History of the Border Group
The Border Group RDA started in 1968. Riding took
place at four different centres, mostly out of
doors, and helpers fetched and returned the
children, driving many miles to do so.
It soon became apparent that indoor riding schools
were a must for the winter and the group was lucky
enough to be lent two privately owned covered
schools at Menslaws and Dryden. Some of the ponies
concerned were lent for the riding sessions, some
bought and some presented by the Red Cross.
time went on and costs increased, transport for the
Border Group became difficult with the Riders being
so far apart, so in 1976 it was decided to divide
into two groups.
The Border group remaining at Menslaws and serving
Hawick, Jedburgh and Kelso areas, while the new
group named the Ettrickbridge and Dryden group would
cover Galashiels and Selkirk areas.
because the owners of Menslaws were retiring and
moving house, we had to look for temporary
accommodation. This we found on Bowhill Estate where
we stayed until we found somewhere more permanent.
Our more permanent site was to be on Monteviot
Estate near Ancrum and by 1996, after lots of hard
work fundraising, donations from many friends of the
Border Group and help from the Lottery Sports
Council we had raised over £100,000 and were able to
build a brand new indoor arena.
groupís volunteers are dedicated to ensuring our
participants receive a high standard of
tuition but at the same time interact with others
and have fun. The group is part of the curriculum in
schools in the community. Organisers and instructors
from the group meet with teachers and therapists to
discuss which children would benefit from learning
Adults come individually and from colleges to ride.
Some people come to ride as a therapy helping
balance and strengthening weak muscles. Others come
to learn Dressage and compete at group, regional or
The Border group started with four children and borrowed horses, it now caters for some
50 adults and children
and owns eight ponies.