'Much loved' pony, Gingerbread, awarded for 25 years of service to the Riding for the Disabled Association

PUBLISHED: 15:12 16 February 2016 | UPDATED: 15:12 16 February 2016

Riding for Disabled Association presentation to long serving 30-year-old pony who has served the RDA for 25 years. Left: Iris Copsey, Izzie Simper, Committee members, Sue Orbell, Debbie Bedford, Viv Seymour and Enid Bedford, Frankie Stevinson. Picture : Steve Williams.

Riding for Disabled Association presentation to long serving 30-year-old pony who has served the RDA for 25 years. Left: Iris Copsey, Izzie Simper, Committee members, Sue Orbell, Debbie Bedford, Viv Seymour and Enid Bedford, Frankie Stevinson. Picture : Steve Williams.

Archant

A much loved pony that has been with the Riding for the Disabled Association for 25 years was presented with a long service award today.

Riding for Disabled Association presentation to long serving 30-year-old pony who has served the RDA for 25 years. Left: Iris Copsey and Izzie Simper age 7. Picture : Steve Williams.Riding for Disabled Association presentation to long serving 30-year-old pony who has served the RDA for 25 years. Left: Iris Copsey and Izzie Simper age 7. Picture : Steve Williams.

Gingerbread, 31, has provided therapy and enjoyment to disabled people of all ages ever since she was six.

The Shetland/Dartmoor ginger-haired pony is a driver for disabled groups who visit from across Soham, Ely and Royston.

Drivers Iris Copsey and Debbie Bedford take turns in taking Gingerbread safely up and down the long drive at Paradise Livery Stables, Witchford Road, Ely.

Riding for Disabled Association presentation to long serving 30-year-old pony who has served the RDA for 25 years Picture : Steve Williams.Riding for Disabled Association presentation to long serving 30-year-old pony who has served the RDA for 25 years Picture : Steve Williams.

“Gingerbread knows the routine so well; where to turn, when to stop and to keep a steady pace, with an occasional trot now and then,” said Iris.

“She is very willing and patient and enjoys her treats and a snack when all her work is done.

“Usually about eight to 10 people turn up to take part together with their carers who have all had special training in how to load and unload the riders.

Riding for Disabled Association presentation to long serving 30-year-old pony who has served the RDA for 25 years. Izzie Simper with Gingerbread.  Picture : Steve Williams.Riding for Disabled Association presentation to long serving 30-year-old pony who has served the RDA for 25 years. Izzie Simper with Gingerbread. Picture : Steve Williams.

“At Christmas Gingerbread looked super with bells and tinsel on her harness and even enjoyed a stolen mince pie off the plate at our celebration.

“She has given so much to all of us, even though her age has slowed her down, her spirit is still willing and she is much loved by all.”

Volunteer helpers Frankie Stevinson and Sue Orbel also help with leading and loading.

The Riding for Disabled Association is supported solely by donations and fundraising. Volunteers are always welcome.

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