job at Manton in November 1986 John oversaw the stables for a short time before taking on the trainers license in early 1987, marrying Fiona in the same year, the marriage being blessed with 4 daughters, Jessica, Olivia, Martha and Isabella. He quickly marked his arrival to the training ranks with a win by Sanamer in the April Maiden Mile at Pontefract on 23rd April 1987 when partnered by his brother Michael. Although he had limited success in high profile races during his time at South Bank, he later won the 1993 Old Newton Cup with Glide Path, the 1994 Chester Vase with Broadway Flyer, the 1995 Group 1 Aral-Pokal in Germany with Wind in her Hair, the 1996 Newbury Spring Cup with Royal Philosopher, the 1999 Hong Kong Mile with Docksider and his sole Royal Ascot success in the 2000 Queen Alexandra Stakes with Dominant Duchess. In late 1990 Barry Hills time at Manton came to an end and he needed to reclaim his old South Bank Stables, so John moved elsewhere in Lambourn to the Hill House yard where Paul Cole had once trained successfully. He remained at Hill House Stables for 7 years before transferring to The Croft, Upper Lambourn.
1993 Old Newton Cup at Haydock GLIDE PATH 20/1 owned by The Jampot Partnership, trained by John Hills and ridden by Richard Hills
1994 Chester Vase at Chester BROADWAY FLYER 4/5 fav owned by S Al Kabeer, trained by John Hills and ridden by Michael Hills
1995 Aral-Pokal Group 1 at Gelsenkerchen WIND IN HER HAIR owned by Mrs David Nagle, trained by John Hills and ridden by Richard Hills
1996 Newbury Spring Cup ROYAL PHILOSOPHER 25/1 owned by A N Miller, trained by John Hills and ridden by Michael Hills
1999 Hong Kong Mile at Sha Tin DOCKSIDER 23/20 owned by Gary Tanaka, trained by John Hills and ridden by Olivier Peslier
2000 Queen Alexandra Stakes at Royal Ascot DOMINANT DUCHESS 7/1 owned by Mrs Diana Patterson, trained by John Hills and ridden by Richard Quinn
|2000-2001 David Bridgwater
David Bridgwater, born on 5th January 1972 at Knowle, Solihull into a racing family where each member of the family played a role. His father Ken trained the horses, ably assisted by David's elder brother Kenny, but at that point David was not fully committed to the racing game, although he did ride out with the string aged 12. After leaving school he moved to Eve Lodge Stables, Newmarket, owned by Lester Piggott and his wife Susan, who were just starting their training campaign. Although David became too heavy to carve out a Flat career, he switched to jumping and recorded a win at the 1991 Cheltenham Festival on Winnie The Witch 33/1 in the County Handicap Hurdle. He spent 4 years with David Nicholson and then, in 1992 he joined Nigel Twiston-Davies. He later became part of the team of legendary trainer Martin Pipe where winning was commonplace. In the 1996-97 season he began questioning whether he wanted the hard day to day slog of a top jockey and in 1998, after a heavy fall, he decided to call a halt to his riding career. Although he did not win the Aintree Grand National, he was second in 1996 on Encore un Peu behind Rough Quest, but by then he had already chalked up a Grand National win in the 1994 Scottish Grand National on Earth Summit.
When one door closes another one opens; David launched his training career at Hill House Stables, Lambourn in 2000, remarkably winning with the first 3 horses he sent out. He remained at Hill House for a year before transferring to Slade Barn Stables, Gloucestershire before moving again to Wyck Farm, close to Stow-on-the-Wold.
1991 County Handicap Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival WINNIE THE WITCH 33/1 trained by Ken Bridgwater and ridden by David Bridgwater
1994 Scottish Grand National at Ayr EARTH SUMMIT 16/1 owned by R I Sims, trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies and ridden by David Bridgwater
2003-2005 A P Jones
When David Bridgwater left Hill House for Gloucestershire the stables were occupied by A P Jones for the next 3 years. One of his favourite tracks was Brighton where he gained the majority of his winners, and his most successful horse was Mr Whizz. He moved out in 2005 and was replaced by Paul Blockley.
