“I can only recommend choosing Tom Swayne Equestrian to build your arena. You are in very good hands: you will receive professional advice to choose your surface, you will be amazed by the step by step conscientious building and you will get all Tom’s knowledge about how to maintain your beautiful riding arena! The choice of the surface is different for every type of rider, yard, budget but the base of your school, its build what it seats on, is what can make the real difference on the long term and this is where I am so pleased I chose Tom for the job. I personally went for a flexi ride surface as I needed something good value for money, for reasonably intensive use in all disciplines, all weather and easy to maintain with a small tractor as I run, mainly on my own, a riding school and livery yard. However what ever your surface choice will be it is down to you to maintain your beautiful school properly and be sensible: no lungeing (if you have to, make sure you have control of your horse and move your circles as if you were riding), pull the sides, harrow at the very least once a week, change the place of your jumps every now and then, change the lines you follow to make use of the whole surface, poo pick, keep pets out……If anyone wants to come and have a look at the school Tom’s done for me, my riding school and livery yard is in Ruckinge near Ashford, Kent. All the details of what we do and how to find us on www.hopdogstables.co.uk
Maïa Buisson, BHSI Instructor at Hop Dog Stables Ashford KENT, 2012
Tom refurbished my ménage 2 years ago. The school was put in 8 years ago by another company, but I had never been really happy with it. When it rained it flooded quite badly in certain areas and in the summer it got very deep. As I run a livery yard of approximately 20 horses this was not ideal, as it is in constant use. I invited Tom along to give me a quote and discuss my needs. I had some idea of what I wanted and it needed to be done on a very tight budget. Tom was brilliant. He gave me very valid reasons why I could not do some of the things I wanted to do and came up with some very good ideas of things we could do, which allowed me to use the existing surface. Tom arranged for samples of different surfaces to be sent to me. As I felt I needed to add something to the sand I had to improve it. We decided to add Top-Ride to give it more spring than just the dead sand and it helped hold the moisture in the summer, which makes it much easier to ride on
I am absolutely delighted with the end result. It still rides extremely well and the only time we are unable to use it is when it is covered with several inches of snow. Tom was a delight to deal with and I would most certainly use him again in the future.
Vanessa Mayes, Britton Farm Livery Stables 2012
I had independently purchased a steel building and had a relationship with a company that was going to erect it for me and Tom Swayne was recommended to me for the installation of our indoor arena surface. Tom is the upmost professional – providing advice and guidance all the way. He was able to slot us into his busy schedule and arrived early in the mornings and worked till quite late at night to ensure our surface was installed to provide us enough time to bed it down before the planned opening of the training centre. I would have no hesitation what so ever in recommending Tom to provide any ground works or arena installation – he keeps to his word and leaves the site exactly as he promises.
I wanted an arena that would blend into the paddock as unobtrusively as possible as it is close to the road, that had no fence line as such to help my horse with his straightness, and that would drain well and be easy to look after. Tom Swayne listened to my requirements, made lots of suggestions and the finished product has far exceeded my expectations. It looks and rides fantastically well, and because of the positioning there is no fence visible as the whole arena has been sunk into the paddock. Tom was professional throughout, used top quality materials, and was very competitively priced. He left the site tidy, replanted the trees we had to move for vehicle access and transported the excess earth to a different paddock where we needed it. I would have no hesitation in recommending Tom to anyone thinking of installing an arena.
Gill Marchant, Rodmersham, Kent (October 2011)
“English Heritage now have a new riding arena at Audley End nr Saffron Walden, Essex.
The new riding arena, together with opening up of the stables buildings with exhibition space and the stabling of horses, provides a greatly improved visitor experience by expanding on the popular equestrian theme that has been reintroduced at Audley End.
The construction of the riding arena was completed by Tom Swayne. The arena is basically an overlay construction which had little impact on the historic environment; an important factor in agreeing permission to undertake this construction. The work was undertaken with great care, communication throughout the process was excellent, and the end result was very good indeed. I would not hesitate in recommending Tom Swayne’s services.”
David Brown, Project Manager for English Heritage, East Territory (March 2011)
“Our arena was installed in Sept 2010 by Tom Swayne. He was very considerate throughout regarding other livestock and welfare of the paddocks, rearranging truck deliveries as and when necessary . Once the arena was fully functional any fencing that had been disrupted was re-instated by Tom. It has been a huge success, the arena drains amazingly well, all the recent wet weather not affecting it at all. We chose flexi ride as the surface which has a super springy feel to it and seems to be pretty low maintenance . The site was left as if no one had ever been there . Many Thanks.”
Rachel Wilson, Challock, Kent
“Tom Swayne carried out the construction of my 22 x 42 metre riding arena, at my home near Egerton in Kent. Tom and his team are extremely professional and completed the work to a very high standard. We are very happy with our new school, and would very much recommend his company to anyone considering building a new arena. Many Thanks.”
Russell Stevens, Egerton, Kent (July 2010)