A group of 5 fillies worth an estimated €1m (£830,000) have died after being electrocuted during Storm Darwin (13 February) in Ireland.

The yearlings were in a paddock at Kilfrush Stud, Knocklong, Co Limerick, when an electricity cable snapped and the current travelled through the ground, killing the horses instantly.

The alarm was raised by a member of staff, who went to check on the horses during the storm. The horses were checked 3 times daily.

One of the fillies — a daughter of New Approach — was purchased for the stud in November for €510,000 (£420,000).

Stud manager David Ryan, of Aran Bloodstock, said that while all the yearlings “had great potential”, the New Approach filly was a “rare commodity, which doesn’t come on to the market often”.

Mr Ryan bought the filly as breeding stock to build up a quality broodmare band for the stud’s Qatari owner, Mubarak al-Naemi. The 300-acre stud was purchased last summer for an undisclosed sum.