Group member of RDA Send us an email Send us an email Join our Facebook group Join our Facebook group Please donate and leave a message Registered Charity No. 1141360 (Please note our charity used to be known as Abingdon Group RDA with charity number 1074161, this charity ceased to exist in 2014 when it was replaced with the current incorporated form of RDA Abingdon Ltd (with the charity number 1141360). (A Group Member of the Riding for the Disabled Association incorporating Carriage Driving, Registered Company No 5010395, Registered Charity No, 244108) Abingdon RDA twinned with Kenya RDA
Abingdon RDA
Offering riding opportunities to disabled people in Oxfordshire and beyond.
News
June 28th 2015 - Our 40th Anniversary Event What a super day was had by all!  The forecast was not very favourable but the rain stopped in time for a wonderful equestrian production of Alice in Wonderland topped off with a Mad Hatters' Tea party.
Trip to Olympia International Horse Show Sunday December 20th 2015 A group of riders enjoyed an exciting evening with huge thanks to The Saddlers who donated a private box.  Popular with our group was Jean-François Pignon and his breath-taking display (below left), the Sheltand pony Grand National, the show jumping and the very skilled Pony Club riders.  The musical ride of the Household Cavalry  was a big hit as well! and made the sessions such fun for the young riders.  The group is still operating from a stable and field complex just down the lane from where Sue lives, and as she keeps some of the  ponies used for RDA  in her yard, this is a very convenient venue.  I recently spent an afternoon with the Kenya RDA group and, as always, thoroughly enjoyed meeting and helping with three classes of very disabled children who come weekly from a near by children's home. The helpers and instructors under the guidance of Sue Anderson and Jane Tyrrell were excellent It certainly looks as if the group will be operating from here for the foreseeable future as land in this area is far too expensive to acquire. After a very welcome cup of tea with some of the helpers back at Sue's house I left knowing that the group remains happy and extremely well run. Milla Harvey Kenya RDA O’Donnell, to highlight the benefit of the horses’ walk pace for the riders, and factors that can influence the quality of the walk - e.g. the leader not allowing the ponies to move freely, tack, conformation and the environment. A good walk for the rider should be rhythmical, repetitive and variable.  We were also reminded that RDA ponies should be schooled regularly by balanced riders.  These were some of the points that were highlighted when discussing the Transfer of Movement from the horse to the rider. An interesting and informative training session.  Emily and Gwenfair Emily and myself attended the South Region RDA training day in February.  We observed a lesson, led by Theresa Drake, using basic dressage movements as an introduction to the world of dressage for young riders.  All riders rode using a saddle but no stirrups - according to the physiotherapist, the child gains more benefit from the pony’s movement if riding without stirrups. Other topics included assessment of the horse’s paces, how to lead, introduction to dressage tests, plus a demonstration of the walk and trot dressage test with very helpful comments from Waveny Luke.  Then it was the turn of the physiotherapists, Nona Dane and Elspeth Instructors’ Training Day Plant Sale - The Plant sale on Saturday May 14th was a great success. Many thanks to everyone who contributed with raffle prizes, plants, cakes,  cards, tombola etc.  It was nice to see so many supporters on the day and we are grateful to all those who purchased raffle tickets.  Sarah Wilkinson still has a few plants to sell so the total should be in the region of £2000. An excellent result to help raise funds for the stables. There are still a few plants left - see Fund-raising page.  Hay Bale Mountain - thank you.  Thanks from Charlie to everyone who supported his special 'hay bale mountain'. You raised £100 which was enough to pay for his special hay  for about four weeks  over the winter.    Sue Murrin Pony for the Day Tuesday May 31st  These five girls and their wonderful helpers, had a fantastic "pony for the day" day. The day started mucking out 3 boxes, followed by a  grooming session. Then a ride round the handy pony course. Time to relax and have lunch before fun and games with gymkhana.  They then all gave a mini lecture from the gallery on something that they had learned during the course of the day. Rosettes all round and  then home. Thank you so much to all those that make these days possible. They will be running during the summer holidays so look out for the  lists if you would like to join in. During last week of June 2016 we played host to 2 groups of Brownies.  