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Archived Updates

This page contains previously-shared guidelines for Pony Club activities during the coronavirus pandemic. Please note that these guidelines may have since been superceded by more recent information - see the latest updates here for our current advice.

CEO Update 22nd May

Dear Members, families, volunteers and staff,

This week there has been much excitement around getting our horses and ponies fit. I have seen some wonderful stories about how riding again has been much needed to support our mental health, as lock down has proved a challenging time for many of us. Mental Health Awareness week helped us highlight the importance of connecting with people, so please do reach out for support if you are struggling. It is important that we continue to look after each other as we move on our journey back to some form of normality.

I am aware there are still some of you waiting for your riding school to reopen. Please be a little more patient, our centres want to create the safest environment possible to allow you to enjoy riding again. There are new procedures in place for them to follow, so it might feel different when you return and one to one coaching only is allowed under Government restrictions at this time. I know our centres are looking forward to welcoming our members back.

Following Government Guidance

It is important that we all continue to follow the current Government guidance and that we remember COVID-19 has not gone away. We are lucky to be part of an outdoor sport, that can start enjoying activity. However, I would ask that we stay respectful of others who are not enjoying their 'normal' activities and we should continue to minimise pressure on our NHS services.

  • The Government has restricted sporting activity to outdoors only, so please do not use an indoor arena for one to one coaching.
  • As I shared last week, there is an additional COVID-19 risk assessment available that is to be used in addition to all existing risk assessments. These should always all be followed to protect ourselves and those around us.
  • If you are hiring a venue, please respect and follow the venue rules. This will allow everyone to continue to enjoy the facilities.
  • I also wanted to highlight that there is a lot of advice available for venues, coaches and riders on our BEF partners’ websites, British Dressage, British Showjumping, British Eventing and The British Horse Society, visit their websites to find out more.

Please remember if we choose not to comply with the current guidance and act in a way that is reckless and endangers others, it is possible that the Government will impose additional restrictions on equestrian sport and this will delay the resumption of Pony Club activities. For a useful reminder of The Pony Club Operational Plan and our current Phase 1 and 2, please view our new infographic in the downloads section above.

Furloughed Staff

As activities are restarting, please be reminded that many of The Pony Club staff are still on furlough and we have a limited capacity to support all enquiries. We will continue to do our best to support everyone, but please be patient if there is a delayed response from our team at this time.

Online Competitions and resources

Please also don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and to check the website, to keep up to date with the new additions to the members’ area and with all our online competitions.

  • If you like writing we have the Write2Ride competition with fantastic prizes available - Entries for Juniors close today, Seniors you have until June 14th.
  • If you prefer designing enter the ‘Decorate Your Pony or Hobby Horse’ Competition – closing June 1st.
  • For the artists among you we have Equestrian Hopes and Dreams art competition – visit the dedicated website here and view the amazing entries so far.
  • Next week marks the start of scrapbook fun! Gathering your pens, pencils, glitter, stickers and be prepared to decorate your front covers for the chance to win a surprise and join in the daily games to have some fun!

Enjoy your bank holiday weekend.

Marcus

CEO Update 15th May

Dear Members, families, volunteers and staff,

This week has been full of information and updates due to the changes in the Government’s advice, regarding the lock down.

After speaking with the BEF and the member bodies, I issued The Pony Club's Operational Plan on Tuesday, which provides our phased approach to returning to full activity, at the appropriate time. We were also awaiting further guidance from The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), regarding the opening of outdoor facilities and specifically addressing riding. This has now been released and can be read in full here: GOV.UK – guidance for providers of outdoor facilities. This guidance has not changed our operational plan, but it enables us to provide additional clarity around coaching. At present, this applies to facilities in England, but not Scotland, Northern Ireland or Wales. There are further updates expected and we will keep you informed if guidance changes.

It is important to point out that face to face group Pony Club activities are not permitted under the current Government advice.

