We celebrated 30 years of service to the community in 2019, and are celebrating the 10th anniversary of our pioneering partnership with the NHS in 2020. We’ve come a long way since we started back in 1989. Take a look at our journey.
1989 – Our journey begins with a few riders and borrowed ponies based at Appin Riding School, Drem. Gill and Garth Morrison spend months searching for a place to call our own.
1989 – Gill and Garth decide on West Fenton. So, with a handful of friends, 4 borrowed ponies and 8 riders we move in. The Muirfield Group is officially born!
1990 – At first, there is just a Friday morning session in a muddy field. As word spreads we add a Tuesday morning.
1995 – After much fundraising effort from our fantastic volunteers we raise enough to build our Outdoor School. But sessions often have to be cancelled due to bad weather.
1996 – Kishmul arrived, and he’s still here. He is our longest serving pony. We’ve had many pony friends over the years.
2000 – John Anderson of John Anderson Butchers hears of our work and asks how he can help. Gill tells him we needed a roof over our heads. John adopts us as his Millennium Project and helps us raise £10,000.
– Susan Law takes over as Chairperson.
2002 – Thanks to more major fundraising plus SportScotland and Lottery funding we manage to increase our total raised to almost £500,000 and building work begins on our Indoor Arena.
2003 – Finally, we get a roof over our heads as the Indoor Arena is officially opened by HRH The Princess Royal.
2009 – MRT Group physiotherapist Heather Falconer, piloted a successful service between NHS Lothian and MRT. This pioneering partnership becomes the Therapeutic Riding Service, part of NHS Lothian’s Children’s Physiotherapy Service.
2010 – After further mammoth fundraising, the new Extension is completed. It includes an improved Viewing Gallery for riders, parents and carers, with a coffee machine to enjoy whilst watching the session; a Physiotherapy Room for our therapists to carry out assessments of new Riders and plan their Therapy; a meeting room used for training, fundraising and social events; and a secure Reception Area. The Extension was officially opened by Mary King MBE.
2010 – HRH The Princess Royal presented Long Service Awards to Gill Morrison, Susan Law, Shirley Duff, Pamela Roberston-Durham and our pony Kishmul.
2013 – The Association of Chartered Practitioners in Therapeutic Riding hold their European Conference here, and plan to come back!
2014 – Centred Riding workshops are held here and the organisers are also keen to return.
2014 – Every 1 to 2 years we hold Horse Behavioural clinics for our ponies, sharers and pony handlers to ensure we know how to get the best from our ponies.
2015 – We celebrate our 25th Anniversary!
2017 – We now have over 220 volunteers and run 7 weekly riding sessions allowing 120 riders to benefit from Riding Therapy. We’ve come a long way.
2019 – We celebrated our 30th Anniversary!
2020 – We are celebrating the 10th anniversary of our Therapeutic Riding Service partnership with NHS Lothian’s Children’s Physiotherapy Service.