Trevor Mills has a lot to be proud of. As well as having just celebrated his 80th birthday he is now celebrating an amazing 25 years of volunteering at the Riding for the Disabled Centre, Gaddesden Place. With the help of volunteers this centre gives over 100 children and adults with special needs and disabilities the opportunity to ride and have fun.
Trevor took redundancy and early retirement at the age of 55. With time on his hands he decided to try volunteering. He visited the Volunteer Centre, which at that time was in the Old Town, and at their suggestion started with Meals on Wheels which he did until Herts County Council took over.
It was then, as a result of a further visit to the Volunteer Centre, that he met Trina Hall who ran the riding school and Riding for the Disabled (RDA). After talking to Trina, he decided to volunteer for RDA. Although he had no knowledge of horses or disabilities he felt that this would be a challenge that he would enjoy.
He started with just one session a week but this quickly became two. His various roles at the centre have included stewarding at competitions, acting as a groom and carriage driving. It was the carriage driving that really caught his interest and, after Trina had taught him the basics of driving, Trevor became so hooked that he even bought his own pony and carriage!
He was persuaded to join the Committee and has held the roles of both Treasurer and Chairman. Whilst there he has seen Gaddesden Place change from a branch of the national RDA to a separate charity and more recently to a limited company.
Although he is now 80 Trevor is still helping 3 or 4 times a week and is obviously much appreciated. The Chairman, Cathy Bolshaw said “We have had many wonderful volunteers who have come to us via the Volunteer Centre over the years and Trevor is a shining example…and the longest serving! I look forward to welcoming many more in the future”
If you would like to follow in Trevor’s footsteps and become a volunteer at RDA you can either come and talk to us or visit their website www.gaddesdenplacerda.org.uk