Verity Smith, Dressage rider in training for the Paralympics in Rio
Verity Smith, is also an Author, Singer, Inspirational speaker and campaigner for the disabled
Verity is a blind international dressage rider, singer, songwriter and author. She believes in advocating the ability in disability and relishes the challenge of defying convention and breaking down boundaries.
She has represented Great Britain as part of Para Team GB, and is currently competing at Prix St George dressage level and her dream is to one day be on the Able Bodied Olympic GB Team.
Verity Smith was born with perfect sight but at age 8 her vision deteriorated until she was registered blind at age 16. Her determination and enthusiasm has never allowed her to compromise in what she wishes to achieve. Whether she is riding dressage at International level, working on her books, creating and recording her music or arguing the case for both disabled and sighted counterparts Verity defies convention. Verity's outlook and humour welcomes you into a world of incredible achievement and possibility.
Book Verity Smith to inspire, encourage and enthuse your audience
Verity Smith, an absolute inspiration
Verity Smith has a passion for horses and a talent for dressage. She has been riding since she was 3 and competing since she was 5. When she was told, at age 8 that she would go blind and not be able to drive a car, her response was that it was O.K., she rode and the horse could see for her! Her only concession was at 15 a switch from show jumping to dressage; the arena allowing her to work within a defined space on equal terms with sighted competitors. Having represented her country as a member of Para Team G.B. but having had her hopes of qualifying for the 2012 London Games dashed due to the death of her competition horse in 2011 and a subsequent car crash, Verity was momentarily unseated but showing great determination and resilience she is now back in the saddle.
Verity Smith has been interviewed by a number of newspapers, magazines and television and radio stations. She has featured in CNN International Human to Hero World Sports Series,which won Gold at the 2015 New York Festivals Film & Television
Awards in the Human Interest Story in Television News.
A documentary is being made which will follow Verity’s journey with emphasis on changing perceptions. This is not a ‘fly on the
wall’ , but a film documentary.
Verity Smith is also an accomplished singer / songwriter whose unique voice, melodies and lyrics illuminate the light and beauty of the darkest corners of our hearts. Her talent has led to her collaboration with, amongst others:
Sacha Skarbek (Ivor Novello Award Winner), Paul Herman (writer for Dido and Faithless) and Craig Armstrong (Oscar winner). Verity premiered her forthcoming album La Verity at the South Bank London in December 2013.
But incredibly, this is only part of the story.
Amongst all this Verity has also found time to write her autobiography The Groper’s Guide - a humorous, poignant insight into Verity’s unsighted world in which, like Alice in Wonderland, things have the habit of becoming "curiouser and curiouser".
Verity is always pushing boundaries. Amongst other things she has successfully campaigned to allow Guide Dogs to travel on planes and on Eurostar, and for Braille to be included on vending machines.
Verity is an inspiration to all who meet her and her tireless enthusiasm is contagious.
Truly remarkable, natural flair for motivating, without hesitation I would recommend Verity as an outstanding inspirational speaker."
Alexander Hagen | Managing Director | Ariat Europe Limited
Verity Smith presented an inspiring and motivational keynote at The PA Show 2016 highlighting the ability in disability. Taking the audience on her journey Verity both moved and enthralled visitors with her antics and anecdotes and left them with no doubt that you can and you will succeed through hard work and determination. Seeing the world through Verity’s eyes opens up minds to realm of possibilities.
Ingrid van der Weide, Event Manager, Mash Media.
"Verity is an inspirational athlete and speaker. Her journey has been difficult but she remains positive and lifts an audience with her energy and optimism. She was great"
David Haigh, Chief Executive, Brand Exchange, London
Verity’s talk was interesting and inspiring, filled with amusing stories and a whole lot of humour. I walked away wanting to face the challenges in my life with the same courage and spirit as Verity.
Olivia Cook, Arup Consulting, UK
“A truly inspirational and eye opening speech, the whole audience were transfixed throughout. Incredibly funny at times but Verity’s humility, strength and determination shone through leaving everyone feeling very humble yet extremely motivated. Uffa was a star too.”
Darren Stones, NFC Group
Darren Stones New Forest Communications Ltd
Verity demonstrated a great empathy with her audience providing an entertaining, passionate and inspiring talk interspersed with humour whilst still getting across the importance of following her dream and also in helping others.
Anne Marks , Chairman London PA Network