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New College Equine Development is Underway

Published 23 August
Horse Management courses

Work is underway for the exciting development of a new equine facility at Craven College, which will open its doors to students and the public from September 2022.

The Equine Centre, which will house an indoor arena with seating gallery, a warm-up arena, outdoor riding arena, stable block and car parking facilities, is being constructed on land belonging to the Craven Cattle Mart Auctions, close to the Leeds-Liverpool canal and Skipton bypass (A629).

The main indoor arena will provide first-class facilities for student training and also will host a variety of events such as dressage and show jumping, which will be open to the public. The site will contain a warm-up arena, which will allow students to ride and work their horses in different conditions. Additionally, a large stable block will house the horses residing with the College, a wash box, a student practical teaching area, tack room, offices, rug store and feed room.

Lindsey Johnson, Principal and Chief Executive Officer of Craven College comments, “We are thrilled that the development is finally underway. The College has seen the recruitment of young people, in particular onto land-based courses, increase both last year and this year – and this will support our ambition to be the leading college for land-based education in the area, which is so important to our local economy.”

The new facilities are based on land that the College is leasing from the owners, Craven Cattle Mart Auctions, and replaces an existing arena in their buildings. Jeremy Eaton, General Manager at Craven Cattle Mart Auctions states “We are pleased that the project is now in progress. This development continues our longstanding collaboration with the College and the new facilities will greatly contribute to our local economy and enhance employment opportunities in our region. Housing these new facilities reinforce the rural training offer based on the Auction Mart campus, whilst contributing towards the underpinning of the livestock auction, which provides an essential service to farmers throughout Craven and the north.”

Joanna Baxter, Head of Department (Land-based) at Craven College says, “These superb facilities will allow our students to better develop their skills and knowledge, allowing them greater opportunities for a successful career in the equine sector. We are extremely keen to further develop our links with equine businesses and partners and continue to provide an excellent environment for equine education within the community.”

Planning permission was originally granted in February 2019, however revised plans were submitted but were delayed during the pandemic. These included a smaller site than originally planned and reduced operational hours to minimize disruption to any neighbouring properties.

The current stage of the development is preparing the site ready for the construction phase. This involves temporary stockpiling of site materials that will be relocated and used around the new facility to complete the approved landscaping scheme. The building will also be constructed in line with the planning approval.

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