Pepper the Naughty Pony (and friends)
Prompted by yet another adjustment of the electric fence following an attempted escape, it's time to introduce our equines. Pepper is the ringleader of any trouble that's going on and is a small, dark grey Shetland pony. She is about 3 years old and, to keep her out of trouble, she is going to be learning how to walk on long lines and maybe even pull some simple farm maintenance tools, as Shetlands would have done in the past on crofts on their home islands. Salt is the lighter grey and she is Pepper's mum. Salt is a little nervous to handle but she knows all her basics so she will be left to a quieter life, just teaching students how to handle and groom the ponies. Salt and Pepper were abandoned at a stables in Cornwall when Pepper was only a baby, and they eventually found their way to Hunters Hill via another care farm.
Lottie is the big horse, she is a 21 year old thoroughbred who belongs to Miss Simpkin. She has excellent manners (much better than Pepper's...) and is very calm with the students despite her intimidating size. She is no longer ridden and will live out her days at school, keeping Salt company while Pepper is out and about working or representing the school! Lottie is also used in lessons as she is very good to lead and groom.
We will be offering Equine Therapy later in the year to our students on a more formal basis and this will be available to external users as well. Jaz, who looks after the Stables building facilities, is an accomplished horsewoman and competitor qualified in Equine and is keen to use her skills for the benefit of young people.