A WIGAN horse-care expert is officially one of the UK’s star workers in the equine industry.
For Katie Hest, of Queensway, Shevington, has been shortlisted for the prestigious Employee of the Year awards organised by the British Equestrian Trade Association (BETA).
The 24-year-old, a senior nutritional specialist, was nominated by her employers at Supplement Solutions, in Great Eccleston, in North Lancashire.
She joined the firm two-and-a-half years ago in a junior role.
Katie now acts as a supervisor, as well as providing advice to horse owners on keeping their animals healthy.
She was selected for her vast knowledge of the firm’s 5,000 products, and an ability to provide professional advice.
She said: “It is really lovely to think my employer thinks I do something above and beyond. I don’t consider myself doing anything special, but it is nice to that my bosses value me.”
Educated at St Peter’s High School, in Orrell, and Winstanley College, Katie read equine science at Aberystwyth University,
from where she graduated with an honours degree.
A keen horse rider from an early age, she has been the proud owner of Murphy, a 20-year-old Irish cob, for three years.
The pair have taken part and gathered rosettes in various local dressage and show-jumping events.
Katie said: “I have always been very interested in horses.
“It is really nice to establish a strong relationship with them and it is lovely to go to the yard and relax after a stressful day.”
Internet-based Supplement Solutions was set up nine years ago, providing equine nutrients and advice for horse owners.
The BETA awards - which regularly attract more than 4,000 nominations - will be announced at an awards ceremony on February 16 at the National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham.
Katie will then learn if she has led the field and won a luxury weekend break for two in London.