Riding for the disabled charity appealing for help with ‘urgent’ funds

Joyce Walford, from Dove Court Care Home at Wisbech, met pony Roger at the Magpie Centre Open Day la

Joyce Walford, from Dove Court Care Home at Wisbech, met pony Roger at the Magpie Centre Open Day last year which gave dementia patients a chance to meet the horses. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2019

A Norfolk riding for the disabled centre is appealing for help with ‘urgent’ funds in the run up to winter following cancelled activities and events.

Colin Perriss, chair at the Mapgie Centre Riding for the Disabled at Wallington Hall, near Downham M

Colin Perriss, chair at the Mapgie Centre Riding for the Disabled at Wallington Hall, near Downham Market. Picture: Magpie Centre - Credit: Archant

The West Norfolk Riding for the Disabled Association (WNRDA) based at the Magpie Centre at Wallington Hall, near Downham Market, is struggling to bring in much-needed money to help with running costs and horse care.

The centre provided more than 100 riding and carriage driving lessons a week to people with physical and learning disabilities but under lockdown measures it has been unable to offer them, which has resulted in a loss of donations.

And with 12 horses and ponies to look after, it said the need for funds has never been more urgent.

A spokesperson said: “The ponies live out, with field shelters, but in winter they need hay to supplement the grass in their paddocks, plus weatherproof rugs to help them withstand the elements.”

Following their loss of income, WNRDA’s chairman Colin Perriss, has set up a GoFundMe campaign, with a target of £995 to help raise money for the expenses.


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On the GoFundMe page, Mr Perriss said: “Much of our income is generated by the riding and carriage driving lessons we provide and the coronavirus crisis has meant that we have not been permitted to run our usual lessons.

“The second lockdown has arrived just as we were starting to get our clients back riding and generating some much-needed income and with winter fast approaching this has made an already challenging situation worse.

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“Our horses do an amazing job and we hope that you will feel able to help us get them through the coming months.”

The Magpie Centre is looking to expand its activities to able-bodied riders when Covid regulations allow, which will include first rides, experience rides and carriage driving.

To book, contact the centre on 01553 810202 or email magpiecentrewnrda@hotmail.co.uk or visit its website on www.rda-westnorfolk.org.uk

The charity is selling Christmas cards, which can be purchased via its website or at West Winch Post Office and Shouldham Antiques and Gifts on Eastgate Street.

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