Riding for the Disabled held an open morning at the World Horse Welfare Centre, Aboyne, to say a big thank you to everyone.

Purpose of the event on Friday, November 28, was to express gratitude to all those who had donated money or helped in some way so that the Group could purchase a hydraulic mounting lift.

The lift was needed so that the group could enjoy using the facilities at the WHW.

The lift cost £9500 and has meant that riders can now enjoy riding in an indoor environment.

Jill Randals, chairperson of Riding for the Disabled said: “Lessons are no longer cancelled owing to the Scottish climate and, therefore, we can operate for more weeks of the year.”

Attendees to the open morning were then given a short talk by Jill about the history of RDA Deeside and the benefits of having the lift and using the facilities at WHW.

This was followed by watching RDA riders using the hydraulic mounting platform prior to a Christmas-themed musical ride.

Donations for the Easimount lift were received from the Banchory Show, B.G, Banchory and District Round Table, Rotary Club of Banchory St Ternan, Aboyne Craft Club, Aboyne Rotary Club, Charitable Chiels, Ballater and District Medical Amenities, Balmoral Estates, Price Waterhouse Cooper, Banchory Cubs, Loanhead Equestrian Centre, Subsea 7, Bridge Energy, Senergy and Rhind Legacy.

A spokesperson said: “At RDA, our horses and ponies provide therapy, achievement and enjoyment to people with disabilities all over the UK.

“Our network of 500 volunteer groups organise activities such as riding, carriage driving, vaulting and showjumping to up to 28,000 people each year.”

There are roughly 500 RDA groups and centres offering our activities throughout the UK.

These are mostly run by trained volunteers – about 18,000 of them in total – with a few paid staff in bigger centres.

‘‘The spokesperson added: Groups vary in size, opening times and in the activities they offer – but all of them operate to the same high standards of training, professionalism and care.

All RDA groups are individual charities, and have their own board of Trustees, highly qualified instructors and trained volunteers.

Groups are supported by Regional representatives who provide training, education, physiotherapist support and publicity.