A Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) pony took a star turn in Somerset recently, when he pulled a rag-and-bone cart for a new BBC TV series.

Troy, a nine-year-old pony on permanent loan to the Somerset Levels RDA carriage-driving group, spent three hours pulling a cart up and down hills outside Shepton Mallet for an as-yet unnamed series due to air in November.

“He was a star — he’s probably one of our best horses,” said the group’s chairman, Bob Hose.

“Troy has done all sorts for us — musical rides, weddings, fund-raising for the group, Windsor horse show — so he is bombproof and didn’t put a foot wrong.”

The series tracks the changes in Shepton Mallet from Victorian times through to the 1960s.

Volunteers for the RDA group struck up conversation with the film-makers earlier this year and suggested Troy for a scene set in the 1940s, about a rag-and-bone man collecting scrap and items for the town’s war effort.

Troy’s owner, Bev Trout, lent her teenage son David for the role of rag-and-bone man and her original trade cart for the wartime scenes.

“The pair took to filming like Hollywood stars!” added Mr Hose.

This article was first published in Horse & Hound (2 September, ’10)