UNRULY teenagers will be encouraged to horse around to improve their behaviour.

Equine instructors Jackie Evans and Sharon Crabbe, from Nailsworth, are undergoing training to deliver a horse-assisted behaviour course to young people in Gloucestershire.

The horse course uses the animals to help troubled schoolchildren and Jackie and Sharon are expecting to be fully endorsed by early spring.

The course, set up by Harriet Laurie, has been piloted in Dorset prisons and has proved successful at significantly reducing disciplinary hearings.

Jackie, a professional Parelli instructor, said: “Our plan is to take the course to schools and pupil referral units to reach children early on and potentially help them to avoid getting into the criminal justice system in the first place.

“We are then hoping to visit young offender institutes and prisons.

“We understand first hand the power of engaging with horses in this way and how effective it is as a tool for self development.

“The horses are totally authentic and non-judgemental and troubled young people are able to respond to this in a positive way.”