The first to arrive were Long Wittenham Brownies on Monday and on Thursday we were also delighted to welcome the Southmoor and Kingston Bagpuize group.  Both groups gave us a very generous donation and we thank them very much for their support. Southmoor and Kingston Bagpuize Brownies gave the ponies a thorough grooming and enjoyed discussing the benefits of riding with Syd - one of our riders.  Then they learned the art of leading the ponies with some of our volunteers.  After a quick Google - here is the answer to one of their difficult questions: "Horses are not colour blind, but have two-colour vision. This means they see two of the basic three wavelengths of visible light, compared to the three-colour of most humans. In other words, horses naturally see the blue and green colours of the spectrum and the colour variations based upon them, but cannot distinguish red. Research indicates their colour vision is somewhat like red-green colour blindness in humans, in which certain colours, especially red and related colours, appear more green." On Monday evening we had a visit from the 1st Long Wittenham Brownies. 12 of them came with their leader, and we all had a great time - one of our volunteers said she had learned so much about horses. Sandra, our Yard Manager gave the youngsters a really fun session on stable management, horse passports and many other interesting things, and the Brownies seemed to thoroughly enjoy the evening. Mr. Brown, Charlie and Bryn were present throughout, and enjoyed the attention of the girls. Alfie, who was our only rider thoroughly enjoyed the evening! A huge thank you to a team from Microsoft who came to the stables and gave it a much-needed face lift.  During their team meeting and events, they also raised some money for our group, this they can get matched via Microsoft who support many charities in this way.  We should receive a wonderful total of £2440 which will be put to good use.  Thank you so much team - it all looks superb. May 2017  Two of our volunteers came to support us at the Standlake Village market where we have a regular stall with a tombola, cakes etc.  The market is held in Standlake Village Hall on the first Saturday of every month.  January 2017  Request for volunteers for yard duties.  If anyone has any time to spare to help with mucking out (morning or evening), bringing horses in from the field, grooming etc. please contact us.  Wed 7th Dec  The Wednesday morning group held a training session during which we packed in lots of topics.  Back by popular request was a very naughty Victoria riding Jim Bob.  Victoria was trying to throw herself off and being very unbalanced and unruly.  This led to discussions about the best support (what felt secure and comfortable for Victoria and what was the best hold for side walkers).  The overwhelming response from everyone was the arm across the thigh and outer hand holding the leg just above the ankle.  We demonstrated why you should avoid supporting the back if at all possible.  Jim Bob was a complete star - he stopped every time he thought that Victoria was about to fall off! Victoria’s antics didn’t stop once she was dismounted - she ran off wildly around the school demonstrating the need to be on the ball all the time.  Sept 16th - Blenheim Sponsored Ride  Another successful event - we were so very lucky at Blenheim, the weather was OK but floods all around.  Only 2 riders didn’t make the journey.  Including Gift Aid we raised approximately £3000.  Thank you to all who took part - we hope to see you next year.   September 4th 2016 - Fun Day  The forecast was set fair but turned out to be a bit grey and blustery.  However it didn’t rain!  A great time was had by all and the activities (gymkhana, handy pony, pony knowledge etc.) produced some star riders.  Thank you to all who made the day such a success and to the splendid chefs from the Faringdon Rotary Club who organised the barbecue which emitted a wonderful aroma.     Pony for the Day - July 27th  A brilliant and exhausting day was had by Freya, Libby and Sophia - owning Speckle, Polo and Bryne for the day. Grooming and preparation was followed by a long hot walk and back for trotting.  A refuel helped us all cope with handy pony, a pony knowledge game using the dressage letters ,and a gymkhana. Freya and Sophia decided that sitting down on the job for skipping out was in order - gloves at the ready for a necessary part of owning a pony.  Tack cleaning at the end of the day allowed us all to recover on a chair!   Zip wire challenge.   July 3rd 2016 - a 6:45 a.m. start and we are off to ride the Titan (ZIp World) in North Wales.  