Thames Valley Police urge horse owners to mark tack to help fight tack theft

Thames Valley Police are urging horse owners to take precautions to protect their tack – particularly when they are on holiday or away from the country.

The warning follows the theft of a valuable saddle belonging to freelance instructor, Joanna Herrmann, who has just returned to the UK from America.

Just hours after collecting her horse from Heathrow, she discovered her distinctive tack was among items stolen from a farm at Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire.

Crime Reduction Officer for Henley, DC Charlie Cameron, said: “All expensive equipment should be photographed to aid recovery and all equipment should be individually marked.

“Saddles should be engraved or indented. A new system called Datatag is now in operation in which a chip is injected into the saddle. Most markets will scan saddles that have been passed to them forsale.

“Tack rooms should be as secure as possible. They should be fitted with locks, be well-lit and if possible have a security alarm.”

Joanna’s tack included a distinctive Beval 16.5 in, close contact, flat-seated havana saddle and an American havana leather padded girth.

Anyone with information should contact Thames Valley Police (tel: 01189 536372).