Below you will find some of our most asked question: If you have a question that has not been covered, please get in contact.
Q: What should I do on arrival?
A: Please park your car safely facing the paddock or in the paddock itself, or in the front garden car park.
Head to reception to find your rider registration form on the desk, this must be filled in by a responsible adult, read the back and sign please.
Hats are available here, if you are confident and competent to try on and fit the hat yourself you can ask us to check the fit, if you are a beginner or novice and not sure how to fit a hat we are here to help please just ask. The hat should be snug to your head and have no movement when you nod your head. Boots are also available here though we cannot guarantee all sizes. For those who are riding out reflective fluorescent tabards are available for the small amount of roadwork for which the horses are well schooled.
Feel free to have a look around, if we are not available to meet and greet you on your arrival please don’t worry we are probably busy with other riders on rides or in lessons and will be with you shortly. Introduce yourself to one of our very friendly dogs or maybe the farm cat “Shakira”.
We will do our best to get you mounted as soon as we can but remember some riders may need more help or reassurance than others, others may be held up by the harbour bridge opening or lost en route which can delay departure times. Whatever happens we promise you will get the full riding time you have booked so please don’t worry that your hour is being eaten up by unavoidable delays. Once you are mounted you will have the wonderful experience you have been looking forward to.
Q: If I miss or don’t want to ride can I have a refund?
A: Sadly we take pre payment or a deposit to hold a horse/pony for you to ride and if you don’t go we have lost out on that booking, for this reason we are not able to refund, you can however give your ride to another member of your family/group so they can enjoy the ride, providing there is a horse or pony to fit.
Q: What is your weight limit?
A: 16.5 Stone (105kg), we have medical scales on site to enable you to check.
Q: From what age do you take children?
A: Hacking from the age of 6 years or in their 6th year if they are confident and accompanied by a parent also mounted, lessons from the age of 4 or in their 4th year, again if they are confident and pony rides from the age of 2.5 years at the parents discretion.
Q: Do you have hard hats and boots?
A: Hats are available in all sizes. We have a selection of boots which you are welcome to try. If you would like a hat liner these are available for a fee there is also a hat deodoriser available, please just ask.
Q: Do you offer pony rides?
A: Yes, for all ages from the age of two. We offer a short 10 minute ride around the farm yard, front lawn, driveway and manege to introduce the new rider to horses or ponies, this will give an idea of how different people take to riding for the first time, a shorter ride of 5 mins is available for the tiniest of tots and their siblings and friends, the cost is £5. 3 Tier Rosettes with long ribbons can be bought for £3
Q: What are your current prices?
A: You can check our current prices by clicking on the appropriate page.
Q: Do you take complete beginners?
A: Yes, we cater or all ages and abilities and have horses and ponies suitable for everyone. Beginners are put onto a leading rein from another horse, we can then help you with your riding and you in turn can enjoy the scenery while feeling safe. Gentle instruction and confidence will be given en route by our experienced ride leaders, they will also give you a local guided tour as you go.
Q: Will beginners be on leading reins?
A: Yes, you will be led from another horse by one of our experienced members of staff who will offer support and help on the way around.
Q: Where do you go?
A: We have access to number of scenic bridleways, coastal paths, park land some roadwork/lanes and most spectacular open downland, this all depends on your ability,the weather and the duration time of your ride.
Q: Do you offer beach rides?
A: Yes, we are located near to Colwell bay. Here on the island we are tide and time dependent. Deep paddling is a speciality. Please contact us to check availability and tide tables.
Q: Where are you located?
A: We are located half way between Yarmouth and Freshwater village on the A3054 road to Alum Bay and the Needles. The coastal breezer open top bus and the no 7 both go past Hill farm stables every 30 minutes in BST. Less often in the winter. Go to Finding us page for our address and map to locate us.
Q: Do we have to pay in advance?
A: For an advanced booking we do require a deposit or full payment depending on the time of year. Please check our tariff page for more details. Payments can be made by Bacs transfer. We do take card payments on site only but we are limited each month on the amounts taken so please ask when you book. Our bank details for transfers are on the 2019 tariff page.
What should I wear?
A: Long trousers are a must to help prevent chaffing on the inside of your calf, long sleeves will protect your arms from brambles or scratches, footwear with a small heel to prevent your foot from slipping through your stirrup. Gentlemen beginner/novice riders will find tightie whities far more comfortable than boxer shorts so my husband tells me.
All jewellery should please be removed to avoid loss or breakage or injury.
For safety reasons – All cameras, back packs, extra clothing should remain at the Farm to free up both hands and allow you to concentrate. Please do not use mobiles whilst you are mounted. We offer photo sessions on your return and you are welcome to photograph each other when mounting if you are not yet mounted.
We look forward to meeting you and making your ride as enjoyable as possible, here at Hill Farm Riding Stables, Freshwater, Isle of Wight.