Thames Valley Police horse Titan on Wednesday arrived at The Horse Trust's sanctuary in Speen, Buckinghamshire where he will spend at least six months on respite.
Titan, a 18.3hh Shire-cross, weighs over a tonne, making him the largest police horse in the UK. He has been working for Thames Valley Police for the last nine years, carrying out vital police work across the Thames Valley area (Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire) as well as further afield, helping police forces that do not have a mounted division, such as Hampshire, Sussex and Bedfordshire Police.
16-year old Titan is coming to The Horse Trust for respite as he suffers from intermittent lameness caused by a condition called ringbone. If his condition does not improve after six months, he will be given lifetime sanctuary at The Horse Trust.
PC Tim Pollock, who has ridden Titan for the last six years, said he is one of the force's best horses.
"Titan is one of our top horses - he is very loyal and brave in all situations," said PC Pollock. "People are always astounded by his size and often come up to say hello. Despite his large size, he is remarkably agile and incredibly sure-footed. It was like he was made to be a police horse!"
"I was sad to see Titan leaving to go to The Horse Trust. We've been through a lot together over the last six years and have always looked after each other," added PC Pollock.
Titan has been involved in a wide variety of police work during his time with the Thames Valley Police including the following:
• Crowd control at football matches for numerous teams including Reading, MK Dons, Wycombe Wanderers, Portsmouth, Southampton and Luton Town. He is regularly used for crowd control for local derbies and also for major events, such as the 2004 FA Cup final between Manchester United and Millwall at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.
• Providing a police escort to heads of state visiting the Queen at Windsor Castle, including President Bush and Jacques Chirac.
• Providing a police escort for the Queen at Royal Ascot
• Crowd control at the Labour Party Conference and Gay Pride march in Brighton
• Crowd control at recent student tuition fees demonstrations in Wycombe and Oxford
• Night club patrols at various town centres including Oxford, Aylesbury and Reading
• Crowd control at concerts at the Milton Keynes Bowl, including Take That and Oasis
• Crowd control at English Defence League demos, including demos at Luton, Brighton and Cardiff
On Wednesday, Titan made the 35-mile journey from the Thames Valley Police stables at Witan Gate, Milton Keynes to The Horse Trust's sanctuary in Speen, Buckinghamshire.
According to Shirley Abbott, Yard Manager at The Horse Trust, the journey and new surroundings didn't phase Titan. "Titan settled in straight away in a paddock at The Horse Trust. All the staff have already fallen in love with him as he's such a handsome and impressive chap," said Shirley.
Titan will remain in quarantine for a few days, but will then be reunited with his former Thames Valley Police horse friends Iceni and Dexter, who retired to The Horse Trust three and five years ago respectively.
The Horse Trust depends on the support of the public to look after retired working horses such as Titan. It costs the charity an average of
£10 per day to look after each horse at the sanctuary, which includes the costs of grooms, forage, farriery and veterinary care. To donate to The Horse Trust, please visit www.horsetrust.org.uk
, or contact the charity on 01494 488 464 or email@example.com