Tilly's Pony Tails

Last updated

Tilly’s Pony Tails is a series of children’s books, published by Orion Children’s Books in the United Kingdom. The series was created by equestrian sportswoman Pippa Funnell.



The first two books in the series, Magic Spirit and Red Admiral, were first published in May 2009. The series has now been extended to eighteen titles in all. The first four titles have also been recorded as unabridged audiobooks, read by sports presenter Clare Balding.


The central character, Tilly Redbrow, is an adopted child, who is passionate about everything to do with horses and ponies. In the first book in the series, Magic Spirit, Tilly helps rescue a neglected horse called Magic Spirit. She discovers that she has a special gift for communicating with horses. When she helps Magic Spirit, Tilly meets Angela, who owns a stables called Silver Shoe Farm. Angela invites Tilly to spend time at Silver Shoe Farm, learning about riding, training and caring for horses. Tilly soon makes friends at the stables and spends all her free time there. Each title in the series tells a new story about Tilly’s adventures with horses and ponies that she comes into contact with, as well as her continuing relationship with Magic Spirit. The series is also linked with a continuing story about Tilly’s background and birth, the only clue to which is a bracelet made of horsehair. As well as the fictional story, each title also contains a tips section with expert advice from Pippa Funnell on all aspects of horses and ponies.


Pippa Funnell, MBE, is a leading equestrian sportswoman in three-day eventing. In 2003 she became the first person and currently the only person to win eventing's greatest prize, the Rolex Grand Slam of eventing (consecutive wins at Kentucky, Badminton Horse Trials and Burghley Horse Trials). As part of the British team, she won a silver medal in the 2000 Sydney Olympics, a bronze medal at the 2002 World Equestrian Games and silver again at the 2004 Athens Olympics. Pippa Funnell is a trustee of the horse charity, World Horse Welfare, and the work of the charity features throughout the Tilly's Pony Tails books.




(read by Clare Balding)

Special editions

Related Research Articles

Hand (unit) Unit of length

The hand is a non-SI unit of measurement of length standardized to 4 in (101.6 mm). It is used to measure the height of horses in many English-speaking countries, including Australia, Canada, the Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom, and the United States. It was originally based on the breadth of a human hand. The adoption of the international inch in 1959 allowed for a standardized imperial form and a metric conversion. It may be abbreviated to "h" or "hh". Although measurements between whole hands are usually expressed in what appears to be decimal format, the subdivision of the hand is not decimal but is in base 4, so subdivisions after the radix point are in quarters of a hand, which are inches. Thus, 62 inches is fifteen and a half hands, or 15.2 hh.

Pippa Funnell British equestrian

Philippa Rachel "Pippa" Funnell MBE is an equestrian sportswoman who competes in eventing. In 2003, she became the first person to win the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing. She also won Badminton in 2002 and 2005. At the European Championships, she has won two Individual golds (1999–2001) and three team golds (1999–2003). She is a three-time Olympic medallist, winning team silver in 2000 and 2004, and an individual bronze in 2004. She also competed at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

Karen OConnor American equestrian

Karen Lende O'Connor is an American equestrian who competes in three-day eventing. Although she did not come from a family of equestrians, her interest in horses started at an early age, and she received her first horse for her 11th birthday. O'Connor began competing internationally in the late 1970s, and in 1986 began riding for the US national eventing team. Since then, she had ridden in five Olympic Games, three World Equestrian Games and two Pan-American Games, winning multiple medals, including a team silver at the 1996 Olympic Games and a team bronze at the 2000 Olympic Games. She has also posted numerous wins and top-10 finishes at other international events. As of 2013, O'Connor is not competing, having suffered fractures to two thoracic vertebrae during a fall at a competition in October 2012.

Mary Berrisford was a British writer of children's pony stories which are very similar to those of the Pullein-Thompson sisters, as well as other animal story and books on gardening. She was born in Staffordshire in 1912. She also wrote under the name Amanda Hope.

The Saddle Club is a series of intermediate children's books published by Bantam Books between 1988 and 2001. The series was created by a publishing house using the contract writing services of self-professed equestrian novice Bonnie Bryant. Many titles were also written by ghostwriters. Spin-offs include four other book series: The Saddle Club Super Editions, The Saddle Club Inside Stories, Pony Tails, and Pine Hollow. The books were adapted into a TV show also called The Saddle Club. In the 1990s, there was also a fan club with a monthly newsletter and a line of model horses manufactured by Breyer.

