Birthday presentation for riding charity

Sunny and Leah wins prize.
Sunny and Leah wins prize.

Pub landlords have celebrated nine years behind the bar by handing over a wad of cash to charity.

Nigel and Sue Anstead, marked their anniversary of running The White Horse, in Newnham Avenue, by presenting £1,795.74 to The Elisabeth Curtis Centre, in Bromham.

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The charity is part of the Riding For The Disabled Association and currently provides riding lessons for about 80 people.

Mrs Anstead said this is the third year she and her husband have raised funds for the charity after they befriended a regular customer whose disabled child rides there.

She said: “The benefits of riding are amazing, particularly for people with mental issues. It gives them such confidence when they can manage to get up on a horse. I know I wouldn’t do it!”

During the past six years, the pub and its customers have raised more than £184,000 to support about 50 other charities chosen by regulars, through quiz nights, raffles and other events. It’s latest donation was made last Thursday (January 9).

The Elisabeth Curtis Centre currently has eight ponies carefully selected to work with disabled riders. As it has stables for nine ponies it is looking to find one more, along with appealing for more volunteers to help run the service, and for someone to train to be an instructor.

Charity chairwoman Jan Tozer said it costs about £40,000 a year to run the centre, which is raised entirely through donations.

She added: “The pub has been wonderful raising considerable funds.”

As well as the day-to-day running costs, the money will go towards a vet bill for treating Sunny, a 19-year-old pony who has been at the centre since 2001. Mrs Tozer said: “Sunny is an absolutely superb pony, with an excellent temperament. We think he injured himself last Easter horsing about in the field. We thought he was healed as he passed two vet’s inspections and returned to work in September but he’s gone slightly lame again.”

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