Structure of the SRT

Organisational Structure


Management of the SRT is organised according to the following structure (click to view more information):

The SRT relies on the support of volunteers to carry out its vital work. If you can offer your time, expertise or financial support please contact us. We would love to hear from you.

SRT Board of Trustees


The Board of Trustees is legally responsible for all of the trust’s activities, ensuring that the trust abides by its charitable aims, works within the law and delivers its aims effectively. The trustees oversee the policies and objectives of the trust and ensure that the work of the organisation is monitored and evaluated effectively.

Dr Anne Bondi BHSI, Trust Director


A successful rider and trainer who has competed at advanced level both in Eventing and Dressage, Anne has also been placed in international three-day events including Windsor, Blair and Blenheim. As a trainer, she has prepared pupils for both competition careers and professional exams and was a Senior Examiner of the British Horse Society. Specialising both in the production of young competition horses and in the education of problem horses, she also produced a dynasty of homebred horses.


Over the years, the management of the horses became more natural – competing from the field, the horses were happier and stayed sounder. But one problem remained – saddles. Anne believes that the natural progression in 1999 to the treeless concept has been the biggest step forward in horse welfare in her lifetime.


In 2006, Anne founded Solution Saddles in order to research and develop a saddle design that would really make a difference to performance.


In 2009, the Saddle Research Trust was born through discussions with other like-minded people who strive to promote the welfare of the horse and to raise awareness of the widely underestimated issues surrounding saddles, equine backs and performance.


In 2018, Anne was awarded a Professional Doctorate by the University of Sunderland for a research project titled "A preliminary investigation of asrynchrony in the three-element interaction of horse, saddle and rider".





blair dressage


Alex Jakob-Whitworth MA PGCE, Trustee


Alex has been involved with horses all her life and it is through her work as an Equine Massage Therapist that she has become more involved in the equine back and the demands made upon it.


She trained at the world famous Yorkshire Riding Centre with Jane and Christopher Bartle, competed up to Elementary level in British Dressage and has started her own young horses.


Alex runs workshops and clinics in Equine Massage, Behaviour, Anatomy, Handling and Groundwork, and Tack Awareness. For over fifteen years, Alex has taught and assessed the Pat Ki Equine Therapy (Massage) Diploma, accredited by the FHT.


She is currently extending her studies (Professional Diploma in Equine Therapy and Rehabilitation) into equine biomechanics as she believes that this can greatly enhance our understanding of how the horse and rider function as a pair, as well as increase knowledge of the subtle differences that different equines exhibit depending on the demands made of them.


Alex has also been involved in education and teaching for over twenty-five years. She is a trained and qualified teacher, gaining her PGCE from Leeds University (with Special Commendation) in 1990. She completed her Masters in Art and Psychotherapy, graduating from Sheffield School of Medicine (with Distinction) in 1995.


Alex has worked in all areas of education, including FE, HE and Adult Education. She has also written, delivered and assessed courses and workshops: GCSE, A Level, educational conferences and courses for Adult Education trusts. She manages partnership projects in schools and delivers CPD training for teachers.


As a talented practising artist, Alex also delivers workshops and courses, exhibits in London galleries and works with people with dementia and their carers using art and singing.





Amanda Robson ITEC Dip BHSAI Int SM, Trustee


Profile coming soon.





Elizabeth Gandy MSc MBCS, Trustee


Elizabeth (Liz) graduated from the University of Durham with a BSc (Hons.) in Mathematics in 1989 and an MSc in Computing in 1993. She worked as a software engineer in the pipeline inspection industry for seven years before taking up her current role as Senior Lecturer in the School of Computer Science at the University of Sunderland in 2000.


As a disabled rider, she has experienced first-hand the issues of asymmetry and this has led her to focus her research on the development of software tools to support the use of technology in the measurement and analysis of horse, rider and saddle interactions.


Recent work, in collaboration with physiotherapists, coaches and equestrian practitioners, has included investigation of the potential of the Xsens MVN inertial motion capture system for the measurement of hip angle and pelvic orientation in the assessment of asymmetry in riders.


She is currently enrolled on a part-time PhD programme, investigating requirements and interface design implications for the presentation of inertial motion sensor data to equestrian practitioners.


She also takes an active role in the day-to-day running of the SRT by managing the website.

Liz Gandy

SRT Advisory Committee


To support the Board of Trustees, the Organising Commitee comprises additional voluntary members, who provide specialist expertise and advice.


