Praise for centre’s quality of disabled riding lessons

Guy Opperman MP, right, during his visit to the Pegasus Centre in Tranwell.
Guy Opperman MP, right, during his visit to the Pegasus Centre in Tranwell.

A Northumberland MP was impressed by the riders, volunteers and activities available during a visit to the Pegasus Centre.

During his visit, Guy Opperman watched as disabled children from Collingwood School and Media Arts College in Morpeth and Hexham Priory School were put through their paces on horses and ponies by instructors and helpers.

He spent almost two hours touring the site and meeting staff, volunteers and para-dressage rider Gayle Bloomfield, as well as students from Kirkley Hall Equestrian Centre – part of Northumberland College – who attend the facility in Tranwell, near Morpeth, for work experience.

The MP for the Hexham constituency also spoke with members of the Morpeth RDA (Riding for the Disabled) Group, which is based at the purpose-built centre, and volunteers from the Slaley Group who support the lessons provided for the riders from Hexham Priory School.

Mr Opperman said: “It was wonderful to visit the Pegasus Centre and see the amazing work that members of the Morpeth RDA Group and other volunteers do for so many members of the Northumberland community.

“I was delighted to see so many children enjoying their riding lesson. Not only is this activity amazing therapy and character building, it is also great at building up core muscles which are very important for their development.

“I have nothing but praise for the charity and the staff at the centre and I encourage people to support their work.”

He added that he was impressed with the Kirkley Hall students’ attitude. They told him their time at the facility is proving to be very useful.

Morpeth RDA Group trustee Sam Orde, who is also national chairman of the Riding for the Disabled Association, accompanied Mr Opperman during his visit.

She said: “Whilst, as a former jockey, Guy has a knowledge of horses and an appreciation of what we do at the Pegasus Centre, I hope he found it interesting to learn more about how we help more than 300 children and adults with disabilities every year and how we obtain and care for our horses and ponies.

“We’re always interested to hear from companies and individuals willing to support our work. They can call 01670 518219 for more information.”