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Princess Anne launches Coaching academy for disabled people

Princess Anne standing next to a pony and young horse riders
Princess Anne standing next to a pony and young horse riders Image credit:

Princess Anne opened the Princess Royal Coaching Academy in Warwickshire last Friday, November 5, on behalf of the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA).

The charity was launched in 1969 to support disabled people with fitness, therapy and improve their development skills through horse riding and carriage driving.

Princess Anne became a patron of the RDA in 1971, fourteen years later in 1985 the royal became the organisation’s president.

To celebrate her 50 years involvement the charity has launched their new Coaching Academy, named after the Princess Royal, which will include training being offered to ‘Coach Mentors’ and allow the organisation to reach out to more people with disabilities across the country.

At a speech during Friday’s opening ceremony the royal said:  "It was that early understanding and example of standards that has made the organisation what it is.

"And for those of you who have followed in those footsteps and developed in your own ways in your own groups and in your own areas, there is a huge amount we have learned.

"I hope you will agree that the Coaching Academy is an appropriate use of that experience – and will make all of that experience go a little bit further, to encourage more people to take their places in the RDA, and to make that change for each of those individuals that they come across."

Ed Bracher, CEO of the RDA, said: "We are enormously excited to launch our new Coaching Academy. Our coaches’ lie at the heart of the RDA's work and through the Academy, we aim to nurture talent, innovation and excellence.

“This is a core part of our plan to dramatically increase the number of disabled people we can support by our 60th anniversary in 2029.

"We are delighted that The Princess Royal has agreed to lend her name to the Academy, fifty years after she first became involved with RDA."

The Riding for the Disabled Association is supported by 18,000 amazing volunteers and qualified coaches at nearly 500 RDA centres all over the UK.