Many thanks to all those who sponsored us so generously (even though it is over, it isn’t too late to sponsor). It was a long journey and many thanks to Mel and Rachel for sharing the driving - not an easy task once off the motorway. We all had to wear the gear - special flattering onesies, a hard hat, protective glasses and the harness with a strange seat.  We also had to carry what they called the “trolley” a heavy piece of equipment that attaches to the wire.  All weighed down and hardly able to walk, we made our way to the minibus that took us to the highest point and the longest, but slowest wire.  We admired a wonderful view of Blaenau Ffestiniog and the valley below, and then we lined up to be attached to the equipment. For this wire we went down in tandem to add weight and counteract the side wind (didn’t really help, we still ended up facing sideways).  It was a short walk to the second, steeper zip and we were told that you get a better sense of speed because it is closer to the ground.  What a rush of adrenalin that caused!  Then we had to walk someway up a steep track to the final wire (quite a challenge with the gear) and then down the final zip which didn’t disappoint.  See the video on our Facebook page. We made enough money to finance the RDA for a month! I think that we all deserve a “we were brave” badge. May 2017 Gillie and Sarah Barlow should have a “we were brave badge”!  They performed a Wing Walk in aid of our much anticipated new indoor school.  It’s not too late to donate to their Just Giving page.View the video and dig deep!  Sarah also held a wonderful Food Fair in Ardington that was very well supported.Thank you both for your bravery and hard work. May 2017  We held a plant sale with side stalls and refreshments.  It was such a pity about the weather which affected turnout but we still managed to make a healthy sum of just over £1100.  Many thanks to Sarah Wilkinson for her amazing hard work and also to all others who helped and donated plants/prizes etc.  Fun with “Pin the tail on Mr. Brown” and “Lucky Dip”……  May 2017 We are very grateful to the Faringdon Rotary Club who presented a cheque for £4,500 to two of our Saturday morning riders by club President Sarah Benson. Sarah chose Abingdon RDA as her charity for the year, and the money was raised from their annual Duck Race at Millets Farm along with other fund raising activities.
 
May 2017 - The Wednesday evening class starred in a Meridian TV News report.  See the full footage here.  Some excellent riding impressed the team who came to interview and record the lesson.  Alice - the instructor provided a wonderful lesson despite the distractions and the riders all thoroughly enjoyed the experience. June 2017 - 9 of our riders qualified for the National Championships, on 5 different ponies, so they will heading for Hartpury.  Very many thanks to all the instructors, volunteers and staff who made this day such a huge success for our group.  The ponies were wonderful and the riders excelled. June 11th 2017 - Rooster’s Picnic Ride.  Anita organised a superb picnic ride from her home on the downs.  We did a large circle which included part of the Ridgeway.  The weather was just perfect, warm with a nice cooling wind.  Apparently we walked and rode nearly 6 miles and ended up back in the yard happy and tired.  Sharon and Sue M  did us proud with an amazing picnic.  Very many thanks to everyone (especially to Anita, Piers, Sandra, Denise G, Sharon and Sue M) for their hard work and dawn start to make this a really wonderful day.  We are off……… Sandy hitched a lift home Roxy wants to stay 5th July - Kingfisher Picnic ride.  The weather couldn’t have been better.  We had a wonderful ride around the fields followed by a picnic of our usual extremely high standard which was enjoyed by all. Well done to all those who competed at the National Finals - we are proud of you all!Thank you also to all those who put in such hard work coaching the riders, training the horses, preparing the horses and for your support and hard work on location.
Registered Charity No. 1141360  (A Group Member of the Riding for the Disabled Association incorporating Carriage Driving,  Registered Company No 5010395, Registered Charity No, 244108)
© Abingdon RDA 2017
Abingdon RDA
Please donate and leave a message
Offering riding opportunities to disabled people in Oxfordshire and beyond.
NEWS
June 11th 2017 - Rooster’s Picnic Ride.  Anita organised a superb picnic ride from her home on the downs.  We did a large circle which included part of the Ridgeway.  The weather was just perfect, warm with a nice cooling wind.  Apparently we walked and rode nearly 6 miles and ended up back in the yard happy and tired.  Sharon and Sue M  did us proud with an amazing picnic.  Very many thanks to everyone (especially to Anita, Piers, Sandra, Denise G, Sharon and Sue M) for their hard work and dawn start to make this a really wonderful day.