We are aware that many of our centres are choosing to stay closed at this time to bring their horses and ponies back to full fitness and ensure they can offer a safe working environment. Centres and coaches that are choosing to reopen should feel adequately prepared and be confident that they can do so safely for their participants and staff.

  • We have drafted a Pony Club Covid-19 risk assessment for face to face activities to be used as appropriate and in addition to the usual risk assessments. Click here to view it.

  • For those offering one to one coaching to under 18’s, a parent or guardian must be present for one to one training sessions for safeguarding purposes, but they must adhere to social distancing and hygiene requirements.

  • All virtual activities should follow our online learning advice available on our website here.

The BEF have also released a statement, including a list of requirements needed as you consider reopening and they can be viewed here.

The British Horse Society have also released risk assessment guidance and templates to support riding centres, which can be viewed here.

I will continue to share urgent updates swiftly and provide you with our weekly update to keep you regularly informed.

CEO Update 12th May

Dear Members, families, volunteers and staff,

Today I have been in further consultation with a number of BEF member bodies as we discussed the best way forward for the equine industry’s ridden and sporting activities. We have been awaiting a plan from the Government and DCMS to provide further guidance in relation to equestrian sport, coaches and centres. This is yet to be released, but we felt we should share our plan today and we will update you as soon as we have more detail.

In preparation for the lock down easing and the resumption of activities The Pony Club has created an operational plan, which has been designed to guide our members, branches, centres, staff and volunteers on the journey to resume all activities over time. At the heart of our phased approach is the welfare and safety of everyone involved in The Pony Club.

It is important to acknowledge that our club is International and that we have many countries that are in a different stage of the pandemic. We have provided 5 phases post lockdown and we ask that you work within the phase appropriate following your local government or country’s advice. We are not in a sprint to reach phase 5 and we will adjust our position should we need to slow down or indeed if we can speed up, in line with the latest Government advice and data.

The operational plan will commence from Wednesday 13th May, with phase 1, riding from home. This phase is about bringing our horses and ponies back into full work and doing this where they are usually based, at livery or at home. We know some have been turned out to grass or just had a maintenance programme in place for welfare reasons and is important we look to increase their fitness slowly. As we have heard the burden on the NHS has lessened and we feel moving back to sensible, considered riding plans to increase fitness is appropriate. As always, we would ask that riders consider the risk of their activity and ride within their capabilities. Take care to bring yourself and your horse or pony back into work slowly. As appropriate online competitions can also resume from home.

We also must remember that the Government have not removed the social distancing guidelines. They have advised us to meet with only 1 person outside of our household. As many of our members are young, a parent or guardian is typically always present when they are tending to or riding their horse or pony. Please remember this when interacting with another person, such as your coach.

The Pony Club operational plan does share the journey to reaching full Pony Club activities, however as we are all aware this could take many months to achieve. I wanted to share the full plan with you all, to be transparent and open around our thinking. We will update it if we feel necessary to do so and I plan to keep you all informed should our thinking change. We are working collaboratively with fellow member bodies of British Equestrian and we will share updates and guidance as soon as they are available.

You can view The Pony Club operational plan at the top of this webpage.

For the latest updates from British Equestrian click here.

CEO Update 7th May

Dear Members, families, volunteers and staff,

It feels like we are all approaching a rather momentous weekend. VE Day celebrations seem even more pertinent at this time, as we reflect on all that happened in World War II, with the steely determination and bravery of everyone involved. I am also aware that we are all watching the news and waiting for the big Sunday update from the Government. I wanted to send this short update so you feel connected to our thinking, but rest assured we will send more news early next week, after we have had a chance to reflect on the latest announcement.

The Pony Club and all BEF Member Bodies have their recovery plans ready to enact if restrictions are lifted to a level where it would be safe to resume ridden activities. We predict this will not be an easy or fast road back to full competition, the safety of all our members and volunteers is paramount. We have been working very hard with member bodies to help develop resources and guidance and we will be sharing support materials next week. These will include the British Horse Society risk assessments for riding centres and coaches to help them on the journey back to normal levels of business, within the phased steps of our recovery plan.

