The British Horse Society (BHS) has helped two of its first applicants successfully complete their Instructors Development Scholarship.
Jessica Thomas and Sophie-Bella Harrington, who completed their training at Aberconwy and Ryders Farm, equestrian centres respectively, are two of only nine women across the UK to receive the brand new scholarship.
Jessica now works for the Aberconwy Equestrian Centre as a BHS Assistant Instructor as a result of completing the scholarship, while Sophie-Bella works as a riding instructor at Ryders Farm.
Although steps have been taken to make the equestrian industry more accessible, the financial costs can be a stumbling block for many. The BHS are attempting to remove these barriers by allocating £250,000 to the programme.
The BHS supported the costs of Jessica and Sophie-Bella’s training, examinations and their first year as an Accredited Professional coach.
Jessica said: “The scholarship helped me in achieving my personal ambitions. It gave me the opportunity to have more training both at the centre and at other riding centres.”
Sophie-Bella said: “The BHS Instructors Development Scholarship provided me with the financial backing I needed to reach the next level of qualification. I am now better equipped to pass on my knowledge and experience to other ambitious riders. Over the years I have realised the value of having a qualified professional to teach me.”
BHS Director of Participation, Sarah Phillips, said: “Education is a huge part of the work The British Horse Society does. Jessica and Sophie-Bella are both fantastic examples of how the new Instructors Development Scholarship provides people with the training they need to become qualified instructors.
"We want to continue helping people become qualified instructors through the BHS. Learning to ride properly is vital for the welfare of the horse while making sure the rider is safe and having fun."
Anyone who would like to benefit from this opportunity should visit the BHS website for more information.