King’s Launch New Equestrian Centre Post-Covid
We are delighted to announce details of our new equestrian offering.
As the UK went into lockdown, and equestrian schools and livery yards up and down the country ceased activities, we were forced to take the difficult decision to close our equestrian operation at Netherclay Livery Centre on the edge of Taunton.
Following guidance from the government and the British Horse Society (BHS), there was no knowing when ‘normal life’ would resume. Facing an uncertain future, we had to look at the challenging practicalities of relocating ten horses.
With things on hold and temporary accommodation secured, we were delighted to be approached by members of Taunton Vale Polo Club with an opportunity to establish a new school equestrian centre at stables and land at nearby Orchard Portman. They were keen not only to offer a new home for riding, but also to explore the possibility of creating a King’s Schools polo team. The agreement was signed this week, with works planned for a new arena.
Commenting on the new development, Stephen Tipper and Michael Ball of Orchard Portman Equestrian said: “We are delighted to be welcoming King’s College to the Orchard Portman yard and look forward to working together.”
Our Head of Equestrian at King’s, Emma Edwards, said: “We were sad to see what we had established at Netherclay coming to an end. Our sincere thanks go to all the staff at the livery yard, who were truly fantastic in supporting us as we grew our new equestrian programme over the last two years. We are extremely excited about the next chapter of riding at King’s and the next step in progressing our equestrian provision.”
Our Operations Manager, Darren Potter added: “This is an exciting new development for us, and enhances our existing sport and co-curricular facilities. Although off-site, just around the corner from King’s College, the new riding provision will still deliver the same high standards associated with all our school facilities.”
The new venture will consist of 12 covered stables, a tack room and storerooms, over 10 acres of land, and a 20m x 40m outdoor arena. Off-road hacking is close by and pupils will have access to qualified school instructors and visiting trainers. We will continue to offer weekly lessons at all levels on our school horses, as well as polo lessons with Taunton Vale. Full livery is available for those bringing their horses to school, as well as a shared ownership package that enables pupils to experience owning a horse without the large outlay involved. This option has proved particularly popular with overseas pupils. Places for full livery and shared ownership are already full for this coming term.
For further details, please visit: www.kings-taunton.co.uk/equestrian
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