We are ready and waiting for Sunday’s news, so please can I ask you to ‘hold your horses’ until we know further from the Government. I am proud of The Pony Club and how we have represented the equestrian world during this time. We have shown great empathy and compassion to the NHS and Key workers. We have shared our spirit of togetherness and I want us to stay focused on a safe resumption of our sports. 

I also wanted to say thank you to our digital expert, Marty Bibby, for recovering content from our Pony Prep website, which was unfortunately not accessible due to being built on old technology. There are videos, interactive quizzes and some great ways to test your knowledge on points of the pony! Our members area continues to grow with exciting new content every week, remember you can access your area via our Online Activities and Online Resources pages (check the email version of this update for the password).

Enjoy your bank holiday weekend and I will be in touch early next week to share relevant and appropriate updates.

Marcus

CEO Update 1st May

Dear Members, families, volunteers and staff,

I would like to open this week’s update with a thank you to our community of volunteers, centres, members, staff and trustees. These are challenging times and yet we are continuing to show The Pony Club values of Togetherness, Empathy, Respect, Learning and Passion.

We are all pulling together to seek out new ways of working and supporting our members by increasing access to The Pony Club resources and activities. Do not forget we still have our writing and art competitions running. If you are looking to supplement school learning with an equine theme, you can enter a competition with great prizes at the same time. We have also added more resources to the members area which offers an opportunity to keep building your knowledge and could add some fun to your daily exercise.

Information for Branches, Centres and Coaches

Online Learning

Online learning is becoming the new normal and as we become more adept at using the range of platforms available, we need to remember our safeguarding training, the security of the platform and any age restrictions in place.

Centrally our team are using Microsoft Teams to connect virtually, but we are aware many of you are turning to the Zoom platform to deliver or access online training and coaching. There are many documents available to help you navigate how to use Zoom, but we thought we would share a document created internally on best practice and top tips to help you get set up. You can view this here.

Please ensure you are not communicating with young people if they are not of the correct age to use a platform, it is vital that parents or guardians are informed of all communication taking place, to protect both parties. Standard Safeguarding practice is that no adult should be having direct private contact with U18s. Contact from Area Reps, DCs , Proprietors and Coaches should be made to the parent. Please also note that WhatsApp has a minimum age of 16 and displays users’ numbers.

Safeguarding Training

For those looking to renew Safeguarding qualifications, I have been in discussion with British Equestrian and ALL training can now be done online during the current restrictions (including when you would have previously needed a face-to-face session). There is a discussion at the moment about how long this training will be valid for: if you would normally have been due the online refresher, this will be valid for the normal three years, if the online course is replacing a face-to-face session then it will be valid for 18 months in the first instance. This is because you may then be in the situation of going 6 years between face-to-face sessions, which is not being advised. I will keep you updated on this. To book onto the online Safeguarding Course, please go to the PCUK events page here.

First Aid Training

We have also been advised that those with expiring First Aid certificates have been given an extension for a further 3 months on the advice of the HSE. The training at the moment has to be carried out face-to-face but again, online training is being explored.

CPD Training

The Training Committee met today and agreed that CPD can be undertaken online provided you can participate with live interaction and have an element of self-reflection. CPD has to be approved by the Area Rep, who will consult with the Chair of the Training Committee before it will be recognised as an official Pony Club CPD.

Efficiency Tests and Achievement Badges

There are some excellent resources to support The Pony Club efficiency tests and badges. Several Branches and Centres are allowing members to take their achievement badges online if appropriate. The Training Committee is, however, keen to stress that the efficiency tests are not suitable for being taken and tested online. Work towards them and learning in preparation for them can all be done online but the tests need to be taken by the examiner in person.

I hope you have found this update useful and I will continue to communicate weekly, whilst we are in this period of uncertainty. Do continue to visit our website for the latest information and updates on the Creative Activities page and in the Membership Area. Enjoy your weekend and stay safe.

