In its 60th year the Association of British Riding Schools (ABRS) has been awarded charitable status.

The change will financially benefit the organisation as it will allow greater access to funding and Gift Aid to be applied on donations.

The organisation hopes that the change will enable it to offer greater benefits to its membership.

ABRS chairman, Julian Marczak, said: “In our 60th year what better way for the ABRS to celebrate than acquiring charitable status.

“Following a detailed consultation process, we decided that becoming a charity would bring about a number of clear advantages to the Association. We welcome the change with great enthusiasm.

“There has been much more to celebrate in the ABRS 60th anniversary including gaining access to the Register of Training Organisations, taking on the first ABRS Apprentices, continued success with the UKCC, a revival underway with the Association’s own qualifications and tests, new IT systems, better communications with members and more efficient ways of integrating with Scottish members.”

The ABRS is following in the footsteps of several other equestrian bodies that have been awarded charitable status this year.

British Dressage was granted the status earlier this year and British Eventing announced the creation of a charitable foundation in July.