Seeconnell Saddlery Workshop is a one woman business, but thankfully friends and family are often at hand to help.

My name is Marian and grew up with horses and ponies, torturing my parents to take me to riding lessons.

This early love of horses led to my decision to go down the saddlery route.

I started in 2008 by joining the Millennium Apprenticeship scheme with the Society Of Master Saddlers. This was where I completed exams in Bridle making Saddle & Harness Making to level 3 City & Guilds.

I was lucky enough to train in County Armagh with David of Annaghmore Saddlery and then complete my exams at The Saddlery Training Centre in Salisbury with Mark Romain.

About 2014/15 I got the fantastic chance to convert an old farm building in rural County Down into the fabulous workshop that stands today.

With that space I could fulfill a niche in the market of providing a professional laundry service to the South Down area.

Many horse owners like myself used conventional launderettes to wash their rugs, what I didn’t know was that they used normal washing powder which I now know is a big no no for turnout rugs, and horrifyingly the dreaded tumble dryer, I always wondered why my ponys rugs were smaller although he was way past the growing stage.

My other passion in life are my dogs and exploring the amazing landscapes of Ireland and Scotland. So much so that last year I branched out into making luxury dog collars with Harris Tweed.

You can check out this little business venture at Solas Irish Craft