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Philip (Pip) Archer has had over 40 years of experience in the saddlery industry. he and his wife Jil Bourton established a successful manufacturing saddlery business in Mount Barker in Adelaide Hills in 1976. This was sold in 1990 and Philip then developed a horse rug manufacturing business specialising in made to measure canvas rugs. At the same time, he and Jil developed the saddle pads which have become the backbone of their business.
Philip was a competitive Endurance rider for many years until family commitments sidetracked him into Go Karts and Marathon Kayaking. He and Jil run a 40-hectare horse stud at Murray Bridge in South Australia.
Jill Bourton has been an enthusiastic equestrienne since the age of nine, leased her first horse, a part Arabian at ten and over the years competed in just about every form of equestrian activity. It seemed she had a natural ability which was probably inherited from her English ancestor, a very talented horseman, who settled in the Swan Valley in the 1800s.
Jil met Philip in the 1970s and it wasn’t long before she had him riding horses with her.
Jil discovered endurance riding in the early ’80s and by the end of that decade Philip was also involved in the sport and they gained their first Quilty buckles together in 1990.
Since then Jil has ridden almost 25,000 km on many horses - the majority which they have bred. Along the way, Jil learnt leatherwork from Philip and later harness making at night class. Jil had always endeavoured to make most of her own gear.
The creation of their Archer saddle pads came from a need to steer away from a “bound” saddle blanket that in Jil's experience wasn’t suited to the longer distance rides.
Since then the product has gained much kudos internationally as well as here in Oz. Jil and Pip are proud to say they are Australian made and owned, manufactured in South Australia of wholly Australian Materials.