Tuesday, 7 November 2017

November News

This year seems to be passing faster than ever. I can hardly believe that, as I write, we are at the end of October. We have had our final activity day for this year celebrating Halloween and it is time for the Pony Centre to close to the public for the winter.

Many of our riding ponies will shortly be leaving for their well-deserved winter holiday and rest, staying with friends and fosterers. Over the past few months, our gentle giant Jensen (aka Knightoncombe Eric) has been undergoing intensive training offsite with Linzi. He is a quiet, sensible pony and has already calmly dealt with trampolines, quad bikes and curious cows; all useful experience for when he returns to the Centre to continue his training over the winter. We will also be bringing on three more ponies who will eventually join our riding team and allow some of our older ponies to step back and enjoy a more leisurely life.

Staff and volunteers are busy preparing to receive this year’s intake of foals. Last year we had three unexpected late arrivals bringing our total intake for last year to 26. One of these three has been named by one of our Crowdfunder donors as part of her reward and the name she chose is Roly. As Roly’s two pals also needed names staff have called them - what else? - Jam and Poly. They are all being handled and when they have been neutered they, too, will move on to a home or grazing site. Most of last year’s foals have now been homed or placed with conservation grazing schemes in Northumberland, Hampshire and Suffolk.

Looking forward to Christmas, we have pony cards and calendars for sale in our online shop via our website together with other pony-related items that would make lovely Christmas presents.

It has been the most amazing year. Six months ago funds were at an all-time low and we were all bracing ourselves to face the closure of the Pony Centre. Since then, thanks to all our wonderful supporters and your incredible response to our Crowdfunder appeal, that has completely changed. We now have money in the bank and can look forward to a much more secure future for all our ponies. So thank you all.

Please note the Centre is now closed for the winter and will re-open for half term on Sunday 11th February 2018.

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Sue Baker's latest book, The Exmoor Chronicles, was launched today at the Exmoor Pony Centre.

Centre Manager, Linzi Green gave a short talk about MMT pony Tom who stars on the front cover complete with saddlebags.

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Anchor Herd Gathering

Staff and ponies from the Centre helped out with the gathering of the Anchor Herd ponies on Winsford Hill yesterday. Linzi is on Yorrick, Karen on Abbi and Lydia on Fudge. 

Monday, 31 July 2017

July News

The Exmoor weather threw the lot at us on our eleventh birthday. It must have been one of the wettest activity days ever at the Pony Centre. Despite that, we had plenty of visitors who cheerfully braved the rain. The Green Room was open for refreshments and drying out, and all the activities and riding took place under cover in the barn.

On 27 July, the Pony Centre hosted the media launch of Claire Lynch’s Wild Exmoor; by all accounts an amazing evening with excellent food prepared and served in the barn to guests dressed in black tie and wellies.  See the video on our facebook page to get a feel for the occasion. Earlier in the month, the Society of Equestrian Artists visited us to draw our wonderful ponies and Linzi and pony Tom joined children’s author Victoria Eveleigh at the Summer Reading Challenge Launch Event at Barnstaple library. Another wet July day but at least the soaking meant Tom wasn’t plagued by flies. Always a silver lining!

From 5 to 20 August, events will be taking place across Exmoor for the 6th Exmoor Pony Festival. A full list of events, including those at the Pony Centre, can be found on our website and facebook page.

And, of course, there are our regular activity afternoons every Thursday throughout August with fun and games and the chance to get up close to our ponies with grooming and pony rides. Refreshments will be available in our Green Room building. These are all-weather events which will be held under cover if necessary. Admission is free with small charges for the activities. Minimum age for riding is 4 yrs.

And just to prove it is never too late to learn, one of our trustees recently celebrated his 70th birthday by having his first ride ever, on pony Fudge, and thoroughly enjoying it. The grin on his face says it all.