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James Rayner

Equine Curriculum Manager for Reaseheath College

James is Equine Curriculum Manager for Reaseheath College, one of the UK’s leading land-based colleges based in Cheshire. Responsible for the strategic development and delivery of innovative curriculum models for equine education. He has established and driven a successful link between industry and academia through the development of Industry Mentor Programmes, to enhance not only the learner journey, but providing opportunities and engagement embedded within the curriculum to develop student’s employability skills.

Prior to Reaseheath, James was Yard Manager and Research Assistant for an International Sport Horse Facility and Research Centre in the United States and won the prestigious British Equestrian Federation MAREC Internship in 2012. While at the MAREC James undertook research in several areas of research, primarily: Equine Nutrition, Pasture Management and Reproduction and Foaling. In addition, he has undertaken research at a number of institutions including the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS), Aberystwyth and during his Masters Programme at The University of Edinburgh. James has worked on several large-scale Competition yards and Studs in both the UK and Europe including study at The Brandenburg State Stud at Neustadt (Dosse), Germany. He has previous experience training and competing in Eventing and Advanced Level Dressage in addition to handling and competing foals and youngstock in National Futurity Sport Horse Events and Breed Registries. In his spare time, he continues training students for competition success and is a part of the organisational committee for the North West Regional Dressage Championships. 

Since returning to the UK, James has maintained a key interest in the education and development of the UK equine industry, through involvement as an assistant at the National Equine Forum, sitting on several equine and educational advisory committees including the British Horse Society and serving as a Trustee of the University of Lincoln Students Union. Passionate about engagement with research led initiatives, James is keen to connect equine land managers and horse owners with the latest science-based information promoting equine and environmental wellbeing. He has a keen interest in the development of integral industry relevant employability skills in young people and providing opportunity to develop industry engagement, which in turn further benefits the equine population. He is an External Examiner and Moderator for several Equine Awarding bodies and is involved in the development of the vocational Government T-Level land based qualifications and is looking forward to discussing industry focussed career readiness!