HRH The Princess Royal’s visit to Kent, 4th May, 2017
Visit to Arrow and Bexley Riding for the Disabled Association Groups
On 4th May HRH Princess Anne, President of the Riding for the Disabled Association, visited The Arrow Riding Centre in Dartford, for riders with special needs, to celebrate 35 years since the Centre opened and also to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Bexley Group RDA. Qualified coaches work with physiotherapists to develop tailor-made programmes for each rider and provide riding lessons and therapy to individuals and young people of all ages and abilities. The organisations rely on volunteers and donations to operate and are non-profit organisations run by dedicated staff and teams of people who give their time to volunteer there. The Dartford based organisation is led by Val and Ken Blake and a group of 55 volunteers, the centre is entirely self-funded and has to raise over £140,000 each year and the Bexley Group’s Chairman is Valerie Collins.
The Princess Royal was given an extensive tour including watching displays involving dressage, gymnastic exercises, and musical drills. HRH then met all the display riders, horses, staff, volunteers, a number of un-mounted riders, and presented long service awards to volunteers from both branches of Bexley RDA and Arrow Group RDA Dartford.
Pictured below Princess Anne is seen awarding rosettes to riders and enjoying the riding displays. All images have been supplied courtesy of Matt James at www.sevenoaks-photography.co.uk
Save The Children Shop, Maidstone
Later in the day The Princess Royal made a visit to the Save The Children Shop in Maidstone which has been in operation since 1980, some volunteers having been with the shop for over 20 years. HRH was escorted round the premises and met volunteers and presented three long service certificates too.
First World War Centenary Woods Project, Leeds Castle
In the evening The Princess Royal attended a Dinner at Leeds Castle in support of the First World War Centenary Woods Project, of which she is Patron.