Brave Daniel defies doctors’ expectations to saddle up for Riding for the Disabled in Sutton

Five year old Daniel Lee Barrett with his favourite pony Maddie on a trek with Riding for the Disabl

Five year old Daniel Lee Barrett with his favourite pony Maddie on a trek with Riding for the Disabled. Picuture: RIDING FOR THE DISABLED - Credit: Archant

A young boy who defied doctors’ expectations will bravely saddle up his favourite pony tomorrow raising funds for the Suffolk horse riding charity that has supported him over recent years.

Daniel Lee-Barrett, five, has been taking weekly outings with Riding for the Disabled’s (RDA) Woodbridge and District Group to help him have fun during cerebral palsy physiotherapy.

Doctors said Daniel would not live past the age of two. He has severe visual and mobility issues, cannot stand on his own and needs a wheelchair.

But tomorrow, on his favourite pony Maddie, Daniel will set off on a 600 metre horse trek, which organisers say will be a “mammoth undertaking”.

Daniel’s Mum, Stephanie Lee-Barrett said: “Daniel has been horse riding at the RDA for over 2 years.

“He really enjoys the sessions and has come on leaps and bounds since he first started. It has improved his confidence in different environments and situations, helped with his posture and muscular control of his body and has enabled him to have fun whilst doing physiotherapy”.

The RDA is currently based at Sutton but will relocate to Clopton this autumn in a move the charity says is “challenging” financially.

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The funds raised by Daniel will help the charity continue with its work.

Mrs Lee-Barrett said: “What they do is amazing, they give children and adults the opportunity to feel free, relaxed and happy. We just had to help raise awareness of the job they do and money for the move”.

Viv Sadler, one of the volunteer instructors at the RDA said: “We are so grateful for everyone who raises money for our group.

“We are self funding and our move comes as an extra cost, over and above our day-to-day running costs. We are overwhelmed by Daniel’s ambition to raise money for us. This is a huge undertaking for him – it would be like running the London Marathon for most of us. He has made so much progress and we will all be there supporting him on 15th July.”

Daniel’s trek takes place at the RDA’s farewell party at noon tomorrow at Pettistree Hall Farm, Sutton,

Visit here to sponsor Daniel.