‘One of the bravest of them all’: Police horse retires to join old friends

  • A police horse who “served his community tirelessly” for 12 years has retired to live out his days in the countryside.

    Officers decided the time was right for Caton, who joined Lancashire Constabulary as a five-year-old in July 2006, to retire due to a combination of gastric ulcers and soundness issues.

    Sergeant Danielle Marsh, of Lancashire Constabulary’s mounted section, said Caton was “brave, fearless and happy to lead into any situation no matter what faced him”.

    “He is lovable and kind and loved having a scratch from his rider [Sgt Adam Pearson],” she added.

    “He liked nothing better than to roll in a clean bed of shavings and them shake them everywhere.”

    Caton arrived at the Horse Trust in Buckinghamshire on 2 April, where he was met by former colleagues Sawley, Silverdale and Belthorn.

    Horse Trust chief executive Jeanette Allen said the charity has been providing retirement and respite for the UK’s working horses and ponies for more than 130 years.

    “Nowadays that means the hard-working equine public servants who have served our nation or their community in the police, army or with a charity which uses horses to help people,” she said.

    Caton has worked hard for the people of Lancashire and we hope he can enjoy his retirement at our home of rest.

    “It is clear from his career that Caton was one of the bravest of them all.”

    The 16.3hh sports horse patrolled his first football match in October 2008, a premier league game between Blackburn and Manchester United.

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    As well as being an “obvious leader”, Caton is a talented jumper and showed off his skills at numerous public open days.

    He also served at Manchester City’s premier league title-winning match against QPR in 2012, the London 2012 Olympics and the 2016 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

    His ceremonial duties included Caribbean carnivals, Remembrance Sunday parades and memorial processions.

    He also helped to police demonstrations by the English Defence League and the British National Front.

    “Happy retirement, Caton, you truly deserve it,” added Sgt Marsh.

    For all the latest news analysis, competition reports, interviews, features and much more, don’t miss Horse & Hound magazine, on sale every Thursday.

    This week’s magazine (26 April), features a full Badminton preview, including a cross-country course walk with Mary King and full form guide for every horse and rider.

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