Pearl Gladys Batchelor


100 Years of
Active Women
in The Hills

Nominee: Pearl Gladys Batchelor

Categories: Community Services, Sports


Pearl Gladys Batchelor was the founder of Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) in NSW after her visit in the 1970’s to RDA in England, meeting various people and studying their Constitutions.

In 1972, Pearl commenced horse riding lessons for people with disabilities on her property at West Pennant Hills, “Tall Timbers”.

With Pearl’s foresight and her passion for RDA, she went guarantor for RDA (NSW) and purchased a property at Kellyville. To honour Pearl, the property at Kellyville was named “Tall Timbers” as RDA remained on this property until 2001 when it was sold to Developers. With the funds received, RDA (NSW) purchased a property at Box Hill.

RDA (NSW) “Tall Timbers” now operates successfully from this property at Box Hill and assists approximately 200 people with disabilities per annum. RDA programs cater for people with intellectual disabilities, physical disabilities, injuries resulting from accidents, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, Down syndrome, visual and hearing impairments, autism and amputees.

 Pearl Batchelor with her beloved horse Smarty

Pearl’s contribution and achievements were to work, enhance and enrich the lives of people with disabilities in the entire Hills Shire. It was because of her vision that she established in NSW horse riding activities for people with a disability. It is also because of her vision that her memory will live on in the hearts and minds of many for decades to come.