Penny-farthings may come from the Victorian era, but the retro bikes are being given a new lease of life thanks to a new sport — penny-farthing polo.
“It’s a poor man’s polo,” said Penny Farthing Club founder Neil Laughton. “You don’t have to have stables, you don’t have to muck out, you don’t have to brush the horses. It’s a bike and we can trailer them around. We go to a lot of venues and have a lot of fun.”
However, whereas polo ponies tend to be well mannered, agile and responsive, penny-farthings are anything but. Your ride will be difficult to mount, steer and control. The bikes have neither gears nor brakes, so player-on-player crashes and falls are common.
Membership is a little cheaper than that of a traditional polo club, costing just £25 for the year — which includes the cost of bike maintenance and repairs, insurance and your first evening’s tuition.
For more information visit www.pennyfarthingclub.com
First published in Horse & Hound magazine on 24 July 2014