Raven Rocky and Arnie

In Memory of WBro John Cooper

Roses Lodge No. 5140, holds its Old England Night in December and has for many years invited Non-Masons to it. All who attend the Old England Nights had enjoyed the company of WBro John Cooper for many years. John tragically died with his wife Susan, whilst on Holiday in Egypt last year. The Non-Masons who attended in December 2018 decided to set up a collection to be given to a charity that WBro Cooper was a keen supporter of, which of course was Riding for the Disabled. The Lodge agreed to match the amount they raised and so, WBro Paul Roberts, Almoner of Roses Lodge No. 5140, presented a cheque for £850 to Catherine Dower, who leads the group.

Catherine is delighted with the Cheque for £850.

Said Catherine, “Thanks so much for your donation it costs us around £5000 a year to keep the charity going.  None of us are paid, we purely volunteer. I let the RDA horses stay in my stables at Crown Point with no charge for the stabling or for me looking after them, mucking out etc….  Money is raised by organising fundraisers each year and very kind donations like yours.
The money will be spent looking after the horses: horse feed, vet bills, hay and black smiths bills.
Any specialist equipment that the riders need: special reins, back supports, belts, stirrups with fitted fronts, pads and riding hats.
Equipment for games during the lessons: letters for around the arena, buckets, balls, bean bags, hoops, poles and blocks”.
Catherine explained…”We are a small local charity based at Crown Point in Burnley, Lancashire, that provides horse riding sessions for disabled children and young adults.  We currently have 16 riders from the local area.
We have three horses/ponies that are owned by the charity and they are called Raven, Rocky and Arnie. We were originally founded in 1975 by a small group of volunteers which included Lady Mary Townley, MBE.

Enjoying the ride!

I started as a volunteer in 1997, I was immediately hooked, my role and involvement in the group grew until I took over running the group in 2008.
All our riders have different and varied disabilities, both physical and mental, from mild learning issues to severe paralysis. The sessions allow the riders to develop skills, confidence, encourage independence, and of course provide an element of fun and socialisation. Many of our riders come to us after being referred by a physiotherapist to build muscle strength and flexibility.  Week upon week it is nice to see our riders develop, no matter how big or small their progress may be.  We have children who when they initially come don’t have the ability or the strength the sit up unaided but, have then gone on to ride independently in an arena.  The progress is sometimes amazing and well beyond our and their parents expectations”.
John Wilkinson