12 Very Special Horses Retire to The Horses Trust Home of Rest on Same Day

The Horse’s Trust Home of Rest welcomed nine horses from the Household Cavalry, two from the police and one from the Light Dragoons on the same day.

The first three to arrive at the sanctuary in Buckinghamshire were Household Cavalry horses Kilmanjaro, Jaipur and Harvester, retiring after 14, 13 and 11 years respectively.

Kilimanjaro, was accompanied by his previous rider who travelled with him on the eight hour round trip journey from Hyde Park barracks, his feelings for this horse being very apparent.

Six more from the regiment, Odin, Legolas, Knightsbridge, Kimberly, Iago and Incognito, arrived shortly afterwards.

Poppy, a 17.2hh Shire, arrived the same day, from the Lancashire Police mounted section, as did former Metropolitan Police horse Yachtsman, both of whom had retired due to lameness.

“Poppy took part in all types of police patrol work, from large football matches and events to Remembrance Day parades, which was very fitting as she was named Poppy after Armistice Day, the Platinum Jubilee parade in May 2022, leading a full military parade with a full band behind her, and much more,” said the spokesman.

“Yachtsman was described as a ‘completely and utterly lovable thug who can be boisterous and clumsy at times, and very kind, affectionate, inquisitive… with very little spatial awareness!’ according to a spokesman for the Metropolitan mounted branch.”

The last to arrive was Sky, 25, who had spent four and a half years with the Light Dragoons, as part of the regiment’s ceremonial team.

“Sky has been a massive part of the team here at the Light Dragoons and she has a group of wonderful supporting riders that love and adore her,” a spokesman for the regiment said. “At 25 there are clear signs that she is ageing, and we are grateful to be able to give her the dignified retirement that she deserves.”

The Horse Trust spokesman said it was an emotional day.

“There wasn’t a dry eye as the horses galloped together in new pastures, marking the beginning of their retirements,” he said. “We’re overjoyed to be able to provide these magnificent animals with a well-deserved rest, plenty of carrots and of course those highly adored neck scratches.”

Horse Trust chief executive Jeanette Allen added: “We’re thrilled to be able to provide a blissful retirement to this amazing group of equine public servants. We have lots of new personalities to get to know and that’s hugely exciting. These horses deserve their ease after a life of public service and we are truly honoured to be able to provide that for them all.”

Poppy in field.