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Review of Tor Royal Stables - CLOSED

Tor Royal Stables
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Attraction details
Owner description: Trekking Stable in the centre of Dartmoor, ride out over history on our sturdy horses and ponies, lovely qualified Staff short and long rides to suit your ability. All ages 4 - 104 as long as you are able to get on (and off) the horse!
Reviewed September 12, 2013

I wanted to try tor royal as had read on trip advisor that it was very good! I am a nervous novice and get frightened easily if a horse does scary stuff like spook or bolt etc. I was v.tense and nervous before going and had a long drive on a motorbike and was stressing about getting wet on bike from rain. Anyhow made it to Tor Royal and I was nervous but the boss lady was great and really understood my nerves were jangling big time!!! She introduced me to Sam a young lady who was taking me out on my trek! The yard was neat and tidy and not a chaotic mess of visitors and staff. Did paperwork and boots for riding. Sam brought a 14.2 black cob out the stable called Grace aged 7. Sam was brilliant she didn't pressure me at all and did it all in my own time and she was most professional and didn't laugh at me or make me feel an idiot! Anyway got on Grace and had a lead rope attached and Sam walked on the ground! We walked up a flat lane and I felt fine after initial tenseness. Walked up on to Dartmoor and all was well until about 10 mins in when out of nowhere Grace spooked BIG TIME. Their was nothing around for her to do this at all and I screamed and grace threw herself around and I got THROWN off. I was PETRIFIED but thankfully landed on soft mossy grass and although I was shaken and traumatised-no lasting damage done. Sam was brilliant and just gave me my space and time to recover. However I was not happy with Grace as a horse for a novice. I got thrown off at walk and on a lead rope. I know horses can be unpredictable but at that pace with a rope attached - why would Grace even try anything silly?? Sam even said it was v.odd for Grace to spook like that but nonetheless she did and much as the staff looked after me so well that horse needs to be taken out of trek work and suitability for novice riders re-evaluated and re-assessed. She is dangerous and in hindsight perhaps still abit young for novice riders. I don't blame anyone at Tor Royal at all...the staff are 5 star. I don't know if I would return to Tor Royal for a ride as my trust with their horses is abit shattered but it was a one in a million that happened so perhaps when psychologically I feel stronger I might go again but on a different horse! My thanx to Sam who really was 5 star through it all and she saved my life as I think it could have been a lot worse if she had not have clung on to lead rope with everything she had!!! Don't be put off by my review as Tor Royal is excellent in every other way but be wary if your a novice rider and get put on Grace. Happy trekking!!!

2  Thank m N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Justine C, Manager at Tor Royal Stables, responded to this reviewResponded September 14, 2013

We are really sorry that you l fell off, but would like to point out that although the pony spooked, it was not the 'near death' experience that is stated, you became unseated and slipped off. The pony is used by beginners and experience people alike, and we have never had anyone fall off her before, but as you are aware hoses have their own brains and they are more aware of what is going on around them than we are, especially when you are busy having a conversation whilst riding and not concentrating on the horse, I am glad that you were not hurt, and feel sorry that you felt fit to write such a negative trip advisor report.

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Reviews (33)
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4 - 8 of 33 reviews

Reviewed August 24, 2013

My two teenage daughters enjoyed a two hour moorland ride at Tor Royal stables this week. They came back grinning from ear to ear and the younger one even went on to describe the ride as being 'one of the best mornings of my life!".
Both girls are fairly experienced riders however I was really impressed with the care Adele took in finding out just how well they could ride before they all set off. My girls loved the horses that they rode (Rosie and Innca) and enjoyed several fast canters over the moors, which was an amazing experience for them. They were accompanied on the hack by Adele and the girls commented on how friendly she was.
I believe my younger daughter talked non stop for two hours so I'd like to thank Adele for her patience, as well as for enabling both girls to have such a fantastic ride!

1  Thank Adele M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 8, 2013 via mobile

As an experienced rider attending with my non-riding boyfriend I was a tad worried what to expect! Well Tor Royal excelled itself! The hacking was fantastic with my boyfriend being taught whilst we hacked resulting in him joining in with canters with us! The horses are well looked after, they are happy and not like machines, as per some trekking centres! The horses enjoyed their work and were forward going or slow as upu desired! but above all very obedient! The staff Sam & Adele where excellent hosts resulting in both my boyfriend and I riding for a second day as we enjoyed so much. I highly recommend for both beginners & experienced riders. We will be back!

1  Thank Jadeeaston
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 5, 2013

I was due to ride with people who cancelled due to poor weather, sad that they then wrote a bad review. I received lovely hospitality and the staff & manager could not have been more helpful or polite. The Lovely old stone stables are immaculate, the horses in good condition, quality well fitting tack. Yes, it rained but they are on the high moors and gave me a mac to wear. I have lifetime of horses and significant welfare awards. I would not tolerate poor standards in stable management. I was thrilled to ride the loveliest big highland pony - a dear patient gentlemen. I love highland ponies and had a magical experience in the rain. Thank you Tor Royal and the adorable Scotty.

2  Thank Alison F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 3, 2013

I cancelled our ride this morning and was shocked to receive a verbal slap in the face from the person who answered the phone. For business purposes I recommend you treat your customers as friendly when they decide to come as when they decide not to come. Customer is king in any business. I also recommend you check the BBC weather chart and do not claim fair weather when it is clearly not. We got soaking wet when we rode in April when we were told Princetown wheather was fine, when it was vertical rain. The person who took us out and the horses were very good, but I did not like the treatment I received this morning from the manager when I cancelled due to bad weather.

4  Thank Goldi H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Justine C, Owner at Tor Royal Stables, responded to this reviewResponded August 5, 2013

Really sorry you think you received a bad response to your phone call today, we aim to treat all customers with respect, the customer is always right.. did you ask to speak with the manager? Here in Princetown the weather is a law unto itself, being high up we either miss or get all the wet weather, today was patchy and we had two dry and sunny rides out, although I am aware that down the road in Yelverton they were not so lucky, we can only go by what is out the window at the time. I believe that you did not pay a deposit so have not lost out and hopefully found some dry weather where you were.

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