CEO Update 24th April

Dear Members, families, volunteers and staff,

What a busy week at The Pony Club. We were pleased to announce the winners Mary King selected for our Easter bonnet competition. If you haven’t already seen who’s won, please visit our creative activities page and view the wonderful creations, as I mentioned last week, they are spectacular. We are now looking forward to watching the submissions come through for our Art Competition. We know we have many talented members out there and hope you enjoy our theme of Equestrian Hopes and Dreams. You have until June 30th to submit your work, so please visit https://artcomp.pcuk.org, for all the details on how to enter.

Keep checking our Creative Activities page here.

Riding

We know the conversation on riding is a contentious issue, but we do feel it is important to highlight our guidance again. Our stance has not changed since the Government began restrictions and we remain aligned with the BEF and member bodies.

We ask that you do not ride, unless it is necessary for the welfare of the horse or pony.

We do understand that this is an individual decision and that you know what is best to keep our members and your families safe, as well as the best way to manage the welfare of your horse or pony.

However, we should all respect the Government’s message of ‘stay home, protect the NHS, save lives’, and carefully consider the risks associated with riding. As a community, we should not be putting any additional pressure on our emergency and NHS services.

The Pony Club does not endorse any group gathering, online competition or activities involving jumping your horse or pony.

Shared Resources

We have been working hard with our branches and centres to ensure we offer as much support and guidance at this time. As part of this work we have created a collaborative space on Google Drive to post resources everyone can leverage. We have sections on Arts & Crafts, Badges, Quizzes, Pony Club Tests and much more. However, it has come to our attention that many of our volunteer network are part of the vital group of key workers supporting us in even more wonderful ways. Therefore, their time has been limited to make all our resources available to our members.

In light of this, I would like to announce that we have created a member only area on our website, where you can get direct access to many of the resources shared on the Google Drive. We will continue to keep the area updated with new documents over the coming weeks, but we wanted to share the news as soon as possible. To access this new page please check your email for the link and password. We hope this offers more support for members and we hope you enjoy completing the activities. We would love to hear your feedback on the area as we look to develop it in the future. To send your feedback please fill in our contact us form on the website.

Online Safety

As we invite our members to spend more time online joining our competitions, accessing resources, and connecting with their friends, we want to ensure everyone is staying safe. We have very robust safeguarding policies in place to protect our members taking part in Pony Club activities and now more than ever it is important to address keeping yourself safe online. I would encourage all parents to visit the NSPCC website where they share a raft of useful information and links to other organisations who can inform us all when it comes to staying ahead with the latest online risks to our young people.

Looking to the future! It is still an uncertain landscape and the news can change daily, but at The Pony Club we are starting to look ahead. We are mapping out what our summer activities could look like under the current discussions around future restrictions. We want you to be assured we will do all we can to offer our members the best summer possible and we hope this will be spending time with our horses and ponies enjoying the sunshine. I will keep you up to date in the coming weeks and when we can plan more concretely.

Please continue to stay safe in these times and thank you for your continued support.

CEO Update 16th April

Dear Members, families, volunteers and staff,

As we are set to face more weeks in lockdown it is a difficult time for us all. Many of us would be having fun with our horses and ponies planning activities and enjoying sporting competitions but may now have less time with them. At The Pony Club we are working hard to continue to provide you with activities. Easter weekend was great fun to watch firstly with the Easter Bonnet competition, the standard of creations was spectacular. We also had our 2 Legs Not 4 competition and the effort put into your videos was just fantastic to see. Thank you to everyone participating in the fun and I hope the winners are looking forward to receiving their prizes. We continue to plan more activities; the new writing competition has just launched with some amazing prizes, and our art competition will be live on Friday 17th April, open to all our members across the globe

Keep checking our Creative Activities page here.

