Clare Balding opens new Cranleigh Riding for the Disabled facility celebrating 50 years at Casi’s Farm

Broadcaster, journalist, author and equestrian national treasure Clare Balding OBE, opened the newly refurbished Cranleigh Riding for the Disabled (CRDA) facility on Monday 1st October 2018.

The Riding High Campaign, the fundraising arm of Cranleigh RDA, successfully raised in excess of £750,000 to totally remodel and refurbish the stables and facilities. Generous contributions came from charitable trusts - including £150,000 from the London Marathon Charitable Trust - local charities, local benefactors and individual fundraisers, all of whom recognise the benefits of riding for those with special needs.

“It’s a delight watching an RDA team at work and I’ve really enjoyed seeing the horses, Aero, Rafferty, Bob and all the others, transport their riders to a world where they have freedom and movement – it’s magical to see, said RDA ambassador Clare.”

I am constantly blown away by the transformation the RDA can have on people’s lives. Through their relationship with horses, children and adults get confidence, a sense of satisfaction and possibly most importantly, a challenge. This is a very special, life enhancing experience for riders, families, volunteers and horses!”

Cranleigh RDA Chair, Liz Harrison, says, “We are extremely grateful to our fantastic benefactors who have ensured the future of the indoor riding facilities at Casi’s Farm. Cranleigh RDA is a successful riding programme for people with disabilities and additional needs. The benefits go far beyond the purely physical however, as riding and contact with horses offers a sense of freedom and fun and can help transform lives.”

London Marathon Charitable Trust Chief Grants Officer, Sarah Ridley says: “The Trust’s objective is to encourage and support everyone to be active because of the physical and mental health benefits that result. Riding for the Disabled is a perfect example of successfully extending our mission to all adults and children. We are delighted to have helped Cranleigh RDA take this important service into the future.”

Amongst many generous donors, two local organisations, the Godalming Woolsack Rotary and the County Club Guildford supported the Riding High Campaign with fund raising events.

“Cranleigh RDA is an exceptional resource for our local disabled community and fund raising continues,” says Cranleigh RDA patron and HM Lord-Lieutenant of Surrey, Michael More-Molyneux. “There are currently over 200 riders, mostly children, who benefit from the service every year and around 180 local people kindly give up their time as volunteers to deliver the service and help those in need – well done to you all!”

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