2004 Kidz Play Handicap at Ayr DARK RAIDER 100/30 owned by T G N Burrage, trained by A P Jones and ridden by Dean Corby
2004 Piggybankkids Apprentice Handicap at Brighton BRANDYWINE BAY 11/2 owned by Mrs K Pilkington, trained by A P Jones and ridden by Travis Block
2004 Seaview at East Preston Handicap at Brighton MR WHIZZ 10/1 owned by The Milk Sheikhs, trained by A P Jones and ridden by Derek Nolan
2005 Heath Lambert Banded Stakes at Brighton MR WHIZZ 9/2 owned by The Milk Sheikhs, trained by A P Jones and ridden by Derek Nolan
2006 His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales Challenge Trophy Amateur Riders Chase at Ludlow FIN BEC 15/2 owned by P newell, trained by A P Jones and ridden by E Imelov
|2006-October 2008 Paul Anthony Blockley
Paul Anthony Blockley, born circa 1959, had an affinity with horses from an early age, riding ponies in his grandfather's field, pretending to be a jockey. He began training in the 1980s, saddling almost 300 winners during his long training career, much of which was spent at Coedkernew, near Newport in South Wales, the highlight of which was winning the 2008 Criterium International at Saint-Cloud with Zafisio 28/1 owned by H Downs. In 2006 he moved permanently to Hill House and Felstead Court stables on the Folly road in Lambourn, having previously set up a satellite training base in the village. One of his best horses during this stage of his career was Lady Deauville, owned by P J Hughes Developments Ltd, winning the 2007 Dick Hern Fillies Stakes and Listed Upavon Fillies Stakes, while in 2008 she landed the Doonside Cup at Ayr. Paul's career was forced to be put on hold in October 2008 when he was warned off by the British Horseracing Authority for 30 months following a corruption inquiry. His partner Jo Hughes later took over the training licence. He died in France in January 2020 aged 61, his funeral being held in Lambourn at St Michael & All Angels church.
2003 Great St Wilfrid Stakes at Ripon HIDDEN DRAGON 16/1 owned by Jane, Victoria, Aimee and Thelma Whiting, trained by Paul Blockley and ridden by David Nolan
2007 Heatherwold Stud Stakes at Newbury LADY DEAUVILLE 8/1 owned by P J Hughes Developments Ltd, trained by Paul Blockley and ridden by Eddie Ahern
2007 Upavon Listed Fillies Stakes at Salisbury LADY DEAUVILLE 4/1 owned by P J Hughes Developments Ltd, trained by Paul Blockley and ridden by Franny Norton
2007 Dick Hern Fillies Stakes at Bath LADY DEAUVILLE 3/1 owned by P J Hughes Developments Ltd, trained by Paul Blockley and ridden by Franny Norton
2008 Doonside Cup at Ayr LADY DEAUVILLE 15/2 owned by P J Hughes Developments Ltd, trained by Paul Blockley and ridden by Franny Norton
2008 Bluebay Listed Stardom Stakes at Goodwood ZAFISIO 9/2 owned by H Downs, trained by Paul Blockley and ridden by Darryll Holland
2008 Criterium International at Saint-Cloud ZAFISIO 28/1 owned by H Downs, trained by Paul Blockley and ridden by Dominique Boeuf
2009 Roger Curtis
Roger Curtis, born on 10th February 1949, excelled at steeplechase running in his early years, and began his working life in advertising in London. He then became owner and Stud Manager of Eastridge Park Stud, Bolney, West Sussex until 1986. He then decided to switch careers to training at New Lodge, Woodcote Carshalton from 1986 to 1988, sending out his first winner, Hello Georgie at Fontwell on 2nd September 1986. It was some 18 months later that he celebrated his first Flat winner, The Yomper at Doncaster on 25th March 1988. In 1988 he switched to Emyn Lodge, Epsom where he