Funding

This week we have updated information on our website about the Economic Resilience Fund released by the Welsh Government to support local businesses and voluntary organisations, which we hope our centres and branches can benefit from. The Sport England Community Emergency Fund is also available to support those in immediate need, designed to assist grassroots sport and physical activity providers, which covers our branches and centres. There are many more local funds available through an application process which have been shared with us and are listed on our Help and Advice page. Please do contact your Area Rep or Centre Coordinator if you need support.

Welfare

We have also shared advice on how you can be prepared if you do need to call on your vet during this time, with access to The British Equestrian Veterinary Association’s (BEVA) helpful videos. Visit our Help and Advice page to read more.

As we all rally together to support one another it is important that we continue to think about our actions and the impact on the wider community. Whilst we all support the work of our NHS and frontline workers, I am concerned about how fireworks and sky lanterns are now being considered as an addition to our Thursday 8pm clapping. The dangers to animals and buildings could place more burden on our emergency services than people realise. Please stay vigilant of your animals and buildings to mitigate any risks they may face.

Please continue to stay safe in these times and thank you for your continued support.

CEO Update 9th April

Dear Members, families, volunteers and staff,

This has been another varied and challenging week. I am really excited about the launch of the collaboration between The Pony Club and Horse and Country TV. I enjoyed my chat with presenter Jenny Ruddall for her “Check In” series and the opportunity to launch our Easter competition 2 Legs not 4, with the great prize of an interview with Piggy March. International trainer Caroline Moore offered to share her superb training videos with The Pony Club and I am very grateful that these will now be available for free on Horse and Country TV in the “4 years to 5*” programmes, featuring Ros Canter.

We really appreciate the involvement of such high-profile international event riders – both Piggy and Ros are of course Pony Club alumni having been members respectively of the South Norfolk and South Wold Hunt North branches.

I have also been enjoying the wide and varied activities that our members, branches, centres and Areas are getting up to. There are so many creative ideas being passed around on social media and on our Pony Club shared Google drive. The Pony Club together and in action!

For examples of ideas and activities please click here, to view on our Creative Activities page.

As I mentioned in my last update, we are continuing to run The Pony Club carefully and prudently and our team has been working extremely hard over the past few weeks. The trustees took the decision last week to prioritise projects and leverage the Government Job Retention Scheme. This has resulted in more than half of the staff being placed on furlough. We have retained a core of staff who maintain our essential infrastructure, trustees are reviewing this regularly as the situation develops.

Please do view the relevant contact details below, should you need to our support. Our last full staff meeting was emotional this week, but spirits are high and staff are looking forward to coming back as restrictions are lifted and activities restart, so that they can continue to work hard for our members and volunteers.

We have just updated our website Help, Advice and FAQs with the latest information before the Easter weekend - to view it please click the link above.

CEO Update 3rd April

We hope you are keeping well as we come to the close of our 2nd week in isolation. As I am sure you have seen this has been a difficult week for the member bodies within the BEF.

At The Pony Club, the priorities are our members and to ensure we make the best decisions to support the charity.

Cancellations

I am sure you can appreciate we are doing our very best to provide activities and sporting opportunities for our members this year, when it is currently so hard to predict what will be possible. As time has progressed, we are understanding better the medium-term impact of Coronavirus on The Pony Club.

It is with the deepest regret that we have made the decision to cancel the National Championships at Cholmondeley Castle, in light of the scale of this competition, the organisation required and the ongoing uncertainty. This also means the cancellation of area and qualifier competitions until the end of June. We will continue to monitor the situation - individual sports are currently making plans for what might be possible at a local or regional level. As soon as we have the latest on each sport we will share it with you.

Central Pony Club Team

In the current challenging times with our activities being seriously curtailed, fortunately, The Pony Club is in a stronger position than many as a result of previous restructuring and financial prudence. In order to protect that position and keep the organisation with the right skills and structures in place, we are going to take advantage of the Government Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

As a result, 12 out of 22 staff members will be furloughed for 3 weeks from Wednesday 8th April after which we will review the situation. This will mean a reduction in service as projects and activities are prioritised. The situation will be constantly monitored by the Board of Trustees and myself.

