AN equestrian centre for the disabled is appealing for sponsorship to enable some of its riders to take part in a national championship.
Nine riders at the Pegasus Centre at Tranwell, near Morpeth, are heading to the Riding for the Disabled Association’s national dressage championships at Hartbury in Gloucestershire next month.
Five members of the association’s Morpeth group, based at the centre, achieved the qualifying standard for the dressage competition.
And they have been joined by a further four following a qualifying event held in Carlisle for the countryside challenge competition.
One of those to qualify is Gayle Bloomfield, recently named as national champion in the restricted grade-two class at the winter national para championships on her horse Bartie.
The other qualifying riders are Jess Southwick, Robyn Rowntree, Michael Benson, Ryan Gillespie, Stefan Storey, Kim Chapman and mother and daughter Gillian and Caitlin McHale.
Centre manager Martin Peagam said: “We are delighted with the success of our riders.
“This success is a reflection not only of the dedication and hard work put in by the riders, but also of the wonderful support they receive from staff and volunteers.”
However, that success will come at a price.
“While we are very pleased with the success of our riders, it now means that we have to find the funds to pay for the transport and accommodation for the horses and riders, as well as for the staff and volunteers who need to accompany them”, said Martin.
“It is a problem for us, but a nice one to have.”
Martin is appealing to anyone interested in sponsoring riders to contact him on (01670) 518219.
The Pegasus Centre, a purpose-built centre for disabled riders, was set up by the association’s Morpeth group, Blyth Valley Arts and Leisure and Northumberland County Council.
Each week, more than 100 riders of all ages from throughout the region take part in riding lessons, competitions and other activities there.