22 June 2018
Wellingborough fire fighters meeting riders at the Castle Ashby sponsored ride

​A sponsored ride around a historic private estate has raised more than £1,000 to help firefighters train to rescue large animals.

Organised by Northamptonshire Police’s Volunteers on Horseback (VoH) scheme and Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS), the event saw 39 riders saddle up to explore Castle Ashby estate on June 6.

The ride raised £1078.34, which will be put towards training equipment for the NFRS large animal rescue unit, based at Wellingborough fire station. Blue and White Watch firefighters from the station attended the event, helping with marshalling and first aid duties as well as meeting riders and their mounts.

Fun for a great cause

VoH project officer Jean Mears said: “We’re very grateful to the Castle Ashby estate for allowing us to hold the ride. It was a real success with lots of happy riders and horses enjoying the beautiful surroundings and weather.

“White Watch brought the animal rescue unit’s Unimog to host a display, and made all the riders and visitors very welcome. Mick Titcombe and his Blue Watch colleagues did a fantastic job at the road crossings and many riders commented on how pleasant and helpful they were.

“Thank you to everyone who helped organise this event and came along to support the invaluable work of the animal rescue unit.”

Watch Manager Mick Titcombe, of Blue Watch, Wellingborough fire station, added: “I would like to say a big thank you to Jean and all her team and colleagues for organising a great day, and for the important service that the Volunteers on Horseback provide.”

Follow the Volunteers on Horseback on Twitter at @NorPolVol.