Monatrea Equestrian Centre
Welcome to Monatrea Equestrian Centre, one of Ireland’s oldest established riding centres, spanning some 60 years. Founded in 1951 with the purchase of ‘Spinster’ who’s blood lines are still to the fore in the Monatrea horses.
We offer our guests the opportunity to ride with us through quiet country lanes, grassy boreens and open farm land. The beautiful beaches of Whiting Bay, Ardmore and Ferry Point are on our door step which makes for a lovely ride – tides permitting! Choose from a one to two hour hack or for the more experienced a day ride which is approximately four hours.
For those looking for tuition, why not avail of our professional instructors in our outdoor 60 x 20 m ménage. Tuition is available from the top levels of dressage, showjumping and cross country to young children on their first ponies. The school is used by local Pony and Riding Clubs for instruction and is available for hire.
If you would like to bring your own horse / pony with you on your holidays to our stables, please do as there is plenty of green grass. Or, why not, leave your horses here with us on full or half livery in our yard which is a modern American style barn.
Our proximity to several national and international Event courses, Showjumping and Race courses gives our guests at Monatrea the opportunity to view the best of Irish bread horses in action.
The History of Monatrea Equestrian Centre
Monatrea Equestrian Centre has its origins dating back from the mid to late 1950’s, when in fact it had nothing to do with Monatrea at all. Its foundations originate from the farm at Woodbine Hill, in Kinsalebeg, West Waterford on the south coast of Ireland, a stones throw from the sea.
The first information we have on the founding of an equestrian teaching facility at Woodbine comes from it’s original founder Mary Roch-Perks. A fine horse lady and daughter of the late Col. Horace Roch (Insert Dates) who in the early days started teaching friends and friends children to ride as a side line out of the farm yard as early as 1953. She later married George Perks in 1956. Mary ( now Roch-Perks) is still very active in the equestrian world with consistent winners in the Eventing World and more latterly at the Royal Dublin Horse Show.
From the 1950’s through the 1960’s the farm at Woodbine Hill steadily progressed and expanded along with the horses, culminating with the purchase of the house down at Ferry Point called Monatrea in 1968. At the time it was being used by the Sisters of —- as a retreat, but George and Mary Roch-Perks saw potiental as a Hotel and Country Club.
The horses very quickly left the yard at Woodbine Hill and were reinstated in their new quarters at Monatrea House Hotel and Country Club. The brood mares only remained back on the Farm at Woodbine Hill .Here they, for some 20 or so years, blossomed and expanded in the Trekking, Teaching, and Livery areas under the care of Mary’s daughter Laura who later in 1985 married John Griffith. Herself a very successful rider in the Show Jumping, and in particular Eventing World was also a keen Hunting Lady. She was a whip in the U.S.A. under the eye of Mr Ben Hardaway, – himself a keen supporter of the West Waterford Hunt in the days of Tom and Elsie Morgan.
In 1985, due to financial investment required on the farm to bring it into the modern world, Monatrea House Hotel was sold to a Philippian lady to raise funds. It remained a Hotel for another two years until sold to its current Swiss owner in 1988, who has it as a private house. When the Hotel was sold the horse’s were all purchased and moved out to their current location at the Farm House, Springfield. Formally the home of the late Emily Roch ( The mother of Mary and wife of the Col.) had been purchased by your hosts John and Laura in 1986.
The name Monatrea has remained with the horses ( as a prefix) and as the Equestrian Centre to this day – one of the oldest in the country spanning some 60 years and three generations of instructor. Laura still manages the horses and young stock with her daughter Melian from our modern facilities that have been developed over the years. American Barn and full 60m x 20m ménage.
The horses are in the blood!
Monatrea Equestrian Centre Gallery