West Auckland RDA was previously called Henderson RDA.
Henderson RDA was established in 1976, after Tom Atchison from NZRDA met with Henderson Pony Club in 1975 to suggest the formation of a local RDA group in Henderson. Henderson Pony Club resolved to start an RDA group and supply the horses, grazing and volunteers.
The Henderson RDA committee was formed, which included Zoe Everson, a special needs teacher at Henderson South School, Mrs Rankin, a nurse who also worked with the school, Jack Field, Pat Tilby and a few others from Henderson Pony Club.
Zoe Everson and Mrs Rankin acted as Coach and Therapist. During those early years, they would bring students each Wednesday, from Henderson South School Room 9, the special needs class at the local school in Garelja Road.
Jack would bring his four ponies from his house up the road. The equipment comprised of 4 sheepskins. There was no mounting ramp (lucky Jack’s ponies were little).
In 2017 the name was changed to West Auckland Riding for the Disabled to reflect the group’s service to the wider West Auckland area.
In 2020 Auckland Council granted a Lease to enable the development of RDA facilities, and in particular, a Covered Riding Facility. West Auckland RDA are grateful for the support Henderson Valley Pony Club to make this possible. The two groups will continue working alongside one another in partnership to provide an accessible equestrian park for people of all abilities.