Member Support

In normal circumstances we answer over 600 calls a week. This has reduced significantly in the last week to 60 as a result of the reduction in activities. If you have a query or concern please contact your local branch or centre, as our help desk will be unmanned from Wednesday 8th April until further notice.

For specific enquiries please contact the following:

Enquiry Type Contact
Safeguarding

Safeguarding Officer within your branch or centre

Health & Safety

Health & Safety Officer within your branch or centre

To escalate an urgent Safeguarding or Health & Safety concern please ring 02476 698300 and press 9 to speak directly to me.

Membership

Branch Secretary / Centre Proprietor

Branch Returns

Email: finance@pcuk.org

PELHAM – for pilot branches and centres

Email: pelham@pcuk.org

Your Support

Please continue to support our charity by maintaining your membership. We will continue to provide the latest advice whilst also giving our members opportunities to feel part of our community through these difficult times.

  • Your third-party liability insurance will continue to cover horse and rider. We are however advising, in line with BEF guidance that you do not ride, unless it is necessary for the welfare of your horse or pony.
  • We are partnering supportive volunteers and other equestrian organisations to launch online competitions, so please watch our social media channels for more information in the coming days.
  • Our hope is that you continue to build and share the resources available in our online shared drive. Our branches and centres have access to this to support our members locally, for example with the syllabus for badges and tests.
  • Our aim is to continue to provide you with resources to keep building your equine knowledge and staying optimistic about the future.

CEO Update 27th March

Thank you to all our members, families and volunteers for their continued support and understanding in these challenging times. After the announcement from the Prime Minister last night we are all aware of the need to stay at home and keep ourselves and others safe. Our Branches and Centres are full of ideas for home activities to keep you in touch and busy but more ideas are always welcome. Please share social media posts with the hashtags #PonyClubCarryOn and #PonyClubTogether so that we can all see what fun things are happening around the country.

As well as looking after each other, we all want to look after our horses and ponies. We have added to our previous advice the latest update from the British Equestrian Federation (“BEF” - our parent body, which includes the Olympic Equestrian Sports, RDA, BHS and World Horse Welfare as members).  The information includes useful advice on managing the care of horses, whether at a yard or home and further notes on riding, veterinary and farrier care. To view the full document, please click here:  https://bef.co.uk

Statement from the BEF;

The British Equestrian Federation urges all members of the equestrian community to strictly adhere to the Government’s directive to stay at home unless it’s absolutely necessary to travel. The welfare of horses, and other livestock, is still essential, making your travel as an employee, owner or volunteer to provide care valid under the current guidance. Please keep your own health and safety in mind, as well as that of everyone around you.

Summary of the BEF information headings:

• Guidance for looking after horses at a shared yard
 - Practising good hygiene and other tips for going to the yard, at the yard, leaving the yard and arriving home
• Prepare for self-isolation
 - make a plan for someone to care for your horse if you are ill or unable to get to them,
• Riding
 - There is currently no Government guidance that we are aware of to stop riding, it is down to an individual decision if this necessary. It is sensible to avoid activities with an increased risk of injury and be mindful of other people if you must hack out. Unnecessary travel is to be avoided, including lessons or training and transporting your horse for anything other than emergency care.
• Equine professionals
 - Please contact your own vet for their current policy on essential visits, which may include booster vaccinations.
 - Farriers are permitted to work, please contact yours for advice if needed.

Horse Feed and Bedding

Advice from the BEF:

We have all been asked not to panic buy household food and items. The same applies to our horses. Feed merchants and bedding suppliers hold plenty of stock and there is no need to stockpile excess amounts.

Shopping for animal feed and supplies is classed as essential activity.

Previous Updates

21st March 1pm

The Pony Club Shared Resources

Staff have been working really hard to create the peer sharing platform “The Pony Club Shared Resources”. We are using Google Drive to save and share ideas and resources. All branches and Area Reps have an existing Google-based email which will give them access to the suite of Google apps. Centres and coaches will need a Google account to access this drive and we will be working over the next few days to develop the permission to allow access. In the meantime, we would ask that people support each other and share their expertise and develop our community resource. Go to https://drive.google.com and log in with the branch email and click the “Shared Drives” tab.

