Police are seeking four youths who were caught on CCTV riding through Newcastle city centre.

Officers are trying to identify the quartet so “suitable words of advice can be given”.

The youngsters were spotted riding from Newcastle Quayside, along Dean Street and on to the busy shopping area of Northumberland Street on 15 October.

City centre neighbourhood Inspector Steve Wykes warned the riders put themselves and members of the public at risk.

“These individuals may be competent riders but the city centre is no place to take a horse, particularly one of the region’s busiest high streets,” he said.

“On Sunday afternoon it was full of shoppers, including families with young children, and someone could easily have been hurt.

“None of those riding the horses were wearing safety equipment and if the horses were to be startled by traffic, a dog or a member of the public then these children could have hurt themselves.”

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He added the force’s police horses often patrol the city centre, but have “extensive training” to police busy areas.

“We are still working to identify these children so we can speak to them about bringing horses into Newcastle and anyone who may know who they are should call us,” added Inspector Wykes.

Councillor Nick Kemp, chairman of community safety partnership Safe Newcastle added it would be very easy for one of these horses to be frightened and put people at risk.

“Northumberland Street is one of the busiest in the city, packed with shoppers, families and young children, it is important that it has a safe and friendly environment,” he said.

“If anyone has any information about this incident we would urge them to contact Northumbria Police.”

Anyone with information is urged to call police on 101, quoting reference 835 131017.

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