Twenty-seven Army horses are taking a break from their London ceremonial duties with a holiday in Blackpool.

The Left Section of the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery is spending the week relaxing on the beach and swimming in the sea.

Section commander captain Kathrine Monk said the horses enjoy a break every year.

She said: “They absolutely love it. The best bit is letting the horses go swimming in the sea and gallop on the sand, but they also go out hacking in the countryside and some are put out to grass.”

The horses — and 31 accompanying humans — are staying at Penny Farm, which belongs to the International League for the Protection of Horses (ILPH).

Penny Farm centre manager Tony Fleming is himself a former member of the King’s Troop. He said one of the horses currently holidaying at the centre from the Left Section, a nine-year-old Irish Draft called Penny, was once rescued by the ILPH and nursed back from an emaciated condition at Penny Farm.

Tony said: “Penny loves being back here and being on the beach. You can tell that she knows where she is.”