My goodness, what shock of a year for everyone. Little did we know when we shut our gates in March, that they would remain like that until the following September.
It is of course not just as easy as that where animals are concerned. The most important part of our charity cannot just be shut in a field and forgotten, they still need to be cared for and fed on a daily basis. Fortunately there was a core of volunteers always ready to support and help Linda Dodgson, who is responsible for the daily well being of our horses.
We kept in contact with our schools and volunteers throughout lockdown, giving regular updates on the situation at Willington. Then came the time to consider what needed to be in place for reopening and to keep everybody as safe as possible. It was like a military operation putting policies rules and procedures in place but we make it and are delighted to tell you all that we reopened our gates in August, primarily taking individuals and testing out our COVID regulations. We reopened to our schools at the beginning of term, in September.
It was wonderful to see all the volunteers returning and some new recruits and it was so euphoric for us all, the children and school staff to be riding again. Sadly, being five horse down initially we could only ride five children in each session. Amanda Varley on or our amazing Trustees has however worked hard and found us two beautiful new horses and is looking hard for more. This is not only an expensive project but also finding suitable horses for our children and adults is like looking for `hens` teeth!!`.
We are very dependent upon our supporters for funding and hugely appreciate the gifting and fund raising so many of you and your organisations do to support us.
At this time we would like to send a big thank you to the Aesopians from John O`Gaunt Golf Club for their incredibly generous donation just before Christmas and for inviting one of our volunteers to join them at their pre Christmas dinner to talk about what happens at BDHRA and to collect their donations.
We managed to hold a COVD style Christmas Party
We hope you like our photos