Princess Anne Opens New Riding for Disabled Arena!
“It’s so cool to be riding in front of the Princess,” said Emily Hamilton, 13. “And we won’t be nervous because we’ve done lots of practice.”
Taking part were Rachel and Emma Greenwood, Chloe and Rebecca Pitchforth, Katie McDonagh, Holly Pinder, Brodie and Ellie Saunders, Hannah Surbuts, Nicole Fairbank, Caitlin Riley, Charlotte Brannan McArdle and Emily Hamilton.
Throstle Nest Riding for the Disabled Group and Throstle Nest Riding School recently raised over £100,000 to fund the new all weather facility. The ASDA Foundation, via the store at Owlcotes, is amongst the sponsors, contributing a massive £19,000 towards the project which includes a new ramp and toilet block. The toilet block was part-funded by the British Equestrian Federation, Yorkshire Hoof Regional Network.
Pony Club members and their families have been heavily involved with the fund raising which has included bag–packing at local supermarkets, raffles and an open day.
“It’s been great that everybody has pulled together,” said owner, Jeannette Wheeler, “and now we’ve got the indoor arena we never have to cancel events. Before, when it was icy or raining heavily, we would often have to abandon activities - which was obviously very disappointing for everybody.”
Throstle Nest even has a new Pony Club mini’s group and more RDA groups and individuals are also using the facility.
The Lord Mayor of Bradford and representatives of some of the sponsors were amongst the invited guests on 2nd April. A group of RDA adult riders from Listonshiels Resource Centre, Bierley Lane also rode and the Pony Club put on a display of mounted games. The Princess unveiled a plaque and was presented with a bouquet and an RDA baseball cap.
In preparation for the visit, Pony Club members helped out around the yard, sweeping up, cleaning tack, grooming, mucking out and doing anything else that was needed.
“They were all brilliant,” said Abi Wheeler, Assistant Manager. “The Princess said the new arena was fabulous. And we all had a great day – ponies included.”