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Loose horse dies after being impaled on fence

A runaway mare has died after breaking free from her horsebox at a show and crashing into a fence.

The accident took place at Great Bookham Equestrian Centre (GBEC) in Surrey last Wednesday (7 May) during a dressage and showjumping competition.

“The horse became panicked when she broke a piece off the horsebox where she was resting,” said a spokesman from the centre. “In panic she subsequently broke through fencing on to the road and collided with a metal fence on Dorking Road.”

Staff were quick to pay tribute to the efforts of bystanders and vets, and later the police and fire service, but the injuries sustained proved fatal.

Firefighters from Surrey Fire and Rescue Service attended the scene to remove the horse’s body from the fence. It took them 2 hours, using 2 winches and animal rescue equipment. The horse — which firefighters said was owned by a “young girl” — had been declared dead before the fire crews arrived.

Staff posted on the GBEC Facebook page: “We are in a state of shock and grief after such a terrible accident resulting in a beautiful horse losing her life. Our hearts go out to the owner, who loved and cherished her horse dearly.”

Another horse was injured at the show in a separate incident, while being loaded into his horsebox, and was bleeding profusely. After a vet stitched the wound and applied a pressure bandage, he was kept at GBEC under observation until 1am, and was fit to return home the next morning.

The next show at the venue is on 21 May.

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