The Pony Club is to appoint three external trustees as the final move in a year of changes to streamline the organisation.

Pony Club chairman Cherry Michell told H&H the changes are an “exciting and positive move forward”.

“Restructuring has freed people to focus on what they are best at, to make sure members get the best deal,” she said.

The changes occurred after the Charity Commission, in 2007, asked all charities to look at streamlining their trustee boards. The Pony Club has cut its board from 35 to six, and is now looking for three expert trustees — in child protection, health and safety, marketing, commerce and finance.

The Pony Club council will continue to oversee the organisation’s day-to-day equestrian business.

District commissioners across the UK told H&H they felt positive about the restructuring, but believed it would mainly affect headquarters.

The British Equestrian Federation (BEF) ran a similar restructure four years ago.

BEF chief executive Andrew Finding said: “It will be beneficial to them. We have found it more efficient to operate with a small group of directors who have a key interest in specific areas.”

This article was first published in Horse & Hound (5 March, ’09)