Enjoy forest riding in England

  • The National Forest Company has produced a guidebook on riding in England’s National Forest, which includes a new cross-country course designed by Ian Stark

    The National Forest Company (NFC) has put together a guidebook offering information on off-road riding and equestrian facilities throughout the National Forest’s 200 square miles.

    Olympic silver-medallist Ian Stark has designed the new cross-country course at Eland Lodge Farm, one of eight new sites to be included in this the second guide.

    “The National Forest is a fantastic setting in which to ride”, said Ian. “It is easily accessible which is a huge advantage, and caters for all levels of rider – you can enjoy a fun day out or benefit from intensive schooling for horse and rider.”

    There are 35 locations featured in this guide which covers Leicestershire, Derbyshire and Staffordshire. Each entry includes a general description, along with available routes, parking information and details of other facilities and permit requirements.

    The guide also gives descriptions on how each site links in with the surrounding bridleway network and there are an increasing number of sites suitable for carriage driving

    Audrey Brown, NFC’s land use officer, who compiled the guide, said: “We are conscious that there is a great demand for off-road riding and we are working with landowners to meet that need.”

    “The NFC has created some 45 km of new riding routes, through this unique tender scheme and through working in partnership with other organisations. We are keen to put in place a network of longer routes for safe riding”.

    For a free copy of the guidebook contact the NFC (tel: 01283 551211) or click here to visit their website.

    About the National Forest

    The National Forest covers an area of 200 square miles in the counties of Leicestershire, Derbyshire and Staffordshire.

    Its objective is to increase woodland cover within its boundaries from an initial six per cent to about 30 per cent

    The NFC was given the job of overseeing the creation of the Forest in 1995 and has been steadily turning what was once one of the least wooded areas of England into a multi-purpose, sustainable forest.

    Almost five million trees have been planted and the National Forest provides environmental and economic benefits, including landscape enhancement, creation of new wildlife habitats and major new access and leisure opportunities.

    The National Forest Company works in partnership with landowners, local authorities and private business and has strong support from Government, politicians and the public.

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