The organising committee currently includes the following roles (click to view more information):

Sue Dyson MA, Vet MB, PhD, DEO, FRCVS

Honorary Veterinary Advisor


Sue qualified from the University of Cambridge in 1980 with a first class honours degree in Applied Biology, and a degree in Veterinary Medicine, with distinction in Medicine and Surgery. After some time working in equine practice in the USA, Sue returned to Great Britain to take a position in clinical orthopaedics in the Centre for Equine Studies of the Animal Health Trust, Newmarket. She is currently Head of Equine Clinical Orthopaedics.


Sue has lectured internationally and published widely on equine orthopaedics and diagnostic imaging. She has published more than 200 refereed papers in scientific journals, relating to lameness and diagnostic imaging in the horse and has contributed to a number of books. She has been a long-standing member of Council of the British Equine Veterinary Association and is a past President. She has also been a long-standing member of the Board of the World Equine Veterinary Association and Vice-President.


Sue also holds the Instructors and Stable Managers Certificates of the British Horse Society (BHSI) and has competed at advanced level in both horse trials and show jumping, producing horses that have subsequently competed successfully at the Olympic Games & World Equestrian Games. She is a former veterinary advisor to British Eventing.


Click here for a more detailed biography.

Sue Dyson


Honorary Scientific Advisor


After qualifying from Cambridge Veterinary School in 1983 and working there as a House Physician, Pat completed her PhD at the AHT, Newmarket into ‘Some aspects of the Equine Rhabdomyolysis Syndrome’.


She joined the WALTHAM Centre for Pet Nutrition in 1995 and is responsible for the research carried out by the Equine Studies group, which provides the science behind the SPILLERS®, BUCKEYE® and WINERGY® brands.


Pat is currently Director of Science at MARS HorseCare, as well as Adjunct Professor of Equine Studies at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, a Visiting Professor at the University of Liverpool, an Honorary Professor in Equine Nutrition, University of Nottingham, School of Veterinary Medicine and Science, an Adjunct Professor at University of Queensland Australia, and an European Specialist in Veterinary Clinical and Comparative Nutrition.


She is a Past President of the British Equine Veterinary Association, has been on the editorial board of several journals, was a reviewer for the NRC Nutrient requirements of Horses (2007) and recently was a NRC committee member on the Safety of dietary supplements for horses, dogs and cats (2009).


Pat lectures all over the world on nutrition as it affects the health, welfare, behaviour and performance of the horse. She is the author or co-author of numerous lay as well as over 350 scientific papers, abstracts and book chapters.

Pat Harris

Sarah Shephard

Honorary Public Relations Advisor


Sarah is a public relations consultant and director of Bright Bay PR, specialising in the equestrian and veterinary sectors.


Some of Sarah’s corporate clients include major brands in the veterinary pharmaceutical, feed and charity sectors, with the primary focus on the equestrian industry. Sarah worked for many years in the press offices of Burghley, Badminton, Olympia Show Jumping and Royal Windsor Horse Shows, building up comprehensive contacts within the equestrian world.


Her skills in media relations and copywriting combined with her veterinary and technical expertise are invaluable, whilst her hands-on experience of the pleasures and pitfalls of riding and keeping horses provide her with a unique edge.


With a history graduate’s ability to interpret facts rapidly and present them lucidly, Sarah has also gained diverse experience working as PR manager for international charity World Horse Welfare and heading the business division of a successful London agency.

Sarah Shephard

David Bondi PhD

Honorary Strategy Advisor

Dr. David Bondi acts as strategic advisor to the trustees. As a busy managing director working in the food manufacturing sector, he also enjoys competing homebred horses.


As a quantum physicist he has a keen interest in the objective scientific testing of performance equipment, particularly for the long-term benefit of performance horses.


Pictured is David winning at Chatsworth Horse Trials, with Benedict, a homebred by Fleetwater Opposition.

david at chatsworth

Jan Birch

Honorary Education and Knowledge Transfer Advisor


Profile coming soon


Annie Pollock

Trust Administrator


I work with a group of riders with both physical and learning difficulties; some of these are severe – Down’s syndrome, Rubenstein Tasi syndrome, microsephalis, cerebral palsy, autistic spectrum disorder, osteoporosis.


One of the benefits of riding as a therapy is the movement through the rider’s spine caused by the movement of the horse. Understanding that the horse must also move freely is therefore important in order to enhance the beneficial effects to the rider. 


Because all those in our therapy group are adult riders who are very much more unbalanced and one sided than is normal, I have had real concerns regarding the discomfort that can be caused to the therapy horse by this type of work if the saddle is not an optimum fit.


I am pleased to be involved with the work of the trust and look forward to applying our knowledge in the important field of riding therapy - for the welfare of the horses and the well-being of the riders.


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