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We kicked off Christmas this year with a Sunday morning visit to the Birr Equestrian Centre. They were doing a Christmas special. My 3 grand children, novices to horse/pony riding were so excited. From the moment of registration, we could not have asked for a better experience. Children chose their ponies, thinking deeply about which pony they would like while a very patient young man, let them think, did not hurry them up and was so kind. Ours were then kitted out with hats and mounted on very quiet ponies. They were then led, one by one, around the arena, even walking over jumps. The staff were all so helpful, caring and yet very safety conscious. Maebh, who was in charge, has an ability to be attentive while all the time keeping an eye on everyone in a calm, confident and professional manner. Our group were besides themselves with excitement. We were able to view their progress from upstairs where there was a kettle to make cups of tea and a huge tin of Quality Street sweets and red lemonade.The children could not believe their luck. Then they were called down to the arena and as their names were called out, each child was presented with a beautiful rosette. Older, experienced children encouraged and helped younger children. Later Santa Claus arrived ....on a horse. Such excitement. I would encourage anyone with children to make this a stop, make the detour, come to Birr. On top of all that, the price was 10 euro a head. The best value we have had for years.
Date of experience: December 2013
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