Welcome

For 40 years we have been riding high at Barrow Farm enabling people with special needs and disabilities to develop their abilities and enrich their lives through riding.

What’s on

We have a range of events coming up, so please think about coming along to have some fun and support us.  For more information about what is on, see our Events page.

Coming up

Friday 27 March 2020 – Elvis and Friends

Back by popular demand is the amazing Rockersal singer and performer for an evening of rock songs and dancing at Blackmore Village Hall, CM4 0QW at 7.30pm. Dance the night away or just enjoy the performance. Licensed bar, bring your own snacks. Tickets must be purchased in advance. For more details contact Janet by emailing fundraising@barrowfarmrda.org.uk. See dates for your diary for more information.

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Christmas Quiz Results

A big thank you to Julie for organising the Christmas Quiz sheet – which raised an amazing £340 for the centre. Congratulations to the winners.

Thanks to everyone who purchased a sheet. We have included the answers below so you can see how you did and if you were like me, find out the ones you couldn’t get – they seemed so simple once I had seen the answers!

These are the quiz answers, please email us if you would like a copy in accessible format.
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Christmas Holidays

The last day of riding before Christmas will be Saturday 21 December 2019. The horses and ponies get some much needed down time over the holidays and we will return to riding on Saturday 11 January 2020.

Wishing all our riders, their families and carers, our volunteers and supporters a very merry Christmas and best wishes for the New Year!

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Indoor and Outdoor School

Did you know that our indoor and outdoor school are available to hire by riders with their own horses? The cost is £15 an hour for 1 or 2 horses, £20 an hour for 3 or more horses.

Current availability for the indoor riding school is below, there is much more availability if you want to use the outdoor school.

Monday – 8:00-10:00am or 4:00-6:00pm

Wednesday – 5:00 to 7:30pm

Friday – After 6:00pm

Saturday – After 5:30pm

Sunday – Available all day

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Christmas Quiz

Have you seen our Christmas Quiz Sheet? They are only a £1 and provide hours of fine trying to solve the clues. You can pick up a sheet at Barrow Farm RDA Riding School, Ingatestone Saddlery in Margaretting, House and Jackson Vets in Blackmore and Blackmore Tea Room.

Christmas Quiz Sheet
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Thank you Hannah

Running a marathon is hard. I know as I have run three now, which is why we have to say a big thank you to Hannah Newton from Roxwell. Hannah ran Chelmsford Marathon on Sunday raising funds for us at the same time. It was a lovely day for running as it was cool (maybe a little too chilly at the start), dry and with very little wind. The marathon starts with a little loop in the city before coming out through Central and Admiral Parks to Writtle, Roxwell and Willingale. Although it is Essex it is quite an undulating course – definitely not flat. Hannah ran a fantastic time of 3:49:33 and has raised over £1500 to support riding for children and adults with disabilities at Barrow Farm. If you know Hannah and would still like to sponsor her amazing achievement take a look at her JustGiving page.

Many thanks Hannah and well done!

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Vella – Pony of the Month

Many of you will know Vella as she has been at Barrow Farm RDA for over two years now but did you know her full name is Vella-Tor and that her dad was a sports horse? To find out more about Vella why don’t you visit her page and don’t forget you can also adopt Vella or one of her friends. You can find more details on the Adopt-A-Pony page.

Vella, who is one of our four mares, is a very sweet and quiet pony. She likes her riders to be gentle too and responds to very light instructions from her riders to stop, go and turn. She is quite happy with side walkers and is equally happy doing props, such as post boxes and putting the ball in the bucket or doing dressage. She is quite fast and bouncy in trot, so better for the more experienced riders than those just starting trotting.

We think Vella’s great and so do her riders. She is currently undergoing additional training in the hope that she will be a future RDA competition horse, so watch this space to see how she gets on!

Charlotte holding Vella at the end of her lesson
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Coaches attend National Conference

Four of Barrow Farm’s coaches were invited to attend the RDA National Coaching Conference in Warwickshire on 13-14 October. Sally, Anne, Clare and Isobel attended a theory day covering topics including coaching the coach, when to call the vet as well as normal and abnormal development in children and how riding can help.

Sally, Clare and Anne sitting watching
Sally, Clare and Anne sitting watching the practical sessions at the RDA National Centre.

The second day was held at the new RDA National Centre and included sessions on keeping RDA horses and ponies sound through use of dynamic mobility exercises and polework. Followed by a session on biomechanics focusing on the effect of horse and rider on saddle straightness.

Demonstration of using of raised poles to help keep RDA ponies fit and well.

All the coaches at Barrow Farm RDA have undertaken comprehensive training to become RDA coaches but attending training events and conferences are important parts of their continuing development. This ensures that they are able to support our diverse range of riders, whatever their abilities, to maximise their potential and get as much as possible from riding.

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Thank you

A BIG THANK YOU to all those who attended the Curry Night on 28th March 2019. We raised £600. Thanks also to the staff of Baddow Tandoori for looking after us so well.

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Isobel’s Running and Cycling Challenge

Volunteer Coach and Trustee Isobel decided to challenge herself this year and raise money for us at the same time. Last year we asked if Isobel wanted to run the Big Half (a London based half-marathon) but she turned us down claiming ‘I run anyway, why would anyone want to sponsor for me for something I already do’. But Isobel had never run a marathon so this year she decided to run the Blackwater Marathon – follows the canal from Chelmsford to Maldon before heading a long the sea wall to Tollesbury. And two weeks later to cycle around the north coast of Scotland – a route called the North Coast 500. Most people drive this scenic route rather than cycle and there is 8153m (which is in excess of 26,000 feet) of climbing to complete on the route.

Isobel completed the Blackwater Marathon on 31st March in a time of 4 hours and 26 minutes and was the first lady from a field of 20 female runners. She starts her cycle on 16 April. She is cycling between 33 miles on the shortest days to 62 miles on the longest days. This she says will be the biggest challenge – she hasn’t cycled further than 30 miles in a training ride and she doesn’t just have to do it on one day but 10 days in a row!

If you would like to sponsor Isobel you can go to her JustGiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/isobel-gowers or leave a donation at Barrow Farm RDA.

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