Clarissa's brilliant 9 years of North Midlands Regional Chairman!!(December 04, 2018)
Thank you Clarissa for your contribution of Regional Chairman over brilliant 9 years!!
Clarissa has tell us about her exceptional volunteering time as North Midlands Regional Chairman over past nine years
"When we came to live in Northamptonshire in 1994, I had already been with RDA in London for seventeen years, firstly at Knightsbridge Barracks, then the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace, then somewhat ironically, Wormwood Scrubs. A new riding stable had been set up there by TV's ‘Challenge Anneka’. They built it in a day, I think, and it’s been there ever since.
"Through Mary Hodges, the then Northamptonshire County Chairman, I met Jeannie Eastwood and joined the Hillcrest group. Volunteering led on to being an instructor. Jeannie became the Northamptonshire County Chairman and then through her illness I became the County Chairman. I then met Sandie Betts the Regional Chairman at the time whilst I was doing that job, with Lesley Davies as my co-Chairman.
"Time flies when you have fun and I have had a lot of fun along my RDA route. So many lovely volunteers, riders, ponies and horses have crossed my path. The dedication and hard work by everyone always makes me feel very happy that I am part of such a team. I love hearing all the stories, problems, achievements, failures, exciting, sad, happy, moments that the groups want to tell me about and those things they don’t want to tell me about, but somehow I find out anyway!
"I was slow at being a Regional Chairman to start with as I was not entirely sure what was expected of me. Luckily Lesley seemed to do the lion’s share of the work. I was still Nursing in London which did not help. Anyway, time went on and Lesley moved on to run her own group the Belvoir Vale with great success and to be a County Coach. Thank goodness she did that, because her experience is fabulous for all of us in the North Midlands.
"The past nine years have given me such a wealth of cherished memories. Trying to create a positive relationship between National Office and the individual groups has admittedly been challenging from time to time. However, I would like to take this opportunity to say how terrific all the groups are in the North Midlands. The groups are all different so it’s impossible to compare them. All the volunteers work hard with their riders, and some are more successful than others, but everyone is aiming for the same goal. Happy safe riding for all. My best wishes and thanks to you all.
"Over the past few years I have felt more comfortable with the role and I am now quite happy to let Maria Holdaway have a turn. I wish her all good fortune in her new role as Regional Chairman for the North Midlands."