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A Mum's story

"A totally different boy"

"He got an EHCP but the school weren't understanding at all, and it just deteriorated, his whole demeanour, his attitude towards himself, school, everything. He was refusing to learn. He was constantly being taken out of classes.  He was punching and kicking the walls, you know, just really distressed. 

"…punching the walls, just really distressed."


"We came to visit Longlands and as soon as he walked in, he was just: 'You've got cows!   And I love that tractor, look, the old tractor.' And he just suddenly kind of opened up and started talking and by the time we left, he was like, 'Oh yes, we love this place.  It can be really good.'


"Once he settled, doing one day a week, he just ran with it. The horses were great for him because animals don't have any preconceptions, do they?  They just take you as you are. I think that kind of made him confident.

 "So Harry was diagnosed with ADHD when he was about eight. We put him in the normal high school because he’d been doing so well. But then they changed all of his meds and his behaviour changed. It turned out that it had masked the fact he's autistic as well as ADHD. Everything went completely chaotic.


"Then they take him indoors and try to do a bit of paperwork, and work on his well-being.  That took a lot longer to come through but they got there in the end. Beth said it was quite challenging, that he could be quite shut down when it comes to talking about his feelings. But by the end, it was like: 'Oh, I've been talking to Beth about this today.'

"Every week without fail. Even if he was ill."


"He loved it. He was there every week without fail. Even if he was ill.

"He was there about 18 months, worked really hard, made lots of new friends and he started to respect elders again. And it was getting to the point where the school were saying he doesn't need it for therapy anymore because he's a totally different boy. We didn't want him to stop, but it's done what we wanted it to do.  He was very sad to leave.

"Now he’s in his last year at school, but in a more suitable school, and going one day a week with his dad to work at another farm. Hopefully he's going to be doing an apprenticeship with them in September and go to college, Hartpury, alongside that.

"Longlands just gave him the freedom to be him."


"Longlands just gave him the freedom to be him. I'm really, really grateful. Really, really grateful.    It was amazing." 


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