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Remus, the longest serving horse in the British Army passes away peacefully at The Horse Trust

The previously longest serving and oldest horse in the British Army has peacefully passed away in retirement at The Horse Trust, where we have been providing retirement and respite for military and other working horses since we were founded in the 19th Century.

As we approach the centenary of the commencement of World War One next year, The Horse Trust remembers all of our nation’s past and present military working horses. Today, many horses from the British Army enjoy a well-deserved retirement in the rolling hills of the Chiltern countryside after a lifetime of service.  Remus, a truly remarkable horse, began his service in 1991 as a four year old and served for an incredible twenty one years until 2012 when, at the grand age of twenty six, he retired to The Horse Trust. Remus, fondly known in the army as Reg, started as a Troop horse in the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, and latterly as an Officer’s Charger of the Household Division. Despite being 16hh (and half an inch!) and the smallest charger when he retired, ‘feisty’ Remus had the biggest personality by far! Officers were warned to ‘approach with caution’ as Remus is well known for being stubborn and a bit tricky to handle.  When it was time for Remus to retire, the army scanned his micro-chip to double check it was him as he looked so amazing for his age!

Although everyone was careful to never take him for granted, Remus did mellow in his retirement and was loved by everyone, particularly by his groom Carly. As is the case with many older horses, Remus suffered with chronic arthritis which had become worse and recently he had been struggling to move without pain. Vets and staff at The Horse Trust made the difficult decision that it would be kinder to say farewell to this special horse before the cold of winter further affected his joints. Sadly, in the same week, we also said goodbye to one of our most popular residents whose coffin joint arthritis had deteriorated in recent weeks. Our Chester was an eventing horse before he joined the army in 1994 where he became the Riding Master’s Charger at The Household Cavalry Mounted Section. It was said that riding Chester was like sitting in the middle of a very comfortable sofa! His rider, former Riding Master of The Household Cavalry, Sandy Sanderson said ‘Our Chester was my charger for most of his career; he was a brilliant horse and a true gentleman. The Horse Trust has a strong bond with The Household Cavalry Mounted Section and it is wonderful to know that so many horses can retire there to the peaceful countryside’.

The Horse Trust has a long history of working alongside the British Army. During the First World War, we provided the first ever motorised horse ambulance to help transport wounded horses from the front line in France. The ambulance travelled 13,000 miles in just 2 years and carried over 1,000 horses to veterinary hospitals where they could be treated. The War Office commissioned more and by the end of the war fourteen of these vehicles were in operation in France, saving many thousands of horse’s lives. After the war, The Horse Trust retired horses that had served on the front line and today this work continues as military horses come to the beautiful Chiltern countryside for their retirement.

The Horse Trust is proud of its relationship with the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment and providing horses like Remus and Our Chester with a home in their retirement after a lifetime of service is a privilege.  After working hard, these horses are given the opportunity to relax entirely, and return to a life of just being a horse. The Horse Trust relies entirely on donations to fund its work. If you would like to donate please click here or call the office on 01494 488464.

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