Showing rider, Melissa Hatton’s sudden death leaves showing community in mourning

Showing Rider, Melissa Hatton's Sudden Death Leaves Equestrian Community in Mourning

Showing rider, Melissa Hatton’s sudden death leaves the showing and wider community in mourning.

Melissa, a 24-year-old teacher from Derbyshire, died suddenly in her sleep on Saturday 3rd July. There was no cause or explanation for the young rider’s death, with the news coming as an indescribable shock to those close to her.

Melissa enjoyed success at the top level of showing. She regularly competed on ponies and intermediates in the show ring, starting her journey aged 3, at her local riding club. Aged seven, she progressed to national level showing. Melissa rose through the ranks of the British Show Pony Classes (BSPS) and regularly competing at both the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) and the Royal International (RIHS).

The talented rider’s ponies, included Dandy, Bramble Jenny Wren, Woodnook Orinoco, Romany River Olivia, Musley Rue De Royale, her wonderful Chaseford Aspen, Wydham Little Rascal, Rhos Escapade, Deja Vu, Little Darcy, Laybalands Viscount and Kirtle Bertie Bassett.


Melissa was also an active committee member of BSPS area 4A. Here, she organised young judges competitions. She also supported the British Elite showing series and local riding clubs.

Julie Cook, Area Chair for BSPS 4A, announced on social media;

It is with indescribable pain & sadness that area 4a mourns the loss of one of its brightest stars. Melissa was an accomplished rider & a ‘star baker’ but most of all a truly remarkable young lady.”

“I recently wrote a newsletter for 4A and found myself stating on nearly every paragraph ‘please get in touch with Melissa’ or ‘please give Melissa a call.’ She contributed so much to area 4a and nothing was too much trouble.”

“Your wonderful legacy will be continued. Melissa will be eternal and loved until the end of time.”

Showing Live also payed tribute to the rising star;

A young lady loved by so many and whose kindness and foresight led by example. A charming competitor who adored her horses and ponies, talented cake maker, pony judge and excited assistant at Selston Equestrian Centre which Melissa planned to help run as a top showing venue. A rising star will shine brightly in heaven. Our thoughts are with her family and friends on this extremely sad day.”

Now, family have set up a JustGiving page to raise money in memory of Melissa. The funds will go toward causes that were close to Melissa’s heart;
  • a trophy/sponsorship in her name for the British Show Pony Society;
  • a trophy in her name for Nottinghamshire Young Farmers;
  • and a residential trip for her year 1 class at Mansfield Primary Academy School.

You can donate to Melissa’s CrowdFund by visiting justgiving

For further support, visit sudden or call The Samaritans on 116 123.

Header Image: Melissa Grace Hatton riding Darcy [Image credit; Melissa Grace Hatton Facebook]

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