As Remembrance Sunday approaches, The Horse Trust has taken a look back at nearly 100 years of helping horses in areas of conflict.
Originally founded in 1886 to help the working horses of London, the charity did not concentrate its efforts on war horses until the outbreak of WW1 in 1914.
The same year, The Horse Trust provided the first ever motorised horse ambulance, allowing injured horses to be transported quickly off the front line to safe areas for rehabilitation.
The ambulance was a huge success, travelling around 13,000 miles and carrying over 1,000 wounded horses in just 2 years. By the end of the war, there were 14 equine ambulances operating, in which over 2 million horses were successfully treated and returned to duty.
At the end of WW1, The Horse Trust expanded further in order to accommodate retired war horses who needed a home.
The Horse Trust is still the primary home for horses who have served with the British armed forces.
“Currently The Horse Trust is home to horses who have served in the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, The Kings Troop, The Light Cavalry HAC and The Royal Mews,” said a spokesman from the charity.
“Commando retired from The Blues and Royals of The Household Cavalry in August 2012.
“He is one of the few horses that has participated in the Royal Wedding, both Golden and Diamond Jubilee parades and has also been a Standard Bearer and an Officer’s Charger.
“Army horses work hard serving our country for many years. The Horse Trust is honoured to provide a place of rest for horses like Commando when they retire from service.”
Over 8 million horses were killed in WW1 alone, with only 60,000 of the 1.2 million British horses sent to France returning to home soil.
To find out more about the work The Horse Trust undertakes visit: www.horsetrust.org.uk