Witham Villa runs its own training scheme for those riders that wish to develop their skills further and have more involvement in the care of the horses and ponies.
To register on the scheme, riders need to be a minimum of 10 years of age, ridden with us for a minimum of 6 months and a pony club member. They should be competent riders and able to perform basic stable management tasks ie to Pony Club D test level. Once registered onto the scheme, they will be invited to a training session, when they will be given a training folder, and they will be assessed for suitability for acceptance as a junior trainee.
Once accepted they will be allocated a training day, either Saturday or Sunday, and they should then make every effort to attend on that day to obtain maximum benefit of the training available. They will become involved in all applicable aspects of Witham Villa. Further benefits include allocation of a pony for them to look after specially and also to compete at Witham Villa shows. Rachel Burlingham is an example of how much benefit can be obtained from the scheme as she has competed on various horses in Affiliated dressage, having been a trainee with us from the age of 11.
The first pony she was allocated was a little grey pony called Misty that she taught to jump, she then moved onto a palomino pony called Sunny and a black pony called Holly that she competed at local shows. She was then allocated Vikki (Witham Surprise), that she schooled from being broken in as a 4 years old, up to competing her Affiliated at Novice and Elementary Dressage as a 6 year old. She then moved on to "Chaitaine" whom she qualified for the Regional Final at Novice level affiliated dressage. Her next horse was "Quelle Jolie" whom she competed at Elementary and Medium level.
Lizzie Merritt is another junior trainee who has had amazing success through the scheme and having been with us for 10 years she left to take up a much sought after Dressage apprenticeship. she is now working within the industry. Thomas Moulding also had great success through the scheme, having been National runner up at the BHS Riding Schools competion riding Ben. He also competed on Ben in affiliated dressage at elementary level. Tom has now gone on to take up an equestrian university degree course at Brackenhurst.