Saturday, January 04, 2014

Miniature ponies visit Hazelgrove Court Care Home.

The tiniest ponies imaginable have visited Saltburn's Hazelgrove Court Care Home, on Randolph Street, to give the elderly residents there a start to the New Year they’ll never forget.

Star of the show was American miniature pony Blondie, at just 26 inches high and making her first appearance for K and L Pony Therapy, of Darlington.
Although it was Blondie’s first time on duty she was a natural, with a very placid temperament, going to each resident in turn to nuzzle them and get lots of fuss in return.

The cute little stunner was just one of four similar tiny ponies that owner Kate Smith brought to the home for residents to pet.

The organiser of this unusual, but very popular, event was Joanne Burdett, the activities co-ordinator at the home which houses 48 residents aged from their late fifties to late ninties.

Joanne said: “K and L provide miniature ponies to visit care homes on Teesside and further afield."

“They bring them in one at a time, while the other three wait in a trailer outside. The residents have absolutely loved them and are very fond of the ponies - stroking them and petting them - and it does them the world of good and they have a photo taken with them."

Owner Kate said: “We visit lots of care homes, hospitals and schools. People all over Teesside absolutely love them.”

Kate said the tiny charmers live up to 55 years old and are bred as pets in America. They can even be used as guide horses to look after the blind and disabled in the same way as guide dogs.

Kate said: “They are very intelligent and easy to train. I’m currently trying to breed mine and a foal is due next summer which will be so tiny when it’s born, it will gamble about like a little lamb!"

“Obviously, they can’t be ridden, but they are such little characters and all are different.”

One thing seems to be certain - the cute foursome proved to be so popular that they will be riding on back into town again on another visit some time in the future.

January Newsletter, Saltburn Ward

from COUNCILLOR STUART SMITH Contact no. 07557540628


Saltburn will receive an improved bus service under the changes proposed by Arriva to their bus network across Redcar and Cleveland which will commence on the 16th February. The town will be served by 2 routes - X3 and X4 - which will run alternatively every 15 minutes to Middlesbrough and Loftus with the X3 operating once again via Hob Hill to Skelton. Arriva have also notified us this week of their fare changes which will come into effect from 5th January 2014: all child and adult fares below £3.00 are frozen, fares above £3.00 will be increased by 10p, fares above £5.00 will be increased by 20p, day tickets will be increased by 20p per day and 50p weekly and Teesside Tripper Day Ticket prices are frozen.


1. LOSS OF SLIPWAYS AND PART OF SEA WALL - A stonemason will undertake repair work starting in early January. The sandstone blocks will be stored on the lower prom next to the life guard station. The repair work will take up to 8 weeks and each stone will have to be reset in a similar way as a jigsaw. The slipway will have a concrete base where prior to the storm it was compact shingle. Sea wall railings will be replaced.

2. DAMAGE TO ROAD SURFACE - Work underway to repair by Carillion.

3. DAMAGE TO PIER - The pier structure itself appears to be undamaged but will remain closed until access can be gained to the pier head from the beach when tidal flows allow. The main building amusements have suffered extensive damage to the interior due to sea water entering the building. We were told water damage had even occurred to the ceiling. Of concern are that two major supporting beams under the pier head have snapped however the engineer states they should be easily removed and replaced. Time scale on this is unknown but will be carried out a.s.a.p.

4. VICTORIAN SHELTER - The shelter supports were found to be rotten and this has been demolished. It is hoped that funding will be found to replace this shelter.


6. DAMAGED FOOTBRIDGE OVER BECK - Wooden boards repaired and non slip surface applied. Shingle under the road bridge which was pushed in with the high tide was removed lowering the beck level from the bridge span. Long term goal is to replace bridge and construct it closer to the height of the road bridge.

7. EROSION OF BANKSIDE OPPOSITE CAMFIELDS - Armour rock (Gabion baskets would not be permitted by environmental agency) to be placed in various sections to stabilise area. Long term goal is to stabilise whole area with concrete bankside similar to section at picnic area. In addition we were informed that over the past year the sand level on the beach had dropped over one and half feet which if it had been in place would have had a dragging effect on the sea level and wave impact.