After leaving the Society for the Welfare of Horses and Ponies, we made our way from Monmouth to Bridgend in order for me to get some general shots of Laleston where there have been reports of wandering horses on roads and in gardens and also film my second interview with Bridgend Councillor Cheryl Green.
Driving around we found that it was pretty difficult to find these abandoned
horses although we did manage to find some other horses and a sign warning people to close the gate to stop wandering horses getting into the cemetery. Not exactly what I was aiming to get but I know it will all be useful when it comes to the editing.
Eventually we came across a field with quite a few horses in it which looked as though they had been abandoned with scruffy coats and the patterning of gypsy horses, the most commonly abandoned breed. As we approached the barbed wire to get some shots of them, we noticed that it had been cut and mended rather hastily. This really makes me think that they were either put in here in an act of ‘fly-grazing’ where owners who can’t afford to feed them let them feed for free on private land or they had been put in here by authorities to get them out of the road and out of gardens. I’m really pleased with the footage I have of them as I know that it is ideal for this section of my documentary. Managing to find the abandoned horses has been a real achievement and will demonstrate the problem exceedingly well in the programme. I would have like to have got some closer shots of them as they were far away so are rather small but at least I have them and it’s better than nothing.
After a quick spot of lunch, we then went the Cheryl Green’s house at 15:00 to interview her about what she thinks should be done about the problem and how, as a councillor, she thinks it is affecting the area. I was a little bit worried about her two dogs as they were banging and barking at the door which could have affected the sound quite a bit but other than that the interview went really well and I got some really good answers I can use. I think after these interviews, I am really improving on my interview technique. In the past I tended to write the questions and just stick with them rather than listen to what people were saying and ask them about their answers. However now I know that I take what they say into consideration and talk to them about it which has resulted in better responses and subsequently better material for my documentary. As I am aiming to make documentaries in the future, being able to interview people well is a vital part of this so I am glad that I am improving on this.
Once we had been introduced to her two dogs and watched how they go and ‘speak’ to the horses in the field next door, we then left Cheryl’s house to film some more general shots of Laleston from a different direction. Unfortunately at this stage it had begun to rain hard which meant I couldn’t really get very many shots and I am rather annoyed by this but I think I managed to get enough to create a sequence so it’s not the end of the world. In hindsight, it would have been good to have got a shot of the Laleston sign to introduce it in the documentary but since it was quite a way down the hill and we had the equipment to carry (and it was raining), it would have been really hard. I think I should maybe have tried harder though I know I can do well without it.
Overall, today’s filming at the Society for the Welfare of Horses and Ponies and in Laleston has supplied me with a lot of good material for my documentary and I will make sure that I make the best of it. I now want to find out more about the plight of the people and the ponies involved in this abandonment crisis and I am determined to encourage people to want to as well.