Dartmoor Pony Heritage Trust

Dartmoor Pony Heritage Trust Logo

Devonshire-based Dartmoor Pony Heritage Trust has announced the appointment of Debbie Leach as its new Chief Executive. She will join the charity in July.

Leach was appointed after an extensive recruitment process led by the board of trustees of the Dartmoor Pony Heritage Trust (DPHT). She is currently the Chief Executive of Thames21, an environmental charity for rivers which she expanded and developed to become a successful multi-faceted NGO, connecting local communities with river landscapes and delivering technical environmental solutions whilst working with stakeholders from academic scientists to government to major companies. 

Leach said:

The native heritage pony is an essential part of Dartmoor’s culture and precious natural spaces and I am committed to ensuring that these beautiful animals thrive where they belong, on Dartmoor. 

People love seeing the ponies in their natural environment, but more than that, they also play an important and proven role in helping to tackle the growing nature emergency and loss of wildlife in the UK. 

In localities such as Dartmoor, we have seen how the pony improves the natural environment for wildlife with their natural grazing habits helping to increase biodiversity. This benefit must be investigated and developed further.”

The Trust, a registered charity that is dedicated to the preservation and conservation of the Dartmoor pony breed and the Dartmoor landscape, works with local farmers and breeders in Dartmoor to advance education, raise awareness, participate in research and assist the development of practical, sustainable herds of heritage ponies that benefit the natural landscapes of Dartmoor.


The DPHT’s mission to protect and preserve confirms the primary beneficiaries of the charity are the pony breeders and keepers. The DPHT has three goals:-

  1. To protect and preserve as a species for the benefit of the public and the environment the native ponies of Dartmoor in conjunction with the Dartmoor Pony breeders and farmers.
  2. To advance the education of the public in relation to the native ponies of Dartmoor and wider aspects of Dartmoor’s landscape, biodiversity, archaeology and heritage.
  3. To promote the benefits of the native Dartmoor Pony and be a primary source of Dartmoor Ponies for equine activities and conservation.

To find out more about the DPHT visit their website.

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