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A motorist has been fined for driving without due care and attention after fatally injuring a horse.

Bryony Donovan, 26, of Coopers Avenue, Heybridge, pleaded guilty to the charge at Colchester Magistrates’ Court on 5 April.

She was fined £260 and given five points on her licence, as well as being ordered to pay costs and a victim surcharge.

Last November, Donovan was driving along Lark Hill Road, Canewdon, when she collided with Laura Thorogood and her horse Angel (pictured, top).

Laura was taken to hospital for treatment and Angel was put down due to the severity of her injuries.

After the court case, Claire Lilly of Canewdons Equestrian, a group set up to improve road safety for riders after the accident, said the sentencing was “insulting”.

“Obviously consideration needs to be given with sentencing in different circumstances, but I feel a fine of £260 and few points on a licence is insulting given the fact that Laura incurred the costs of euthanasia of Angel in addition to losing her beautiful girl,” she told H&H.

“The emotional trauma inflicted on Laura is incomprehensible and heart-wrenching.”

Since the British Horse Society (BHS) launched its horse accidents website in 2010, 222 horses have died on our roads, with the majority of incidents occurring because the vehicle involved did not allow enough room between their car and the vehicle.

“Sadly [accidents] appears to be a recurring theme according to the collated statistics by the BHS,” added Ms Lilly.

“We expected at the very least a suspension, a re-test and a speed awareness course and a considerable fine.

“This case highlights further the importance of raising awareness for vulnerable road users — education in this area is long overdue.

“It is high time that the Highway Code is actually enforced and used as an effective deterrent.”