Instructors’ Training Day.         Trip to Olympia International Horse Show  Sunday December 20th 2015 A group of riders enjoyed an exciting evening with huge thanks to The  Saddlers who donated a private box.  Popular with our group was Jean- François Pignon and his breath-taking display (below left), the Sheltand  pony Grand National, the show jumping and the very skilled Pony Club  riders.  The musical ride of the Household Cavalry  was a big hit as well!  June 28th 2015 - Our 40th Anniversary Event What a super day was had by all!  The forecast was not very favourable but the rain  stopped  in time for a wonderful equestrian production of Alice in Wonderland topped off  with a Mad Hatters' Tea party.  Emily and myself attended the South Region RDA training day in February. We observed a lesson, led by Theresa Drake, using basic dressage movements as an introduction to the world of dressage for young riders.  All riders rode using a saddle but no stirrups - according to the physiotherapist, the child gains more benefit from the pony’s movement if riding without stirrups. Other topics included assessment of the horse’s paces, how to lead, introduction to dressage tests, plus a demonstration of the walk and trot dressage test with very helpful comments from Waveny Luke.  Then it was the turn of the physiotherapists, Nona Dane and Elspeth O’Donnell, to highlight the benefit of the horses’ walk pace for the riders, and factors that can influence the quality of the walk - e.g. the leader not allowing the ponies to move freely, tack, conformation and the environment. A good walk for the rider should be rhythmical, repetitive and variable. We were also reminded that RDA ponies should be schooled regularly by balanced riders.  These were some of the points that were highlighted when discussing the Transfer of Movement from the horse to the rider. An interesting and informative training session.  Emily and Gwenfair    Kenya I recently spent an afternoon with the Kenya RDA group and, as always, thoroughly enjoyed meeting and helping with three classes of very disabled children who come weekly from a near by children's home. The helpers and instructors under the guidance of Sue Anderson and Jane Tyrrell were excellent and made the sessions such fun for the young riders.  The group is still operating from a stable and field complex just down the lane from where Sue lives, and as she keeps some of the  ponies used for RDA  in her yard, this is a very convenient venue.  It certainly looks as if the group will be operating from here for the foreseeable future as land in this area is far too expensive to acquire. After a very welcome cup of tea with some of the helpers back at Sue's house I left knowing that the group remains happy and extremely well run. Milla Harvey Pony for the Day Tuesday May 31st  These five girls and their wonderful helpers, had a fantastic "pony for the day" day. The day started mucking out 3 boxes, followed by a grooming session. Then a ride round the handy pony course. Time to relax and have lunch before fun and games with gymkhana. They then all gave a mini lecture from the gallery on something that they had learned during the course of the day. Rosettes all round and then home. Thank you so much to all those that make these days possible. They will be running during the summer holidays so look out for the lists if you would like to join in.  May 2017  Two of our volunteers came to support us at the Standlake Village market where we have a regular stall with a tombola, cakes etc.  The market is held in Standlake Village Hall on the first Saturday of every month.   January 2017  Request for volunteers for yard duties.  If anyone has any time to spare to help with mucking out (morning or evening), bringing horses in from the field, grooming etc. please contact us.  Wed 7th Dec  The Wednesday morning group held a training session during which we packed in lots of topics.  Back by popular request was a very naughty Victoria riding Jim Bob.  Victoria was trying to throw herself off and being very unbalanced and unruly.  This led to discussions about the best support (what felt secure and comfortable for Victoria and what was the best hold for side walkers).  The overwhelming response from everyone was the arm across the thigh and outer hand holding the leg just above the ankle.  We demonstrated why you should avoid supporting the back if at all possible.  Jim Bob was a complete star - he stopped every time he thought that Victoria was about to fall off! Victoria’s antics didn’t stop once she was dismounted - she ran off wildly around the school demonstrating the need to be on the ball all the time.  Sept 16th 2016 Blenheim Sponsored Ride  Another successful event - we were so lucky the weather was OK but floods all around.  