14 Mar 2008

Disabled riders in Clwyd will have a better chance of competing in national competitions, according to Tessa Chew the Centre Manager at Clwyd Special Riding Centre, following a considerable cash injection from the Sports Council for Wales.

Funding Pic

The £9,180 awarded to the Centre by the Sports Council will contribute towards one-to-one weekly coaching sessions for 12 riders aged between 11-60 years old, and cover the cost of competing in national competitions such as the National Paralympic Qualifiers at the end of this month.

Tessa Chew explains, "The project has only just started but already we’re seeing great progress. We want to develop these riders and give them the chance to achieve more through one-to-one specialist training. Four of the riders will be competing in the National Paralympic Qualifiers in about two weeks time and the remainder will compete in the Disabled Qualifiers in June."

The youngest rider to take part in the qualifiers will be 11-year-old Georgia Wilson from Abergele who beat members of Team GB to win a Grade III Paralympic dressage qualifier last month.

The weekly riding sessions are carried out during term time, will run over the next 32 weeks and involves around four local trainers.

Clwyd Special Riding Centre provides people of all ages with the opportunity to ride, equestrian vault or carriage drive at the level of their ability. The Centre is the only one of its kind in the UK offering residential riding holidays to people with special needs from the UK and overseas.

Any organisation looking to get more people, more active, more often – either through new activities or by raising current standards are eligible to apply for SCW funding.

Grants from £1,001 are available for the purchase of new or additional sports equipment, coach education, initial venue hire or instructor fees, building works to create new facilities of for the purchase of land – or the rights of land – to develop activity areas.

Chief of the Sports Council for Wales, Philip Carling said:

"With the funding and support from the Welsh Assembly Government and the National Lottery, the Sports Council for Wales is helping to transform the sporting landscape in Wales. The considerable investment into community sport, facilities, equipment and coaches has impacted on communities throughout the principality and is helping to raise participation rates across the board.

"We want to hear of bright ideas and projects that will help us continue our mission to get more people in Wales more active, more often."

For further information from the Sports Council for Wales please contact Lynette Evans on /

Or for information on Clwyd Riding School, please contact Tessa Chew on

· The Sports Council for Wales is the national organisation responsible for developing both sport and physical recreation. It is the main adviser on sporting matters to the Welsh Assembly Government and is responsible for distributing funds from the National Lottery to sport and recreation in Wales.