benefits of being a volunteer

Volunteering is not all just about giving.  As well as being very appreciated for the time you give, you will also benefit in a number of ways, including the following: 

Be part of a team 
Enjoy the outdoors and keep fit 
Making new friends  
Learn new skills 
Boost your CV 
Satisfaction that you are making a difference

For more information contact Carol Porter carol@happylandings-rda.co.uk 01403 741355

Bicycle riders

Our carriages are adapted to take both ambulant and wheelchair drivers and we need people able to ride bicycles to go out with the carriages.  (Dependent on the driver that can be either two or three with each turnout).
You do not need to cycle far each time, as each drive is only approx. 20 – 30 mins.   We do have some electric bikes that prove very popular!


We need people who can help the drivers get into the carriage either in their wheelchairs up the carriages ramps, or with help up steps to safely get into a position to drive.



All the bikes need checking on a regular basis and it helps to have someone on hand to pump up tyres, adjust seats etc.  Also check that the batteries for the electric bikes are fully charged.


Tea/coffee makers

We like to make our Wednesday mornings a social occasion as well, so we have the facilities to make hot drinks.  Home made scones and cakes are always welcome for which we make a small charge. Some drivers, who are not perhaps driving that week, come along anyway as a social outing. 

volunteers poem

Many years ago, a group was begun
For disabled people a morning of fun.
Ann Sheldrake it was, with Queenie her mare,
From her home, “Happy Landings,”
Ann had this idea.

Over the years we’ve moved home once or twice
From Ifold to Dounhurst, which was terribly nice.
A few years at Dunsfold, then moved once again –
Tismans, with Steffie is our new domain.

The Group is still thriving, the best thing of course, is
The drivers and helpers and the wonderful horses –
Of whom we have three of varying sizes
And this is the list and how it comprises:-

Lovely Flash competes in Attelage shows
But on  Wednesdays to Happy Landings she goes.
Rocky’s our strong man, bred for this task
And his stablemate Misty is all one could ask.

It’s  2020  – and Arthur’s retired.
This lovely boy was so admired.
In World Paras with Carol, three silvers he won
In Austria, Germany as well as Hopeton.

Indoors, marathons, singles and pairs,
This lad’s done it all, over the years.
Now twenty-nine, he deserves a rest
Twenty years RDA ….always giving his best.

We’ll miss you, old boy, it won’t be the same
But onwards and upwards, the name of the game.
For our drivers the horses bring smiles and laughter.
At the end of the day, isn’t that what we’re after.

But allow just a moment to fondly recall
Our four – legged friends who gave their all
No longer here ,but in pastures new…..
‘Horsey Heaven’ I like to think, – don’t you?

Wednesday mornings are usually busy by ten,
Getting out carriages, bikes and then,
If we’re lucky there’s time for a chat and a scone
Made by Eileen – the kettle’s always on!

When our drivers arrive we start putting-to;
“Who’s driving who?      Is it me or you?”
Some days are for training and some are the shows –
There’s our Fun Day or course, where anything goes!

But mostly we just go out for a hack
Down the lane, round the corner, there and back.
The horses stand quiet, we change drivers and reins,
Then, ready, with escort, we go out again.

When the drivers have gone at the end of the day –
The horses are watered, the stuff put away …
“See you next week” as we drive down the lane
For, next week……………. WE DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN I!