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Huntingdon Care Home Resident Celebrates Milestone Birthday on Horseback

The Chase care home in the Connaught Care Collection, arranged a memorable day of horse riding for resident Diana Whelan at Northbrook Equestrian Centre in St Neots – where she used to volunteer.

Diana, who recently celebrated her 78th birthday at the home, has a lifelong passion for horses which began when she received her first pony as a child. Over the years she became an integral part of the Western Riding community; competing in British style riding, dressage events, and offering ‘horse therapy’ for people with disabilities.

Diana’s daughter Elizabeth, who joined in the fun at Northbrook, shares her delight at seeing her mother ride again:

“My mother lights up whenever you talk about horses, and seeing her interact with them during activities arranged by The Chase has been wonderful. When we set the goal of getting Mum back on a horse I wasn’t sure it would be possible, but it was and the sense of pride and achievement in that moment is something truly special”

This kind of therapeutic riding can play a significant role in boosting mental and physical health. For many years Diana volunteered at the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) to offer one-to-one lessons for local people living with disabilities.

This kind of equine-assisted therapy (EAP) can be a valuable therapeutic strategy for improving well-being and physical confidence.

Sadly, in recent years Diana has been unable to ride, and looking after her own horses has become difficult. However, with support from The Chase and Northbrook, she was able to relive some of her cherished memories as a rider.

Nicola Orwin, General Manager at The Chase, says activities like this underscore the home’s commitment to offering a unique experience for every residents:

“At The Chase, we recognize that true care is never one-size-fits-all. We strive to create meaningful memories for every resident, based on their personal histories and passions. I am therefore delighted the team could arrange such a perfect birthday for Di, and we look forward to creating many more new memories for our residents”


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