Sara de Vries

Sara is our Lead Facilitator.  Sara started riding at the age of 5 years and been involved with horses ever since. Being passionate about always learning, she has been along many paths to extend her knowledge on horse and human behaviour. For a long period of time she has worked as a Horse Development & Behaviour Specialist and coach based on psychology, helping horse owners manage the problems they faced with their own horses.   Prior to this, Sara worked within the investment banking industry as a Business Manager. 



Julie Boyer

Julie has worked in the higher education sector for over 30 years and, during this time, she has worked in a number of professional services roles predominantly in an advisory capacity to provide regulatory academic support to postgraduate research communities. Throughout her career, Julie has undertaken a wide range of training courses to enhance her working practices and skills in areas such as safeguarding, wellbeing, diversity, equality and inclusion, coaching and mentoring, mental health awareness and data protection. To support her continuing and professional development, Julie has successfully completed an Institute of Leadership & Management, Level 3 Award and, with a keen personal interest in the behavioural and cognitive perspectives of psychology, she is currently studying a Business Psychology BSc (Hons). Outside of the workplace, Julie has regularly volunteered to help at fundraising events and clubs organised by groups within her local community. She is also a keen walker with her dog Charlie by her side.


Clare McCullough

Clare is a qualified accountant with many years experience in the not for profit sector, including Director of Finance roles with the regulator of the National Lottery and Battersea Dogs & Cats Home. Her love of horses started at a young age with donkey rides on Hampstead Heath. Clare became interested in natural horsemanship techniques about 5 years ago and has embraced these methods working with her six ponies. Clare, her herd of ponies and 3 dogs live in East Sussex.


Nick Bolas

Nick didn’t grow up with horses but caught the bug on pony-trekking holidays as a teenager and has ridden ever since. Nick has also made horse health his career. A biochemistry degree at Oxford was followed by a D.Phil from the same university working with the then newly invented magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). He then helped develop bespoke MRI systems for a wide range of applications in medicine, biological science and industry before, in 2000 and along with two business partners, founding Hallmarq Veterinary Imaging Ltd to develop the world’s only MRI scanner for the standing sedated horse. Equine MRI has revolutionised the diagnosis of equine lameness, in particular navicular syndrome. Nick’s work at Hallmarq continues to develop and improve diagnostic imaging for horses. Pre-COVID he has been a senior steward at regional and national level horse shows, and is a keen amateur photographer. He owns two horses, Emma 24 and Daisy 8, and has been working with Parelli Natural Horsemanship techniques with Daisy since she was two.


Samantha Irvine

Having learnt to ride at a young age, Samantha owned ponies until her teens. Career aspirations and a family life meant for some years equine connections revolved around her three children learning to ride. Purchasing Eddie as a family pony in 2014, and having always been fascinated by horses relationships with humans, she embarked upon lessons with Sara. Through these lessons she has formed a stronger bond with Eddie and they continue to develop their learning. Samantha is currently a Business Management Consultant working across various industries.


The Horses