Hammersmith police horse has happy retirement

Vincent and Ursula will happily horse around for their retirement

Vincent and Ursula nuzzle up

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Two happy horses are due to enjoy a long retirement together after serving a total of more than 30 years in the Metropolitan Police Mounted Branch.

A Hammersmith police horse who has fallen for a Mounted branch gelding is to be allowed to enjoy some horse-play during her retirement.

Veteran police horses Vincent and Ursula were stabled together at the Mounted Training Establishment to be used on training courses.

Although originally from Yorkshire, Urusula, 21, has also lived at the police stables in Hammersmith, and has been used by Mounted Officers for major events, including the Queen's Birthday Parade, the Lord's Mayor's Show and Trooping the Colour.

Ursula has been with the Met Police since 1992.

Following her training at the Mounted Training Establishment, she worked at Rochester Row stable where she regularly patrolled ceremonial events in London.

She then moved to Hammersmith stable.

While working as a training horse, Ursula met Vincent, 22, a star of the Met's display show Activity Ride. He is one of only two horses who break through the paper hoop, and he has jumped through the hoop of fire over 200 times.

Now the two horses will retire to the same farm in Sussex, where they will be ridden occasionally, go for walks and be looked after together.

Inspector Alan Hiscox, chief instructor at the Mounted Branch, said: "Vincent and Ursula have served in the Metropolitan Police for over 30 years in total, that's a very long time in horse years. They have contributed to every aspect of policing in the Mounted Branch, from frontline patrols and ceremonial duties, right through to training our younger horses and new officers.

"I have had the honour of riding both Vincent and Ursula, they are very special horses. It has been very heartening to see them grow close and they deserve to enjoy many long and happy years of retirement."



May 7, 2009