The Morpeth branch of the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) is thriving at its new home at Northumberland College.

In 2023, the group successfully relocated to the state-of-the-art Equine Centre at Kirkley Hall Campus.

Following a meticulous transition period, the centre continues to host the Morpeth RDA, providing life-changing riding experiences for over 100 members.

Furthermore, the RDA has worked to engage the local community and SEND schools through events, receiving immense positive feedback.

Vice principal Lee Lister said: "The synergy that the RDA provision brings to Kirkley Hall aligns to our organisational values of inclusion, equity and respect.

"The students attending will develop a deep understanding of the power horse riding can have on disabled young people and adults, providing aspiration and inspiration as they plan their future careers in the equine industry."

Hexham Courant: In 2023, the group successfully relocated to the state-of-the-art Equine Centre at Kirkley Hall

The decision to relocate the Morpeth RDA came after numerous discussions between the charity, Northumberland County Council, Active Northumberland, and the college.

These talks resulted in the move to Kirkley Hall Campus, which boasts prime educational facilities complete with an indoor arena, mechanical horse training apparatus, outdoor arenas, schooling fields, stabling and paddocks.

Importantly, the County Council has financially supported upgrades on the property to make it more accessible for disabled riders, ensuring the continued success of the charity.

Councillor Guy Renner-Thompson said: "I am delighted to see our young people making the most of RDA’s excellent new home.

"The impact of Morpeth RDA is life-changing for those involved and I look forward to seeing this new partnership continue to thrive and develop."

Morpeth RDA caters to people with special needs and disabilities, providing them opportunities to enrich their lives through riding specially trained ponies.

With a membership of over 125 riders aged between four and 67, the organization is a beacon of hope for many.

Chair of Morpeth RDA, Michelle Macaulay said: "We’re excited with this new chapter in the history of Morpeth RDA.

"There is great potential for expansion of RDA activities at Kirkley and we hope to be able to offer riding and horse care sessions to more participants in 2024."