Riders are urged to be on their guards and look out for cut-price tack after around £15,000 of equipment has been stolen from a riding centre on the Hampshire/Surrey border.

The owner, Caroline Ewen said the burglary was “completely and utterly devastating”.

40 saddles, nearly 50 bridles and a £11,000 John Deere gator were stolen from Hewshott Farm Stables in the early hours of 2 April.

Thieves broke into locked shipping containers where the tack was kept, and broke through MOD locked gates on adjacent land to get away using the stolen gator.

The thieves emptied 2 tack containers only leaving behind a few synthetic saddles.

A number of competition saddles were taken, among them a Equipe Emporio worth £2,000, an Albion dressage saddle valued at £1,800 and a number of Kent & Masters event saddles worth over £1,000 each.

“The police attended very quickly after being notified of the theft, but have very little to go on and we have little hope of recovering the stolen items,” added Mrs Ewan. “Ironically a large proportion of the tack was marked at a crime prevention day (run by Hampshire Horsewatch) we held at the yard only a few days previously.”

The yard has 50 horses, and is 4 minutes drive from Liphook in Hampshire. The local RDA use the school regularly.

Mrs Ewen, who has owned the yard for 16 years, said that information about burglaries needs to be shared.

“Somewhere somebody is buying a saddle that cost £1,500 for virtually nothing. They should realise this might be stolen and report it,” she said.

Last month H&H reported on the rise in tack thefts across the country. Figures suggest that tack theft is at an all time high and riders are urged to be on their guard.