Aberdeen Riding Club
Tel:- (01224) 733111
Choose the best!
The North East Centre of Excellence.
Providing good quality, affordable riding for all.

Club History

Historical - Row of stables
Historical - Tie up block


Club registers as company with Companies House. Begins as company on paper only to take advantage of current VAT legislation. Board of directors consists of directors of profit making parent company. Sally begins working as a training student at the parent company.

Members: 0

Club continues to run as above, however membership is now offered to regular riders as a way to save if riding regularly.

Members: 0-15

Membership slowly increases, although still not a requirement. Sally completes BHS PTT and becomes a junior instructor.

Members: 15-30

The club begins to restructure due to changes in VAT legislation. A new board of directors (including Sally) is voted on as no parent company directors are now permitted to be on the board of a non-profit making company. Although unaware of it at the time, this is the start of the club taking on a seperate identity and moving away from the parent company.

Members: 30-50

The club board of directors discuss the club becoming a true non-profit making members club. This is driven fairly hard by Sally who has a huge belief in making riding more affordable for all. At this point it is still a pipe drem as the company is not financially viable and still relies heavily on the parent company to provide horses/tack and facilities.

Members: 50-70
Turnover: £120,000
1998 to 2000

The board of directors begins to develop the club mentality by offering educational club nights for members, investing heavily in staff training and drawing up future plans for the company. The year 2000 ends with Sally passing her BHS Stage 4 and being appointed club manager. She now works fully for the club rather than the parent company. Sally is tasked with turning around the company finances as it has been in a loss making position since it began.

Members: 70-100
Turnover: £140,000
2001 to 2002

The company finances are successfully turned around until it reaches a position where it makes a small profit in financial year end 2002. The club has developed its commitment to staff training over the last 2 years and is now one of the only organisations to offer funded training places in Scotland. The directors begin to discuss the possibility of relocating the entire company in order to continue its development.

Members: 150
Turnover: £150,000
Assets Purchased:
  • 2 saddles

The club takes the monumental decision to relocate after it recieves a resounding 80% agreement from its surveyed membership base. This involves moving to the new premesis at Oldfold, deciding on the new company name of Aberdeen Riding Club and designing a new logo for the company. ARC goes on to amalgamate with a smaller existing riding school at Oldfold and successfully retains its membership base on relocation.

The club also unveils a new management system (including health and safety policies) which is believed to be unique within the horse industry in Scotland.

Sally gains her BHS stable managers exam.

Members: 180
Turnover: £180,000
Assets Purchased:
  • 1 arena leveller
  • 1 set of showjumps

The club gains BHS "Where to Ride" approval and successfully tenders to provide the riding facility for Aberdeen College Horse Management Course. This is a great achievement for the club as it is the first time the horse management course has changed providers since the course began.

Members: 200
Turnover: £200,000
Assets Purchased:
  • computers
  • new logo
  • compay name
2005 to 2006

The company has a quiet 2005 settling into the new premises and is then given a golden opportunity in 2006 to secure the lease at Oldfold in their own name. By the end of 2006 the club has signed a lengthy lease, has purchased its own horses and equipment and is now truly an independent company that is in control of its own future and can start to implement many schemes to reduce the cost of riding and training.

Members: 250
Turnover: £230,000
Assets Purchased:
  • 20 horses and ponies
  • 20 sets of tack
  • 1 tractor
  • 1 fuel tank
  • 35 outdoor rugs

The club applies for and is granted £10,000 from a sports trust, which is used to put in a new all weather outdoor arena.

The club gains the prestigious BHS "Where to Train" approval.

The club also gains Pony Club and ABRS approval.

The club is approached by Robert Gordons University to become the provider of their riding instruction, which is the start of a great relationship with the university.

The club is delighted to offer to become the new facility for the Riding for the Disabled (Aberdeen) group. It allows the club the opportunity to heavily subsidise the horse hire costs to such a great charity.

Members: 300
Turnover: £240,000
Assets Purchased:
  • new arena surface
  • toilet building
  • 3 competition level horses for staff training and advanced lessons

The club reaches a milestone in funding the 100th exam for a student.

The first club foal is born (Aria).

New staff caravan accomodation is sourced.

Club gains rates relief from Aberdeen Council due to non-profit making status.

The club makes its first own haylage crop.

Members: 350
Turnover: £250,000
Assets Purchased:
  • 2 saddles
  • 4 horses

£3,500 of work to field drains, improved drainage in sand paddock.

200 bales of haylage made.

75% rates relief.

The club decided to form its own members comittee.

The whole yard is repainted and some new surface is put down in the big school.

The assessment system was revamped.

The club also becomes a BHS approved livery yard as well as riding school.

Members: 390
Turnover: £298,000
Assets Purchased:
  • 1 horse
  • 3 saddles

The second club foal is born (Melody).

The club moves into a new reception.

The club revamped the safety management system.

A new drainage system is installed around the muck heap to meet SEPA standards.

The club also started our facebook, blog and twitter pages and launched our website.

Members: 450
Turnover: £325,000
Assets Purchased:
  • 5 horses
  • 2 saddles
  • 25 rugs
  • 1 arena leveller

The club gains "highly commended" status in its BHS inspection and an excellent report from the council inspection.

Club starts to provide some free riding/stable management for local charities and young people who would benefit from it.

Club designs x-country course for use by members and builds "bumps" and x-country bank for extra jump schooling.

Members: 450
Turnover: £330,000
Assets Purchased:
  • x-country course
  • full set of showjumps

Club was awarded "outstanding performance" award for riding school and livery yard. We believe we are the only riding school and livery yard combined to be awarded this honour in the North East of Scotland, possible even Scotland.

Council and veterinary inspection for annual licence also notes us as outstanding.

Members: 450
Turnover: £330,000
Assets Purchased:
  • new rugs for every school horse and pony
  • shower bay for livery yard
  • new horses - KoKo and Henry
  • club took ownership of Boyo and Yogi

Club celebrates the ten year anniversary of moving to Oldfold.

Club holds a really successful 2 day anniversary show in August.

Club donates £1700 of entry and donations from show to Aberdeen RDA.

Club provides horse hire for free for 6 months for RDA as part of ten year celebrations.

Club provides free riding for children attending through "Befriend a Child" charity.

Members: 450
Turnover: £350,000
Assets Purchased:
  • Jafa Cake
  • Steady Neddy
  • Kevin

Club found a new farm.

Club negotiated and signed a 25 year lease.

Club took on ten more livery horses.

Club bought 4 new saddles for riding school.

Members: 450
Turnover: £350,000
Assets Purchased:
  • 4 saddles

Sid receives a trophy after being voted "Scotlands hero animal".

Club achieves planning permission for new centre at Anguston.

Club begins fundraising in earnest.

No big assets bought in 2015 as club has to finance planning application (application £21,000) and associated professional fees.

Members: 450
Assets Purchased:
  • None
Historical - Paddock Boxes
Historical - Yard