Welcome to the Area 8 website!
I warmly welcome you to our website, and I am delighted to be your Area Rep. I have been involved with the Pony Club since I was 4, (as a Member, A Test Holder, Instructor, parent and DC) and I currently show no signs of stopping! You are always welcome to get in touch with me with any ideas or questions on firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Pony Club offers all of us a lifelong interest, knowledge and love of horses and ponies. Training and enjoyment, challenge and achievement, fun and friendship are all equally important to us. While it is always wonderful to see Area 8 Members succeeding at the Pony Club Championships and other competitions, I feel personal achievement and growth are the most valuable aspects of Pony Club life: lifelong friendships and Horsemanship are our true goals. I am passionate about training, and am especially pleased to be on the Pony Club Training Committee. The Pony Club offers you an excellent route for refining your horsemanship through its unique Test ladder, with Achievement Badges and Efficiency Tests going right up to the A test, which is highly thought of all over the world.
As a member of every Branch in Area 8, you have the chance to go to Pony Club Camp, but be warned: this can become a lifelong habit! If you ask the Instructors or Branch Committee members why they volunteer to run your Branch, many of them will say it is because of their own enjoyment as members of the Pony Club. All Branches are run entirely by volunteers without whom it would be impossible to provide such a varied programme, and we are so grateful to all of them. Branches welcome every parent as a volunteer, as much for their skills outside the equestrian world as in it. There are a myriad of jobs to be done!
We run 14 different Area Competitions in Area 8, catering for a broad range of members, with or without a horse or pony, each challenge needing different skills and talents. Some are unique to Area 8: the Gosling Cup, the Bloom Cup, the (brand new!) Pony Club Challenge, Houghton Horse Trials Pony Club Team Showjumping, Burghley Horse Trials Pony Club Team Showjumping, and more. Many Branches also run team ‘friendly competitions’ for members and their families – there is no ‘i’ in team! Our venues are provided by very generous landowners and equestrian centres who on many occasions give their facilities for free, or if they do charge, keep their charges to a minimum to support the Pony Club, who are grassroots of equestrian sport.
As a senior Branch member, you can join the Instructors at your Branch, or even use your Pony Club B test as part of your Gap Year travel plans. Even if you no longer own a horse, you continue to benefit from Pony Club Insurance, so that you can say yes to some exciting invitation to ride, or go hunting, knowing that you have the necessary insurance cover.
I hope you will enjoy being part of Area 8. If you notice that our recently updated Area 8 website needs any page added or corrected, please contact Frances, our Web Administrator. Please do also send Frances photographs, reports and any news you may have!
Good luck everyone!