Long Lane Equestrian Centre, based in Derby has signed up to a national scheme, Accessibility Mark, to encourage more disabled riders to take up horse riding.
Following an appeal by the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) for more centres to apply for the Accessibility Mark accreditation to help meet demand in the North Midlands area, the centre decided to jump on board. A study by the RDA found that this region has the highest level of unmet demand amongst disabled riders than anywhere else in the UK.
The RDA, in partnership with the British Equestrian Federation (BEF), launched the revolutionary Accessibility Mark scheme to work with commercial riding centres with the aim of getting more disabled people to participate in riding.
After receiving information about the scheme, proprietor, Sally Warwick was prompted to consider the accreditation having wrongly assumed that it wouldn’t be possible to offer their services to disabled riders, thinking the centre’s facilities and horses and ponies wouldn’t be suitable.
“Through Accessibility Mark we have come to realise that we can facilitate disabled riders. The training provided by RDA has given us tremendous confidence in the suitability of our horses and changed our expectations about what is required to teach disabled riders. The staff found the training empowering, having been slightly daunted to start with, but with help from the Accessibility Support Officer (ASO) they were educated on how to support riders without the need for lots of complicated equipment and how to make lessons engaging and fun.”
Located on the border of Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire, the centre is easily accessible to riders from all over the North Midlands area, and provides lessons for riders of all abilities, using their fantastic facilities that include an all-weather arena.
“We look forward to opening up our friendly centre to a wider range of clients.” added Sally.
Accessibility Mark status is awarded to a riding centre that has been approved by the RDA following training and assessment. The close link with the RDA means that it can offer continuous support to the establishment to ensure it provides a first-class experience that aims to be hugely beneficial.
For further information contact Long Lane Equestrian Centre on 01509 674655 or Like the Long Lane Equestrian Facebook Page.