Celebrity adventurer Ben Fogle recently took time out from his busy schedule to help young disabled riders complete a 50-mile trek during a recent 12-hour relay.
Ben, also a famed author, broadcaster and writer, joined the lead-a-pony challenge, organised by Wormwood Scrubs Pony Centre to kickstart its 25th anniversary celebrations in 2014.
Covering 550 laps of the centre’s 150m² arena it is hoped the youngsters, who all live with disabilities or special needs, will have achieved a world record. All of the centre’s 19 ponies took part in the challenge – among them Quizzy, who at 39 is the eldest.
Organisers are hoping the event will have raised £25,000. All funds raised will be put towards the centre’s £250,000 target for the next 12 months – £10,000 for every year the centre has been in existence.
We were delighted to welcome Ben to take part in the challenge. Our children and volunteers alike were thrilled to see him and he was a natural with the horses. – Sister Mary-Joy, who founded the stables and still runs them Well done also to everyone who worked tirelessly during our record-breaking bid. It was a fantastic effort on the part of all our young riders, not to mention the ponies also.
Everyone pulled together to make the event a success and now we are just keeping our fingers crossed it was enough to help us achieve this new record.
Over 350 children attend the Pony Centre each year enjoying the interaction with the 19 ponies housed at the WSPC.
The children are taught how to care for the animals as well as ride and are all treated as equals irrespective of their condition. It is a formula which works and has marked benefits building self-esteem and providing the children with a sense of achievement, often for the first time in their lives. All money raised is used towards food and vets bills for the ponies as well as the running costs of the centre.
For further details on the centre or to make a donation log on to www.wormwoodscrubsponycentre.org Pictured top: Ben Fogle (right) with pony Quizzy and Founder and WSPC Proprietor Sister Mary Joy Langdon (left).