WIN: Your chance to win a free carriage driving lesson

PUBLISHED: 12:21 18 June 2009 | UPDATED: 09:06 02 June 2010

Town Carriage Company, Chatteris

Town Carriage Company, Chatteris

TUCKED away in an idyllic corner of Fenland is Attwood Farm, home of Townies Carriage Hire – a place where you can take a step back in time and enjoy the simple recreation of our forefathers. Assistant Editor Nicki Walker, went along to learn the art of c

Town carriage company, Chatteris

TUCKED away in an idyllic corner of Fenland is Attwood Farm, home of Townies Carriage Hire - a place where you can take a step back in time and enjoy the simple recreation of our forefathers.

Assistant Editor Nicki Walker, went along to learn the art of carriage driving.

IN recent years there has been a huge surge in "experience days" where you can drive Ferrari, jump out of an aeroplane, or ride down white-water rapids.

But for those of you, who may be seeking something a little more tranquil yet still unique, then have a go at carriage driving.

It really a fun and safe experience and driving through the Fenland countryside and it helps you relax and forget all your troubles.

My tutor for the evening, was Tom Farmer, who runs the Townies Carriage Hire, and I could not have been in safer hands.

His family has a long-established history with horse and carriages and the business has been around for almost 100 years.

There has been three generations involved, and it began in 1911 when the business operated in London as a self-drive hire - where people could hire out a horse and carriage, similar to hiring cars or vans today.

As the years passed, the need for hiring horses decreased, and the family then started hiring their horse and carriages for film work.

Tom, took over the business and eventually decided to relocate to Tick Fen in Chatteris.

Now they hire out horses for special occasions such as wedding and school proms and also work with local funeral directors, but Tom also teaches private lessons for either a single, pair or three or four.

He said: "If someone wants to learn they certainly can, we do get a lot more older people having lessons, but really this can appeal to anyone.

"It really is great to drive a horse and carriage and it really is enjoyable."

He currently has four horses, all Friesians, and all standing over 16 hands high.

Our horse for the night was Watz, who is 12 years old.

During my lesson Tom took tremendous care to explain how each part of the harness worked, and by teaching me how to put it on, I appreciated fully how it worked with the horse and carriage.

When we took to the road, he talked me through how to control the horse, and still and encourage him to push on, and although I had one questionable turn around a corner, my first lesson worked out well.

And at such a surprisingly reasonable price, I am already planning to sign up for a second lesson soon.

To find out more either call 01354 692630 or email towniescarriagehireltd@fsmail.net

The horse and carriages are available for hire for all special occasions, from weddings to school proms.

COMPETITION

AND with Father's Day this Sunday- Tom has offered one lucky reader the chance to win a driving lesson.

You can arrange to take the lesson at a later date, and to win this fabulous prize all you need to do is answer this simple question.

What is the name of the horse in this feature?

Send your answers to Carriage Driving Competition, The Wisbech Standard and Cambs Times, 51 High Street, March, PE15 9JJ.

Or email nicki.walker@archant.co.uk

Closing date is Friday June 26.

Normal Archant rules apply.


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