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  • Writer's pictureDanny Joyce | Editor

New Equine Centre to be named in memory of Jack de Bromhead at the ChildVision campus in Drumcondra

Today ChildVision, the specialist therapy and education centre for children with visual impairment, announced that a much-needed new indoor equine therapeutic centre, named in memory of Jack de Bromhead, will be built this year as a result of generous donations from a group of family and friends of the de Bromhead family.

The new indoor facility at the ChildVision campus will give children who are blind, multi-disabled and neurodiverse access to the best global equine activities in a supportive and purpose designed environment and will allow the ChildVision equine team and volunteers to extend their services to reach more children over more hours making a life-changing difference, especially through the winter months and in bad weather conditions.

Spearheaded by the de Bromhead family friend and well-known racehorse owner Chris Jones, and with the blessing of Jack’s parents Heather and Henry, the €1,000,000 donation target required to complete the equine therapeutic centre, was reached last December.


To continue to donate towards the running costs of ChildVision’s equine programme, Kenny Alexander, owner of equine superstar Honeysuckle, which was trained by Henry, has donated the racing colours that Rachael Blackmore wore in all of their major races including four Cheltenham Festival victories and nine Irish Grade 1 winners. The iconic silks, signed by Rachael, Henry and Kenny, will be auctioned at the Goffs sale at the Punchestown Festival on Thursday, May 2.


The de Bromhead family – Henry, Heather and their daughters Mia and Georgia, said of today’s announcement: “The equine centre will be a wonderful legacy for our beloved Jack, a hugely missed son and brother. Horses are a huge part of our lives, and we know the physical experience of riding a horse offers so many potential benefits, especially helping address a host of physical, social and emotional issues."

"More so, it will be a place of learning and hope, full of laughter and joy, traits that were such a part of Jack, all facilitated by the much-treasured horses and ponies that call the ChildVision stables home. We are looking forward to following the development and construction of the new equine therapeutic centre and being there to cut the ribbon when it is completed. We are forever grateful to those who came on board to support us – we know Jack would be really proud of what this life-changing generosity will enable.”


Speaking about how the idea came about, Chris Jones, said: “I was fortunate to have the opportunity to visit ChildVision last summer and to see first-hand the therapeutic impact that equine can have on children with complex needs. I knew that Henry and Heather already had a connection to ChildVision and knowing that many friends and family members wanted to find some way to mark Jack’s love of horses in a tangible way, the Jack de Bromhead Equine Centre concept came to fruition. The response to my call for donations was unbelievably kind and generous. It’s a testament to the high regard the de Bromheads are held in, that we are in a position to make the equine centre at ChildVision in Jack’s name, a reality.”


Barry Sheridan, ChildVision CEO, commented: “We have an ambitious plan for the ChildVision campus and front and centre was trying to secure funding for an equine therapeutic centre. We had already raised over €500,000 but without this extraordinary fundraising support we would not have been in a position to break ground in 2024 on this vital facility. We would like to thank the de Bromhead family, Chris Jones and the other wonderful benefactors for enabling our dream to come true. We will ensure that Jack’s legacy and that of his loving family, who so generously agreed to share his name with us, will live on for generations to come.”

Speaking about the Honeysuckle colours to be auctioned at the Punchestown Festival, Rachael Blackmore, said: “Honeysuckle gave me some of the best days of my career - her colours hold a lot of very special memories. Zoe, Henry’s travelling head girl, always kept this one special set aside just for Honeysuckle and I wore them in all of Honeysuckle’s big days at Fairyhouse, Leopardstown, Cheltenham and Punchestown."


"They are going to be auctioned at the Goffs sale on day three of the Punchestown Festival, Thursday May 2 and all money raised will be donated to the operating costs of the new Jack de Bromhead Equine Centre. The donation will make a lasting difference to those children and their families who will benefit so much from the amazing work that they do at ChildVision, where hopefully many more great memories will be made.”


Garvan Hanley of Hanley Taite Design Partnership based in Virginia, Co. Cavan has been commissioned by ChildVision to design the new centre on the campus. The new Equine Centre is a contemporary, tensile fabric, curved roofed building with timber and brick clad walls providing an enclosed sand arena, stables for up to 10 horses and ponies, changing facilities, offices, a viewing area/learning space and all ancillary accommodation. The building extends to 1375 sq.m. and will provide services in all weather and on dark evenings in an environment that will offer comfort and safety to its users.


For updates, follow ChildVision on Social Media:

Instagram @childvisionvi


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