remained for 4 years before returning to his former stables, but continued to use Emyn Lodge as an overflow yard. He enjoyed his highest-profile jumps winner in 1993 when Mister Ed won the Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter, but other jumps successes included the 1987 Glynwed International Chase with Brave Hussar, and the 1998 United House Construction Chase with Dontleavethenest. During the 1992-93 jumps season he guided St Athans Lad to no less than 9 wins, all at his beloved Fontwell. In 1995 he was drawn to Lambourn, taking over Delamere Stables on the Baydon Road. He spent 14 years at Delamere in his first stint at the stables, moving out for just one year to Hill House Stables, Folly Road, Lambourn in 2009. He returned to Delamere in 2010 and remained there for the rest of his career. Whilst at Hill House he enjoyed his best season, sending out 24 winners on the Flat on the back of taking some horses from his nera neighbour Paul Blockley, who was banned from training, and training arguably his best horse, Zafisio, who won the 2009 Prix Perth at Saint Cloud, the Hessen Pokal at Frankfurt, and was runner-up in the Mehl-Mulhens-Rennen, the German 2000 Guineas. In a career lasting 28 years he gained 183 NH wins and a further 65 on the Flat, sending out his final winner, Elegant Olive, at Huntingdon on 23rd November 2013. Roger died of prostate and bone cancer in January 2018 aged 68.
1987 Glynwed International Chase at Newbury BRAVE HUSSAR 8/1 owned by S B Glazer, trained by Roger Curtis and ridden by Carl Llewellyn
1993 Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter MISTER ED 25/1 owned by The Talking Horse Partnership, trained by Roger Curtis and ridden by Derrick Morris
1998 Burnt Oak & Special Cargo Novices Chase at Sandown DONTLEAVETHENEST 7/2 owned by M L Shone, trained by Roger Curtis and ridden by Norman Williamson
1998 United House Construction Chase at Ascot DONTLEAVETHENEST 4/1 fav owned by M L Shone, trained by Roger Curtis and ridden by Norman Williamson
2009 Prix Perth Group 3 at Saint Cloud ZAFISIO 10/1 owned by H Downs and D Looney, trained by Roger Curtis and ridden by Dominique Boeuf
2009 Hessen Pokal Group 3 at Frankfurt ZAFISIO 12/5 owned by H Downs and D Looney, trained by Roger Curtis and ridden by Graham Gibbons
2021-present Jo Hughes
When partner Paul Blockley was banned from training Jo Hughes took over the licence, and the pair later moved to France where Jo trained; sadly Paul died in France in January 2020. In 2016 she saddled Lefortovo to win back-to-back races at Granville-St Pair Sur Mer and Compeigne, but in late 2021 she returned to England. She began training at Hill House Stables in 2021, increasing her total winners to 43. She remained as resident at Hill House, but took the opportunity to expand her training facilities by teaming up with trainer Mikael Magnusson, sharing his 50-box stable at the Old Manor.
2016 Prix Pozzo Immobilier at Granville-St Pair Sur Mer LEFORTOVO owned by L Ormsby, H Downs, R Bedford and Jo Hughes, trained by Jo Hughes and ridden by Emmanuel Etienne
2016 Prix d'Eulalie at Compeigne LEFORTOVO 83/10 owned by L Ormsby, H Downs, R Bedford and Jo Hughes, trained by Jo Hughes and ridden by Mickael Barzalona
|Top 5 Hill House Stable horses of all time
SILA SILA (1996 Prix de Diane Hermes)
ZAFISIO (2009 Prix Perth, Hessen Pokal, 2008 Criterium International)
SKYLINER (1979 Hungerford Stakes)
LADY DEAUVILLE (2008 doonside Cup, 2007 Upavon Fillies Stakes)
OWENBOLISKA (1974 Zetland Gold Cup)
|© John Slusar 2023