Since 2013, Joanna Murphy has been working for Marcus Tregoning Racing, grooming their horses and assisting their vets, besides being a part time horse riding coach. Her passion for horses led to her interest in saddle making as she became increasingly aware of the importance of a well fitted and well-made saddle for a horse’s physical strength and support.
Having previously trained through the Society of Master Saddlers, Joanna then approached Master saddle fitter and QEST Scholar Clare Barnett, to undertake an apprenticeship in saddlery.
Joanna’s intention for her apprenticeship is to work towards being a Master Saddler and saddle fitter, learning how to make all items of leather tack and saddlery in order to be able to fit saddles to various horses and allow the horse to perform to its best ability.
Joanna has a keen interest in learning traditional leather craft and wants to use this knowledge to create modern products of a high standard that are relevant to competitive riding and showcase traditional, quality craftsmanship. Joanna strongly believes that traditional making still has a place and is far better and safer than cheap imported tack. She intends to create well-crafted saddles that consider the horse’s welfare first and foremost in order to allow both horse and rider to perform at their best.
Joanna will undertake a three year apprenticeship at Bearhouse Saddlery with Master Clare Barnett. During the apprenticeship she will also attend courses at City and Guilds in order to fully qualify as a Master saddler and fitter.