The Horse Rangers Association was founded in 1954 by Raymond Gordon as a voluntary youth movement centered on horsemanship.
We are a uniformed youth movement with horses. We provide riding instruction, stable training and other activities connected with horses and general recreation. All instruction and care for the horses is provided by volunteers and members.
The Harwich troop was formed in 1990 by Sioux Thorpe, Mandy Lilley and Tinks Land and has continued to grow ever since. When the Horse Rangers Association was re-structured In January 2004 the Harwich troop became the Horse Rangers Association (Harwich) Limited, an independent registered charity. We are still proud of the Horse Ranger heritage and wear the same uniform still as our parent troop at Hampton Court.
The Horse Rangers Association is not a riding school, we are a children’s charity whose aim is to enable members to become interested and involved with horses, regardless of their background. Membership is open to young people over the age of 8 who are resident in the Tendring and Colchester area who do not have their own horse or pony. At the Harwich Troop we seek to give opportunities for young people, regardless of background, ability or financial circumstances, to be around and work with horses and ponies in a safe environment. We aim to build character, provide structure, discipline and have lots of fun.
The Horse Rangers Association is focused on teaching young people all about horses, beyond just learning to ride. Children progress through levels of learning and earn badges and awards to measure their achievements. As they grow older, Rangers can also increase their rank, and earn more rights and privileges. At every session, Rangers are awarded marks not only for their riding skill, but also for their attire, knowledge and efficiency in working around the stables.
At the Horse Rangers Association, we are dedicated to giving everyone the best possible experience with us. To help ensure this, we have set our nine key principles for all riders, instructors, and volunteers to follow.
1. Open to all
Subscriptions are kept as low as possible and we operate a grants policy at the discretion of the Trustees to ensure that no one is denied access as a result of their financial circumstances. Rangers come from all types of background, with the majority receiving state funded education.
2. Equal Opportunities
Membership is available to all young people. Where possible, those with special needs are integrated within the mainstream activities of the organisation. However, some benefit more from joining our local Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA), to whom we provide ponies.
3. Personal Development
As they progress, Rangers learn the skills necessary to look after the horses and ponies. Rangers develop confidence and a sense of pride in themselves and their abilities.
4. Caring for Others
As they get older, Rangers take on additional responsibilities by supervising the younger Rangers.
The benefit that a young person gets from being a Ranger will depend upon their level of commitment to achieving their individual goals. The organisation is open throughout the year and members are expected to attend as often as possible.
We operate a badge system to encourage and reward personal development.
The range of opportunities available to Rangers should increase as they progress and develop their skills base. Rangers are encouraged to take on responsibilities as leaders and instructors when they become adults.
Rangers and volunteers should find participation in activities at the HRA both enjoyable and satisfying.
Horse riding is a dangerous sport; we take health and safety seriously and try to mitigate the risk to members through the implementation of best practice procedures.