WELCOME TO THE EAST ANGLIAN BORDER COLLIE CLUB
"The following information on the history of the East Anglian Border Collie Club was kindly provided by Felix Cosme, founding member and first Chairman of the East Anglian Border Collie Club".In 1979 Joyce Collis and I were on the Committee of the Border Collie Club of Great Britain, and felt that, although there were many training classes for Obedience and Agility, there were very few that specialised in training specifically for Border Collies in the show ring.Joyce and I had been active in exhibiting Bearded Collies, and we convinced the Border Collie Club of Great Britain that we could have a separate committee in another part of the country that could organise shows and training classes for its members - a branch that would be an extension of the Border Collie Club of GB.We formed a committee of people who were interested [and competent] in Sheep Trials, Agility, Obedience and show ring Conformation, together with a local pet owner who was keen on the advancement of the Breed. Joyce became Chairman and I was Club Secretary. This group of people took the name of the East Anglian Branch of the Border Collie Club - the first of its kind in the breed.Our newly-formed club held get-together's on the second Sunday of every month. We had instruction on basic Obedience and Agility, and practiced on make-shift equipment. We also had the sheep farmer and committee member Ray Edwards and his wife [who lived in Ware, Hampshire] giving us training. There were also lessons on handling the Border Collie in the show ring, which in those days was badly needed. The East Anglian Branch was very popular in those days and members were keen to participate every month.Unfortunately, Joyce and I had so many demands on our free time [much of which was taken up with judging and exhibiting our own dogs] that we found it impossible to devote the necessary time to the running of the club. As a results, we decided to resign from the club. A few years later, The East Anglian Branch of the Border Collie Club of GB was no longer functioning as it should, and soon ceased to exist.At that time there were no specialised activities for the breed in East Anglia, and, as we had recently established the Eastern Bearded Collie Association, Joyce and I decided to have a go at establishing a Border Collie Club answerable only to the Kennel Club. We first approached Mrs Monica Boggia-Blck, who was the Secretary of the Southern Border Collie Club. Joyce and I invited her to be our President, as she had a wealth of experience dealing with Kennel Club procedures, and she was extremely knowledgeable and interested in the breed. We then asked Mrs Iris Combe to be the patron of the club, in recognition of the work she had done [with Major Harry Glover] in the early days of the "show" Border Collie, in gaining its recognition as a show dog.
The following people were founder members and were voted onto the acting committee:
Felix Cosme, [Acting Chairman] Joyce Collis, [Acting Secretary], Mrs Jennifer Gardner,, who in later years, took over the duties of the Secretary, Vicky Green, who until recently was the Treasurer, Ross Green, who took on the duties of the Chairman after Felix had retired, Bob and Liz Rushton, Alicia Pennington, Sue and Jim Waring, Jean Smith, Ken and Mrs Crickmore and Ann Fox.Other founder members who donated money and believed in our dedication to the Show Border Collie were:
Mrs Gloria Robbins, Mrs Angela Gillespie, Bruce and Sheena Kilsby, Mrs Pat Ryan, Mrs Pat Wilkinson, Mrs Ann Amos, Sylvia and Cyril Croot, Vic and Lynne Salt, Roger and Mary Bathurst, John and Mary Gascoigne, Mr John Ritchi, Kathie Frawley, Mrs Monica Boggia-Black and Mrs Iris Combe.At the inaugural meeting, I made it clear that the purpose of the club was primarily to promote the Border Collie as a show dog, and the acting committee were in agreement. I emphasised the fact that we needed a Club in our area that was dedicated to educating the Border Collie owner. At the meeting, Mr John Gascoigne, Chairman of the Southern Border Collie Club, announced their support.Our plans for the future included organised monthly get-togethers, with an extensive variety program, including animal health. We planned to invite our vet, who specialised in CEA [Collie Eye Anomaly] to give a talk on this subject. As we were promoting the Show Border Collie, we would also organise show ring training. As we were only an acting club at that time, we would would eventually apply to the Kennel Club for approval as a registered club.About a year later, the East Anglian Border Collie Club was accepted by the Kennel Club. As an established Border Collie Club, we set out to organise dog shows, and in those days we had judging seminars for would-be judges. I took the idea from one of the Rough Collie Clubs, and came up with the competition "Border Collie of the Year". I outlined the type of competition that we could organise, and the committee agreed, so we presented the procedure to the Kennel Club and they approved.- Then we laid out the event to the other Border Collie Clubs, and the rest is history - this competition is now held by all the clubs on a yearly basis.The East Anglian Border Club was considered, by many all-breed judges, to be a most prestigious club. Prior to the club obtaining Championship Show status, Joyce Collis and I resigned as a results of the pressures of judging and showing our dogs, In addition, we were both busy writing books: I wrote a book on Junior Handling and Joyce wrote books on Bearded Collies and Border Collies. We felt that we had left when the club was a thriving, well-organised club, and it should only continue in the same way.
Felix Cosme....founding member of the EABCC.