Grace joined us from the Metropolitan Police where she had been since the age of 4. After completing her training at Imber Court she went on to have a long and varied career. Some of her duties included escorting the military, marshalling sporting events, attending crime patrols and managing public disorder. She also participated in the more friendly side of policing including reassurance patrols and school visits.
A significant role in Grace’s career was acting as an escort to the late Queen Elizabeth II at every major event including Royal Weddings, State Visits and State Opening of Parliament for the last 10 years.
The charity PDSA (Peoples Dispensary for Sick Animals) awarded Grace with an Order of Merit for her long, exemplary career, giving unwavering devotion and outstanding service to society. This award is the animal version of an OBE.
Many other horses train for the role that Grace undertook but are found to be unsuitable. Grace was able to handle the extreme situations, most notedly the Gaza Demonstration in Kensington High Street in 2009, where barriers and other objects were thrown at the horses, the London Riots of 2011 and the violent disorder incidents at Millwall and Charlton, where there were flares landing at her feet. She was able to listen solely to her rider regardless of these environments, the intense noise or disturbances around her. Considering horses are flight animals, reacting in this way would have been tremendously challenging.
She has been described as the bravest, most reliable and loyal service animal anyone could ever wish for. We are so honoured to provide a comfortable home of rest for Grace in her much deserved retirement.
Profile photo credit: Christine Dunnington Photography