Great Britain's Mountain and Moorland Pony Breeds

The Welsh Mountain Section A Pony

The ponies endemic to Wales are all part of Great Britain’s mountain and moorland ponies. The Welsh Mountain Section A is one of four separate Welsh breeds, the others being Welsh Section B, Welsh Cob Section C and Welsh Cob Section D. The Welsh Section A belongs to the 'small' group of mountain and moorland ponies. The other small breeds are the Shetland, Exmoor, Dartmoor, Welsh Mountain Section A and Welsh Section B, the Eriskay and the Kerry Bog pony.

During the reign of King Henry VIII, a decree was passed that all horses under 15 hands were to be destroyed. This was to force the production of large horses suitable as chargers for his knights. Rather than dispose of their small horses and ponies, Welsh farmers released their animals into the inhospitable mountainous regions of Wales.


The ponies ran wild in the hills and valleys of Wales. The winters were severe and there was little grazing or shelter. The ponies which survived have great stamina and much native intelligence. Welsh farmers used their ponies for many different purposes on their smallholdings. Shepherding, pulling small ploughs, carrying produce to market and taking the family to church on Sundays were all part and parcel of the pony’s life.

The Welsh Mountain Pony (Allen Breed Series)
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The Welsh Mountain Pony is one of
the most popular and most beautiful
of the British native pony breeds.
This traces the history of the breed,
together with relevant photographs,
providing a unique record of the breed.

Today the Section A Welsh pony is also known as the Welsh Mountain pony. To be eligible for this section, ponies must not exceed 12.2hh. Like the Arab, the Welsh pony has great beauty combined with stamina and a strong constitution. They are highly intelligent with a friendly personality and an even temperament.

Welsh A PonyCredit:

The head is tiny, usually strongly dished and the eye is large and bold. Sloping shoulders lead into a short back and strong quarters. The tail is set on high. Welsh Section As come in all solid colours. Piebald, skewbald and any spotting is frowned upon in breed classes. The coat is fine and the profuse mane and tail long and silky.

The Versatile Welsh Breeds
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A fresh look at the Welsh breeds
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The Welsh excels at all equestrian pursuits. He has an action which fits him well in harness classes and he makes a wonderful children’s pony and generally has no objection to being decked out in all sorts of finery for costume and fancy dress classes.

In 1901 the Welsh Pony & Cob Society was founded in Wales. Welsh ponies were imported to America as easly as the 1880s but the breed registry, the Welsh Pony and Cob Society of America was not established until 1907. Interest in the breed increased dramatically over the 1950s and the Welsh became the fastest growing breed in American. Nowadays the Welsh Section A (and the three other types) are found throughout the world.