Berwickshire’s Riding for the Disabled group are launching a huge fundraising push in order to buy a piece of specialist equipment.
The group is holding a Grand Auction to put money towards a mechanical horse simulator.
The auction is to take place in the Volunteer Hall, Duns on May 8 at 7pm. The tickets are priced at £10, which includes a glass of wine and a finger buffet. A bar will also be available on the night.
The cost of the simulator is about £25,000, a figure the group as to raise on their own as it receives no national funding and has to meet its own running costs.
The simulator will enable the group to offer riding to people who may not be able for various reasons to ride a real horse, and will also assist with rider and vaulter assessments.
There are over 50 lots for auction on the night, including a bottle of 30 year old Highland Single Malt Whiskey donated by Simpsons Malt. and a Manchester United Shirt signed by young England player Luke Shaw, donated by the club.
There are also two tickets to a Celtic SPL 2015/16 season game donated by the Scottish club, a day’s fly fishing from a boat with motor, kindly supplied by Coldingham Loch Fly Fishery, and many more.
To view or download the full catalogue, prospective bidders can visit the group’s website at www.berwickshirerda.org.uk/.
Within the catalogue there is also a form for ordering tickets and for placing bids by post.
Neil McMurdo of RDA Berwickshire told the Berwickshire News: “We know this is a lot of money, and things are just getting started, but this machine could make all the difference to people. It’s a similar one to that used by several top jockeys in training.”
At the moment the group is offering sessions every day of the week for 40 clients, aged from three years old to over 60, who are helped by 40 volunteers who use five horses and ponies. Riding and vaulting lets clients take part in a sport that improves balance and coordination and helps with communication and memory. Interaction with horses and helpers raises self esteem, offering a chance to work in a team. Riders also have the opportunity to take Grade Tests and enter competitions.
Tickets for the auction can be obtained from the riding school as well as at Romanes Pharmacy, Market Square Duns., Harbro (formerly Border Farm Supplies) Hilary’s Women’s Clothes Shop, 3 South St, Duns and Romanes Pharmacy, Church Street, Eyemouth.