Firefighters rescue Shire horse trapped between two houses

  • A Shire horse who became trapped along a narrow path between two houses has been rescued by firefighters.

    The gelding escaped from his field in Curbridge, near Witney in Oxfordshire last Saturday (30 September).

    Firefighters from Witney and Kidlington were called to assist the horse at 11.50pm.

    “A large Shire horse had wandered from a field down a small path between two stone houses,” said incident commander Graham Turner of Oxfordshire County Council Fire and Rescue Service.

    “Unfortunately the path narrowed, but as the animal’s natural instinct was to continue walking forward he had pushed on until he became completely stuck towards the front of the houses.

    “We believe he had been there for a couple of hours before anybody noticed him and called us.”

    Crews were carrying dedicated horse and animal rescue equipment, but as the Shire was so large and stuck so tightly, accessing and attaching equipment without injuring him proved difficult.

    It was extremely difficult and removing any stone at all would have made the houses structurally unsafe,” said Mr Turner.

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    “Eventually we managed to get some strops around him and with a number of firefighters pulling on them from behind and others pushing the horse from the front, coupled with some words of encouragement by everybody present, we finally managed to move the horse slowly backwards.”

    The horse was edged backwards approximately 30 feet in order to free him from his temporary prison before being reunited with his owner without any injuries. He was returned safely to his field after the rescue, which took around an hour.

    “We carry a wide range of equipment for all types of rescues and although the equipment played a part, on this occasion the rescue was ultimately down to the ingenuity and determination of the fire fighters, combined with good old fashioned brute force and horsepower,” added Mr Turner.

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