July Newsletter 2024

Hi everyone and welcome to our July newsletter – it’s finally summer and we have had some sun – or even a bit too much sun as we had to cancel afternoon/evening lessons a day last week as it was over 30 degrees in the shed!

MEMBERSHIP

Thank you to all members who provided their membership forms and payments during May (due on or before 1st June). There are still a small amount of members who have not completed their membership forms or payment, so do please be aware that as membership is now considerably overdue we won’t be able to let you ride until the membership is completed.

AUGUST TIDY UP!

As we did last year, we are going to close the centre for three days (whilst Blair Horse Trials are on) as it gives us a great chance to power wash the whole building whilst the horses are out and carry out any maintenance that needs done – so just a pre-warning to everyone that the riding school will be closed on Fri 23rd, Sat 24th and Sun 25th August – why not make a weekend of it and go down to Blair Horse Trials – it’s a great event to watch and sadly this year is the last year that it’s running, so now is your chance to go and watch it!

COFFEE AREA WORKS

We have now finished the works that were being done in the coffee/storage area so are now back to normal in that area – a big thank you to everyone for their patience whilst the works were going on and we had to move the hats/seats e.t.c!

LUNGE TRAINING DAY

We are running a lunging training day on Monday 22nd July from 10a.m – 2p.m which will cover the theory of lunging/how to fit all the equipment and then some practical opportunity to do some lunging – it’s a great opportunity to learn how to lunge, but also to learn a lot about equine behaviour and how our behaviour affects them. If you’d like to book onto this session, it is suitable for any age/standard of member and costs £60 for the full day – if you’d like to book in then just drop Ali an email or head into reception to see her.

LEADERSHIP DAY/AWARDS

We have now been delivering Leadership Awards training for teenagers on a Saturday afternoon for more than a year and they are proving really popular. The idea of the sessions is that the young people (12 – 18 year olds) work through some tasks and projects whilst developing their confidence and team work skills along with meeting new friends at the sessions. They are such a good way for young people to learn and get more confident with speaking to others/working as a team and learning lots about body language and soft skills.

We are running a Leadership Day on Tuesday 23rd July from 10a.m – 2p.m which is open to anyone 12 – 18 years old (whether they have done some Leadership sessions before or never attended!) – this session also costs £60 for the day so again if you have a young person who would benefit from it and enjoy it, just drop Ali an email or pop into reception to book. The Leadership sessions are not equine specific – so participants don’t need to be riding or having lessons at all – we use horses, but in different ways to demonstrate communications skills 🙂

END OF SRUC CONTRACT

As most of our members are aware, for the last 3 years, ARC has been delivering the practical content for the HNC in Equine Studies for SRUC. It was a 3 year contract that ARC tendered for initially, so the contract finished at the end of May 2023. We already had plans to develop some of the Equine Facilitated Learning programmes that we run, so were not going to be tendering to provide the contract from 2024 onwards – however SRUC have now decided to pause delivery of this course as they are busy with lots of other courses on, but they may revisit it in the future for anyone in the area who was interested in doing the course in the future. We really enjoyed delivering the course – it was lovely to meet all the different students and to give them some great experience on a real life commercial centre – it was also really good for our staff to deliver a different type of session, but we are very keen to develop the equine facilitated learning sessions as they have a great impact, so a bit more on that later!

WELCOME NEW TEAM MEMBERS!

Everyone will likely have met Sophie by now, who is working on the yard and helping lessons get mounted e.t.c. – Sophie has been a great addition to the team and she is now studying towards her BHS Stage 2 (already has her Stage 1) and is also enrolled on some training for assisting with the delivery of Changing Lives Through Horses. We are also welcoming a new Saturday member of staff in mid-July (Naomi) and a Wednesday late night member of staff (Christy) so you will see some new faces helping get the school horses/ponies ready and keeping the livery horses happy and in the style they are accustomed to!

EQUINE FACILITATED LEARNING

As many members will know, we have been building up the provision of The British Horse Society Changing Lives Through Horses (CLTH) that we offer – the CLTH programme is an education based programme aimed at young people who are either disengaged with school education, or who are at risk of disengaging. It is a great programme, which teaches key skills to young people and having run a pilot scheme for one participant initially in late 2023/early 2024, for the last few months we have been running a group session for a group of young people from a City secondary school – the young people are all school refusers and we have seen a huge improvement in the young people since they started the course, attending for 1.5 – 2 hours on a Wednesday.

We are now in a position that we can take private referrals for the CLTH programme, so if you know of a young person who may benefit from the programme, then do please drop us an email to get more information.

SCRUFTY BOOTS!

We’ve had a few members ask us why Scrufty has been wearing “sports boots” in his lessons, so thought we’d let everyone know! As many of you will know, Scrufty has “delicate” feet – he has always worn glue on Imprint shoes as he doesn’t like having metal shoes nailed on – he goes a bit lame for a couple of days afterwards. Scrufty doesn’t have particularly thick soles, so he isn’t able to work barefoot, so our farrier suggested trying him in the sports boots as it means he isn’t off work for days if he pulls a shoe off and they should offer good support to Scrufty when working. Scrufty is a big fan – he has been trying them for around 2 months now – he has the boots put on when he comes in to do a lesson (but goes barefoot in the field) and he is very happy with them!

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