Jeremy Vine

He is currently the host of the BBC Radio 2 programme 'Jeremy Vine', which presents news, views, interviews with live guests and popular music. He also presents the BBC TV show, Eggheads. Here he describes his connection with the charity.

"I first met Rachel Medill (founder of Ride High) at Durham University in 1983. No one had a mobile phone. If you wanted to be on Twitter you bought a bird feeder. So Rachel and I and our fellow students were forced to get to know each other in old-fashioned ways, like sitting in bars and talking. Over time we became that very analogue thing: friends.

One day I opened the Daily Mail and saw a headline along the lines of, THE WOMAN WHO IS SHAKING UP THE CITY. Rachel was explaining her plans for M&G, one of those companies that takes your savings and returns them to you a few years later with a zero missing. I searched the article for a mention of horses: nothing. It occurred to me that the world had recognised Rachel but maybe she had not recognised herself. A city job? I couldn't believe it.

Then came Ride High. As far from the world of financial services as you can imagine. if you give them your money they turn it into love. I visited the charity's HQ for the first time in 2010 and met the children (fewer than twenty back then). Today Ride High have over 80 names on their books.

In the Milton Keynes area, an estimated 16,000 children live in poverty. Most live in environments dominated by drugs, alcohol or family breakdown. Some are self-harming; others are caring for their own parents. Every time I see Rachel, her face lights up with the latest project or life turned around. New names enter each conversation sometimes horses, but more usually the youngsters who have finally come out of themselves by learning how to care for the animals. This project is so special, so unique, so powerful, that I wonder if it's a little miracle: thirty years after Durham and all those earnest student conversations about how we would change the world, my friend actually did. She works with heart and soul to make a difference, and she has found what she is passionate about.

Of course Rachel can only do it with our help. Which is why I am so proud to be a patron of Ride High."




Sue Jameson

Sue Jameson is an actress and author, best known for her television work. Early in her career her roles included Myra Booth in Coronation Street, Kate in 'Take Three Girls' and Jessie Seaton in 'When the Boat Comes In'. She has acted with her husband James Bolam in several series, including an early episode of The Likely Lads as well as When The Boat Comes In, New Tricks, Grandpa in My Pocket and an ITV legal drama entitled Close and True (screened in 2000), which also starred Robson Green. She has also appeared in TV dramas Casualty and Mid-summer murders.

Sue is also the author of 'Pony Tails' published by 'Forelock Books' and this is in fact how she first became involved with Ride High.

Sue who has visited Ride High on several occasions and spent time with our children said "I am tremendously proud and honoured to be a Patron of Ride High. I am constantly amazed by the work the charity does to change the lives of young people and I look forward to supporting them in the future".





Amanda Shirtcliffe

Amanda had her first riding lesson at 6yrs old and from the moment she climbed aboard that fluffy white stead she was smitten. From that day on she rode regularly, saving up all her shiny gold coins until she could afford to purchase a four-legged beast of her very own.

Her competitive career kicked off in the show ring but her heart always belonged galloping flat out across country & soaring over natural fences. Over the years she had a few near misses; a nasty rotational fall caused significant damage to her spine resulting in months of rehabilitation, but this never deterred her and she was back hurtling over ditches and hedges the minute she was able.

In 2012 Amanda was diagnosed with Dystonia, an incurable neurological movement disorder. Her legs, arms, and neck are affected, as is her balance, co-ordination and motor skills. As the disease progresses her body is a lot less obliging than it used to be, getting back in the saddle and regaining her balance is something she's had to work hard at.

Most people in her position would be content at just being able to ride, but for Amanda it's not enough, she missed the electrifying buzz and nervous energy of a competition arena. Amanda refused to give in; embraced her disability and is now the highest ranked British Grade 3 rider in the world! Amanda is now focused on giving everything she's got to get selected to represent Great Britain at the Paralympics in Tokyo 2020.

Amanda said "I am proud to have been asked to be a patron of Ride High. Ride High is a truly inspirational charity and it is wonderful to see how our equestrian friends enrich the lives of vulnerable children as they do my own life. I am looking forward to supporting Ride High and to supporting the Ride High Equestrian Centre in making horse riding more accessible in the future".

Children we help each week


Total children we have helped so far



How many years we have been running


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