Only 2 riders didn’t make the journey.  Including GiftAid, we raised approximately £3000.  Thank you to all who took part - we hope to see you next year.  Wed July 27th - Pony for the day  A happy day for Freya with Speckle, Sophia with Bryne, and Libby with Polo.  All proud owners of their ponies for the day.  We packed so much in that we were all quite exhausted.  Skipping out was a sitting affair!   Wed 13th JulyKingfisher School’s last ride this term ended with our usual feast and certificates and rosettes for the children.  July 3rd 2016 - a 6:45 a.m. start and we are off to ride the Titan (ZIp World) in North Wales.  Many thanks to all those who sponsored us so generously (even though it is over, it isn’t too late to sponsor). It was a long journey and many thanks to Mel and Rachel for sharing the driving - not an easy task once off the motorway. We all had to wear the gear - special flattering onesies, a hard hat, protective glasses and the harness with a strange seat.  We also had to carry what they called the “trolley” a heavy piece of equipment that attaches to the wire.  All weighed down and hardly able to walk, we made our way to the minibus that took us to the highest point and the longest, but slowest wire.  We admired a wonderful view of Blaenau Ffestiniog and the valley below, and then we lined up to be attached to the equipment. For this wire we went down in tandem to add weight and counteract the side wind (didn’t really help, we still ended up facing sideways).  It was a short walk to the second, steeper zip and we were told that you get a better sense of speed because it is closer to the ground.  What a rush of adrenalin that caused!  Then we had to walk someway up a steep track to the final wire (quite a challenge with the gear) and then down the final zip which didn’t disappoint.   We made enough money to finance the RDA for a month! I think that we all deserve a “we were brave” badge.  A huge thank you to a team from Microsoft who came to the stables and gave it a much-needed face lift.  During their team meeting and events, they also raised some money for our group, this they can get matched via Microsoft who support many charities in this way.  We should receive a wonderful total of £2440 which will be put to good use.  Thank you so much team - it all looks superb.  During last week of June 2016 we played host to 2 groups of Brownies.  The first to arrive were Long Wittenham Brownies on Monday and on Thursday we were also delighted to welcome the Southmoor and Kingston Bagpuize group.  Both groups gave us a very generous donation and we thank them very much for their support.  May 2017 Gillie and Sarah Barlow should have a “we were brave badge”!  They performed a Wing Walk in aid of our much anticipated new indoor school.  It’s not too late to donate to their Just Giving page.  View the video and dig deep! Sarah also held a wonderful Food Fair in Ardington that was very well supported.Thank you both for your bravery, support and hard work. May 2017  We held a plant sale with side stalls and refreshments.  It was such a pity about the weather which affected turnout but we still managed to make a healthy sum of just over £1100.  Many thanks to Sarah Wilkinson for her amazing hard work and also to all others who helped and donated plants/prizes etc.  Fun with “Pin the tail on Mr. Brown” and “Lucky Dip”……  May 2017 We are very grateful to the Faringdon Rotary Club who presented a cheque for £4,500 to two of our Saturday morning riders by club President Sarah Benson. Sarah chose Abingdon RDA as her charity for the year, and the money was raised from their annual Duck Race at Millets Farm along with other fund raising activities. May 2017 - The Wednesday evening class starred in a Meridian TV News report.  See the full footage here.  Some excellent riding impressed the team who came to interview and record the lesson.  Alice - the instructor provided a wonderful lesson despite the distractions and the riders all thoroughly enjoyed the experience.   June 2017 - 9 of our riders qualified for the National Championships, on 5 different ponies, so they will heading for Hartpury.  Very many thanks to all the instructors, volunteers and staff who made this day such a huge success for our group.  The ponies were wonderful and the riders excelled.    We are off……… Sandy hitched a lift home Roxie wants to stay 5th July - Kingfisher Picnic ride.  The weather couldn’t have been better.  We had a wonderful ride around the fields followed by a picnic of our usual extremely high standard which was enjoyed by all. Well done to all those who competed at the National Finals - we are proud of you all!Thank you also to all those who put in such hard work coaching the riders, training the horses, preparing the horses and for your support and hard work on location.