The Suffolk Punch, which is also called the Suffolk horse, is a draught horse breed that originated from Suffolk, hence it’s name. It is the oldest heavy horse breed in Britain, dating back to the early 16th century. All Suffolks currently alive can be traced back to a single stallion, Crisp’s Horse of Ufford, who was foaled in 1768.
Suffolk horses are always a shade of chestnut with no white and are unusual among British heavy horses as they have no feather on their legs. This enabled them to work the heavy ground of their native East Anglia without becoming weighed down by the mud. Used extensively in farming prior to the industrial revolutions, the breed’s numbers plummeted when horses were no longer required to work the land and the breed neared extinction. The Suffolk horse is currently described as ‘critical’ on the Rare Breed Survial Trust’s watchlist, which means there are less than 300 adult breeding females registered with the breed’s studbook.