The McGaffin family have been saddlers and harness makers for four generations. Great Grandfather James, Grandfather John and my Father Stan.
My Father finished his apprenticeship in Banbridge Co Down in 1939. He then left Northern Ireland to join the army. Leaving the army in 1945 he stayed in the UK to work as a saddle maker. I joined him in 1963 becoming a qualified saddle maker in 1968. In 1975 I left for New Zealand having been offered a job by Allan McKenzie of AR McKenzie Belfast, Christchurch to teach an apprentice called Ray Morris. Ray later became one of the best saddle fitters in New Zealand as well as travelling to the USA and Australia. After eight years at McKenzie's I left to start Country Saddlers.
I was the first in New Zealand to take the Society of Master Saddlers saddle fitting course in the UK, regarded by the saddlery trade as the best in the world.
Price and Quality
Our aim for this website is to make it the best in New Zealand and to supply the best from entry level to the International rider. Price and quality are important to us and we will do our best to select items from here and overseas that meet your needs. Having worked in the UK I have met and discussed the needs of the riders in New Zealand with all my suppliers and with new items coming on stream every year we will keep you up to date with all of them.We work closely with other saddle fitters in Canterbury and we are happy for you to use them to fit our saddles.
My Father was a fluent Arabic speaker and his Irish temper wasn't too bad BUT when he started to speak Arabic it was time to leave the room!!
I was a professional footballer in the UK for a short time prior to becoming a saddler, pictured below is my silverware from those wonderful days.
Natalie Harris has been crazy about horses since she can remember having her first riding lesson at 5 years old. Her parents buckled and she got her first pony at 7 years old. Over the years she has been a member of Pony Club and then gone on to event and show jump. In recent years she has been breeding on a small scale and producing Sport horses and ponies particularly bred for temperament and train-ability. Still a member of Pony Club she now attends supporting her daughter.
With several years of Equestrian Retail experience Natalie will be available to assist with sales and product inquiries as well as assisting Stan with all aspects of the Stan McGaffin business.
The show room is on my property in West Eyreton. Natalie and I are happy to show you around but it is important to ring first to book a time.