Who knew we would be going through a pandemic which has impacted in all of us in so many ways? Even the horses have been affected as the advice from the beginning of lockdown was to err on the side of caution if deciding to ride. The debates on whether to ride on online forums were often deeply fractious, heated and emotional. People were worried about the emerging spring grass and keeping their horses fit, whilst others thought it unthinkable to ride and risk a fall which could take the fantastic NHS away from someone who may be fighting for their life through contraction of covid.
Despite the major curve ball, known as the pandemic, which was thrown at us, we have been amazed at how so many of our clients have expressed gratitude for having a horse in their life and talked about the deep beneficial effects it has had their well being.
During the early stages of lockdown we had decisions to make to try and eliminate as many risks as we could. A rota was drawn up to ensure that people came up at staggered times to avoid too many people coming at the same times. Care plans were collected in case of emergencies with people utilising a buddy system should anything arise. Sanitisers, disposable bags for latex gloves were just some of the measures put in place.
Once people began to get to grips with the ropes, everyone pulled together and what a fantastic team effort it was. We all played a part in making this system work and a huge cheer to everyone at our yard who did an amazing job to protect each other and demonstrate such support, kindness and gratitude….. and for the really yummy and fattening homemade fudge which was often left at the noticeboard and dodgy jokes on the WhatsApp group #go team Blackfaulds.
Kenneth spent hours in the tractor – rolling the fields, topping and digging out ragwort and fixing our garden path ! And it is just fabulous to hear laughter and people enjoying getting into the saddle and using the arena or hacking, on the fabulous network of paths. What a fab team we have here at Blackfaulds Farm Livery.