The Quest group applied several times for a visit from Her Royal Highness, but it was quite a surprise when we received confirmation that our application had been successful.

The visit was to be a celebration of Quest’s Ruby anniversary, but also of the group’s current achievements and of a golden future ahead.

The Quest group has been a ‘pioneer’ for RDA’s Accessibility Mark Scheme. We were delighted when Laris Farm Stables was the first of only one other riding stables in Surrey to receive this award.

An outcome of this has been the development of a strong working relationship with both management and staff at Laris Farm.

The Princess took a particular interest in the Accessibility Mark, the opportunities and greater choice it offers to disabled people.

Young people who have “graduated” from riding with Quest and who now ride with Laris Farm, as part of the Accessibility Mark project, were included in this special day and displayed some activities for HRH.

The Princess also presented rosettes to every child present, whether or not they took part in any of the displays. HRH was especially interested in the newly developed woodland walk at Laris Farm and walked some of it with a group of riders who demonstrated some of the sensory and physical activities.

This was a splendid, memorable day for the Quest group which we were delighted to share with our riders, volunteers, visitors from other groups and honoured guests. Only ten more years to the group’s fiftieth anniversary, unless, of course, we can be successful in inviting the Princess Royal to visit Quest before then!

Highlights of the day were when Her Royal Highness presented long service awards to Jane Hadden-Wight and Ruth Herd from Quest and visitors from other groups, whom we were delighted to welcome.

All photos by kind permission of Zecora Photography