Paralympic Champion Opens New Hoof Club Facility

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Paralympic Champion Opens New Hoof Club Facility

Five-time Paralympic gold medallist Anne Dunham OBE officially opened the Hoof Club CIC Building in Braydon, Wiltshire, this April 2017. The new facility has been converted from a disused farm building into a training centre to get more of the local community involved in horse riding and horse care. The centre comprises an accessible classroom, clubroom and office thanks to £68,000 of National Lottery funding from Sport England’s Inspired Facilities fund. The restroom facilities have also been upgraded.

Joining Anne to mark the event was James Gray, conservative MP for North Wiltshire and the major of Royal Wootton Bassett Cllr Mary Champion, also sister to the famous grand national winning jockey Bob Champion MBE.

Said Anne Dunham:

“I really do welcome the Hoof Club. It gives children from all backgrounds a chance to get involved in horse riding and horse care and it really broadens their horizons. I come from a similar establishment where I rode the centre’s horses because like many others, I could not afford to have my own horse. The Hoof Club allows children to really build their confidence by being around, and riding, the horses.”

Both James Gray MP and Cllr Mary Champion agreed with Anne and praised the new facility and its benefits to the local community.

The Hoof CIC Building will also become a cornerstone for the Special Educational Needs (SEN) community and can offer immediate free taster sessions to SEN/D departments of schools and colleges. It will enable the Hoof Club to increase its membership and allow more children to take part in its learning and tuition programs, courses and lessons.

Since 2011, Inspired Facilities has been helping breathe new life into tired community sports facilities and converting existing buildings into venues suitable for grassroots sport. This grant was awarded alongside partnership funding from Rein & Shine Ltd, a thriving livery yard, riding school, competition centre and facility hire business from which the club is based.

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Hoof Club CIC director, Johanna McDonald, said: “Our club has been widely embraced by communities near and far and we have achieved over 100 members in the last two years. Thanks to Sport England, the new funding will allow us to significantly extend our membership and range of activities. The children thrive on spending their evenings, weekends and holidays out in the fresh air doing something they love and making great friends whilst learning and progressing in riding and horse care.”

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Author: Suzanne Ashton Founder, Everything Horse email: sashton@everythinghorseuk.co.uk

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