My Secret Unicorn is a series of children's books written by Linda Chapman. The series was first published between 2002 and 2007. The books feature the adventures of Lauren and her unicorn, Twilight, and their friends. Chapman got the inspiration for the series while nannying for a pony-mad seven-year-old in 1994, and in 1998 started writing for Working Partners Ltd. Since then she has had over a hundred books published under various pseudonyms and under her own name.


Horsez is a video game released by Ubisoft on October 26, 2006, for the Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2, PC and Game Boy Advance. This PC game is the sequel to Champion Dreams: First to Ride and is also part of the second series of Petz. The user plays as Flora, a new member of the Sycamore Academy. Players select a horse from one of five breeds and a range of colours. The player trains their horse in different disciplines, enters shows, cares for the horse, and after a few weeks gains a foal to raise.

Toytown (horse) Horse

Toytown was a British event horse owned and ridden by Zara Phillips.

Beezie Madden American equestrian

Elizabeth Madden is an American Olympic champion equestrian competing in show jumping. She has two Olympic golds and one silver in team jumping, and an individual bronze. She won the FEI Show Jumping World Cup twice; won two silvers and two bronzes at World Championships; and won two golds, one silver and two bronzes at the Pan American Games. She was the first American to break into the international top three show jumping ranking, and the first woman to win over one million dollars in show jumping prize money.

The British Jumping Derby meeting – known as the Al Shira'aa Hickstead Derby Meeting – is an annual showjumping event held since 1961 at the Hickstead in June every year. It is considered one of the premier events in the equestrian calendar.

<i>Pippa Funnell: Take the Reins</i>

Pippa Funnell 2: Take the Reins is a horse riding simulation game developed by French studio Lexis Numerique and released by Ubisoft on October 27, 2006 for the PlayStation 2 and Windows. The player takes the role of Jade as she attends the Sycamore Riding School in Scotland. Throughout the game, the player is able to train, care for, and compete with their horse while interacting with the other students in the Academy, and solving a mystery.

Nicola Wilson British equestrian

Nicola Wilson is a British equestrian rider specialising in three-day eventing. Riding Opposition Buzz, she won a team gold at the 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games and team silver at the 2012 Olympic Games. She is also a five-time medallist at the European Championships, including team golds in 2009 and 2017, and individual bronze in 2017.

My Little Pony: Equestria Girls

My Little Pony: Equestria Girls, or simply known as Equestria Girls, is a product line of fashion dolls and media franchise launched in 2013 by American toy company Hasbro, as a spin-off of the 2010 relaunch of the My Little Pony franchise and its Friendship Is Magic television series. Equestria Girls features anthropomorphized versions of My Little Pony characters from that period. It includes various doll lines, media tie-ins and licensed merchandise.

Primmore's Pride is a 7/8 Thoroughbred gelding. He was foaled in 1993, the offspring of Mayhill (sire) and Primmore Hill (dam). He is owned by Denise & Roger Lincoln and ridden by Pippa Funnell, who achieved the Grand Slam of eventing in 2003 by winning the Rolex Kentucky Three Day, Badminton Horse Trials, and Burghley Horse Trials while riding Primmore's Pride.

Equestria Fictional principality populated with talking ponies

Equestria is the fictional setting of the fourth and upcoming fifth generation of the My Little Pony toyline and media franchise, including the animated television series My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic and My Little Pony: Pony Life. Created by Lauren Faust, the setting incorporates many elements of fantasy, including European and Greek mythology.

Twilight Sparkle Fictional character from the fourth generation of My Little Pony

Princess Twilight Sparkle, commonly known as Twilight Sparkle, is a fictional character who appears in the fourth incarnation of Hasbro's My Little Pony toyline and media franchise, beginning with My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic (2010–2019). Her voice is provided by Canadian-American actress Tara Strong while her singing voice is provided by Canadian actress and singer Rebecca Shoichet.

International Jumping Riders Club

International Jumping Riders Club is a non-profit organization that represent equestrian athletes.

Laura Collett is a British equestrian who competes in eventing.