A pony that fell more than 50 feet down a cliff in west Wales has been saved by lifeboat crews – in a dramatic rescue captured on film.
It’s thought that the little grey mare had been trapped for up to four days when the two Cardigan lifeboats went to her aid yesterday morning (15 January).
The pony was stuck on a tiny gravel beach in a gully at the bottom of steep cliffs in Ceibwr, Pembrokeshire.
Simon Mansfield from Cardigan Lifeboat told H&H they were called out at about 10am.
“Quite how she had got down there, nobody knows,” he said.
“She was completely trapped – the only way out was by sea. A helicopter rescue was unthinkable, it would have been far too difficult.”
Mr Mansfield and his colleagues took their smallest lifeboat as close as possible into the narrow gully, with the intention of putting a halter on the pony and swimming her out alongside the boat.
“Surprisingly she was in fine fettle, with no broken bones,” said Mr Mansfield.
“But she was absolutely petrified – I don’t think she’d been handled before and even on that small patch of beach, she gave us a run for her money.”
Once the halter was on, the pony swam alongside the boat “quite happily”.
But as they got to the shore, the rope on her halter snapped and the pony took off.
Mr Mansfield – who filmed the entire rescue on a head camera – managed to grab her, and was dragged across the beach.
They got her into an RSPCA horsebox and she was taken away for treatment.
The pony has now been returned to her owner.
Mr Mansfield told H&H the rescue was a first for him.
“We tend to rescue a fair few sheep off the cliffs and we had to free a porpoise from a net once – but this is our first horse.”