Duke Of Edinburgh – Spring 2018
Our new group of Duke of Edinburgh students started with us in the middle of January. We have 10 students this time around, some doing their Bronze and others doing their Silver award. One of the Silver students completed the Bronze with us and enjoyed it so much, they’ve returned to gain their Silver. Each student will spend 2 hours with us for 12 weeks.
During week one, we introduced them to the joys of poo picking which they all undertook with great enthusiasm. They then met with the shetlands and spent time grooming them, much to both their and the shetlands enjoyment. The bonding process between all the students has begun.
Unfortunately for them, the second week was a wet one, but they didn’t seem to mind too much and got stuck in. This weeks task was the planting of the whips down the drive to where the new gate is going to be. They then went to see some of the main herd including Fred, Tilly, Berry and Diamond all of whom lapped up the attention.
Week 3 and everyone is getting to grips with everything on site. The group got stuck in with an hours poo picking and cleared 2 large fields – no mean feat. They then helped move our herd of cobs to another field so they are on fresh grass. We then introduced them to the new Community Herd who bravely came over to the fence to say hello. What a joy to see our 4 new mares happy and excited to meet people. Finally they filled 20 hay nets ready for this evenings feed. It was a great mornings work all round.
Another productive session was had by the DofE group on week 4. As it was too wet to groom horses the group dug over and then raked a large area of flower bed to remove weeds and rubble in preparation of seeding it when the weather becomes warmer. We then moved into the barn to take up the rubber matting. All accomplished with great cheerfulness and energy and plenty of team work. Let’s hope for a dry day next Saturday.
Week 5 was a very busy Saturday. We brought the shetlands down into the barn and got them groomed. It was a very welcome opportunity to get out of the bitterly cold February wind, though at least it was dry! Once the shetlands were mud free and looking at their best they went for a walk around the sanctuary. Back in their field Duncan immediately rolled on the muddy ground, he obviously did not appreciate the pampering!
After that we tackled the cobs (Ziggy, Snoopy and Timmy) who also enjoyed being groomed. Timmy being Timmy still looked a dirty shade of grey but at least he had a lot less mud on him. Lovely time for everyone.