Tuesday May 30, 2023
For National Pony Club updates and information please go to pcuk.org
Tests, Training, Badges & YELA

Tests and Achievement Badges at The Burghley Pony Club

The Pony Club training structure encourages members to take tests which enable them to learn progressively about horse and pony care and riding. These include:

  • Efficiency Tests
  • Progressive Tests
  • Achievement Badges and Mini-Achievement Badges
  • Competition Badges

Pony Club Efficiency Tests:

These tests are a very important part of the Pony Club. The Burghley encourages working towards these and there are opportunities throughout the year to take part in Training, sometimes in conjunction with another Pony Club or with the Bulby Riding School Pony Club Centre. The tests are not meant to be frightening, but rather to show how well you can ride and look after your pony.  There are 5 tests, E is the easiest and A is the most difficult.  You need to do each test in turn, so its E, then D, then D+, then Riding and Road Safety, then C, then C+, then B (which has 2 parts – Riding Test and Horse and Pony Care Test), then AH and finally the A Test.  The Pony Club A Test is a really important test and is recognised worldwide as an excellent qualification.  After you have passed each test you will be given a certificate for your wall and a different coloured felt to put under your pony club badge on your hacking jacket.  Further information about these tests can be found here.

Training courses for each level are usually held annually. Sarah holds ‘waiting lists’ for each of the tests and these individuals will be offered places first when a course is scheduled.  If you are interested in training for the above, or being added to a ‘waiting list’, please contact Sarah Hind for further information.  

Pony Club Progressive Tests:

Progressive Tests allow Members to work towards Tests in between Efficiency Test levels E and C+. There are four levels of Progressive Tests; Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. Although the Burghley Pony Club currently don’t formally work towards these, the syllabus for these tests forms the basis of instruction at our rallies.  Further information about these tests can be found here.

Pony Club Achievement Badges:

The Pony Club offers both equine and non-equine Achievement Badges, together with Mini Achievement Badges for younger Members. These aim to help you to learn a wide range of skills like first-aid, farming, map reading, saddlery, road safety and grooming.

As a Branch we hold unmounted rallies where members can come along (particularly in the winter months) and take part in training towards some of the Achievement badges.    We also try to incorporate badges into some of our mounted rallies for our younger members, and there are opportunities to complete other achievement badges during our Summer Camps.  The Burghley also offers certain badges which can be worked on at home.

We encourage all of our members to do the Road Safety badges as these are required before some of the Efficiency Tests can be taken.

If you are interested in training for any Achievement Badges – or if you or a family member have expertise in any area covered by these badges and would like to assist in the training – we would be delighted to hear from you. Please contact Sarah Hind for further information.

Pony Club Competition Badges:

The Pony Club Competition Badge range has been designed to highlight the important issues in each of the nine competitive disciplines and encourage good training of horses and ponies. The badges complement the Achievement Badge ranges and provide riders with fun opportunities to improve their riding or learn new skills in a discipline they haven’t tried before. The Pony Club disciplines are:


  • Dressage
  • Eventing
  • Show Jumping
  • Mounted Games
  • Polo
  • Polocrosse
  • Pony Racing
  • Tetrathlon
  • Endurance Riding


These badges require progressive training and practice to achieve, and can be worked on, practised for and tested during rallies and camps. Further information about these tests can be found here and the respective discipline managers would be delighted to answer any questions you may have.



Open to all our 13-25 year old members

The Young Equestrian Leaders Award (YELA) is an award scheme designed to recognise the time and effort lots of our members already give to equestrianism, including all the time they take to help at Pony Club events.

It runs over three progressive levels, bronze, silver and gold. Bronze requires just 20 hours of volunteering and introduces skills in responsibility, organisation and communication, and Silver and Gold develop these further.

Burghley Pony Club believes that the YELA demonstrates commitment, leadership and responsibility and could provide a springboard to a whole host of fantastic experiences in equestrianism as well as looking impressive on a UCAS form/personal statement.

We’d be delighted to support any members who are interested in starting the Award – please have a look at the website www.yela.org.uk and then get in touch with Sarah Hind or any of our event organisers to start building your hours.


2022 Efficiency Test Success

This year has been a bumper year for Achievements at Burghley Pony Club. Congratulations to everyone who has worked so hard to achieve these excellent results:

Lunging Test

Emily G

C+ Test

Heidi G, Tilda H, Holly B, Jess G, Alice C, Coco L, Sienna L, Clara W, Sophie M and Issy H

C Test

Ava L, Zara S, Pippa H, Georgia R, Anabel H, Perdy G and Ella F

D+ Test, 

Anabel H, Bella B, Savannah B-J, Rebecca M, Greta L-C, Zara B, Zara R,  Flo W, Laura E, Lizzy H, Phoebe H, Felicity D, Esme T, Lucie F, Maddie H, Holly C, and Gabriel H

Silver Progression

Hattie F, Edith T, Alfie F, Freddie M, Jemima W

D Test

Woody H, Clarry G, Martha S and Holly C

Bronze Progression 

Harriet N, Orlando B-J, Silva D, Heidi S, Daisy S, Momo H. Skylar S, Scarlet N, Mimi S, Sophia H, Willow M, Rosalind M, Millie K, Anita M and Poppy A

E Test

Phoebe W, Grace E, Oliver P, Molly G, George S, Georgina B, Rose W, Alice B, Heidi H, Thomas B, Ellie E, Poppy L, Florrie S, Grace W, Rupert W, Charlotte H, Edith P, Marnie D, and Oscar G