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Our History

Moorland Mousie Trust

The Moorland Mousie Trust is a small, local charity founded in 2000 by Val Sherwin and Sue Wingate. The trust was named after the Moorland Mousie books written by Golden Gorse, the pseudonym of Muriel Wace.

The book, written in 1929, is a story about the life of an Exmoor Pony called Mousie and was read by Val as a child. On a visit to Exmoor to purchase an Exmoor pony Val became aware that many of the foals, mostly colts, would go to the meat market for slaughter. Although she originally intended on buying one filly foal, when realising what might happen to it's friend she bought him too. They were named Abbi and Yorick. It was from this experience that an idea was born.

When the charity was founded it's aim was to ensure that no more foals would leave their mothers on the moor to go to the meat market. Since those early days, the work of the trust has moved on to encompass all aspects of Exmoor pony welfare.

Our Impact

To date our charity has taken in over 500 ponies from moorland herds who otherwise had no where else to go.  We have also assisted in handling and training over 100 ponies whose owners needed a little extra support in order to give their ponies a real chance at a happy future.

At the Moorland Mousie Trust and Exmoor Pony Centre we believe all Exmoor ponies deserve the right to being treated fairly, with dignity and respect.  Since the beginning of the charity over 20 years ago, we have seen positive steps towards the approach to handling ponies straight from the moor, an increase in popularity of the Exmoor pony breed and the introduction of improved responsible breeding and management programmes. Every year over 6000 people visit our Centre, discover the breed and connect with a special part of Exmoor.

However there is still more to do and unfortunately there are still Exmoor ponies in need of our assistance.

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