We plan to share these alternative activities across social media, so please do take photos and post with the hashtag #PonyClubCarryOn so that we can share nationally some of the great ideas and fun you are all having.

Video Conferencing

There are many solutions for face-to-face online contact which will be useful for meetings, discussions and also sharing live activities. We are using Microsoft Teams for our staff and national committee meetings, we also recommend Google Hangouts as a useful tool. Online Tutorials are easily available.

Online Competitions

We are working with partners to set up and deliver online competitions.

Dressage Anywhere
The Pony Club and Dressage Anywhere have teamed up to offer a special Online Dressage Championships for all Pony Club members. Dressage Anywhere is a great way to compete online from anywhere, without having to leave your yard. Simply register for free, choose a class to enter, then ride and film your dressage test and upload it for judging. You’ll receive a link to download your score sheet and be in the running for rosettes!
This year each monthly competition from April 2020 to July 2020 will be a qualifying round towards The Pony Club Online Dressage Championships 2020. There are classes from Walk & Trot all the way up to Open level. All you need are two scores at 60% or above to qualify! Go to www.dressageanywhere.com to get started.

Horse Events
Horse Events are promoting three separate competitions; a Virtual Team Challenge, Virtual Dressage, and Virtual Jumping with Style. All have classes and prizes for Pony Club teams and members. Find out more on https://www.horse-events.co.uk/events/virtual/

With more of us having to stay at home and keep physically away from others, it is important to keep in contact and enjoy activities within the government guidelines.

Please continue to keep yourself and your friends and family safe.

18th March 7pm

Today we have been investigating options to facilitate the use of a peer-sharing platform.  This will enable our Pony Club community to share your creative and innovative ideas and resources for enjoying Pony Club activities within the government guidelines of restricted social contact and travel. We will set it up, initially as a pilot, and provide basic user guides to be a self-running and self-supporting tool.  We will be releasing details in the next few days. We are also exploring the use of an online learning platform to support test and badge preparation, online horse and pony care etc.

I would like to apologise to members for not receiving the initial communications directly by email. The information went on the website and Facebook and was emailed to branches and centres. I have included the last two communications below and we will ensure members are included in all future emails.

Everyone is pulling together. I would like to paraphrase the words of the World Board Chair of Guides, Ana Maria Mideros “We face difficulties with optimism. We are resourceful. We are creative. As a global youth movement, we are building a generation of responsible and resilient citizens.”

17th March 7pm

Thank you for your support and understanding of the need for The Pony Club to comply with government advice to safeguard our members, families, staff and volunteers.

We are planning to provide regular updates as the situation changes. This page will hold information and provide you with the latest advice, together with FAQs.

In the short term, lots of centres and branches are exploring activities that can still be undertaken whilst following government guidance, such as online learning, video dressage competitions and bringing The Manual of Horsemanship to life with video how-to’s and quizzes. There are many creative and innovative ideas being shared. Our Training Committee is meeting next week and will be looking at practical tips and ideas from across our Pony Club community and how these can be shared. 

If you missed last night’s announcement, here it is:

Covid-19 Statement 16th March 7:30pm

The Pony Club Board of Trustees has been in discussion today and has made the very difficult decision to cancel all centrally organised events.

This includes the Winter Triathlon at Stoke Mandeville on Sunday 22nd March and The Winter Series Final at Arena UK 4th / 5th April.

Following The Prime Minister’s announcement this evening, requesting that we minimise social contact and non-essential travel, we advise that ALL Pony Club activities cease with immediate effect.

We would like to thank our members, parents and volunteers for their support of The Pony Club in this decision to play our part in preventing the spread of Covid-19.  

Please continue to stay safe and well during this difficult time.

We will keep you updated as soon as we have any further information.