New powers used to rescue foal

Huckleberry at World Horse Welfare

Huckleberry at World Horse Welfare - Credit: Archant

A Norfolk horse welfare centre has taken in its first rescue case under new legislation which came into force earlier this year.

Huckleberry, a skewbald foal, was initially found tethered in the Red Lodge area of Suffolk along with another horse.

The pair appeared to have been abandoned and were causing problems in the local area, with Huckleberry only a few months old and far too young to be tethered.

Before action could be taken, the horses disappeared and by the time they were located again they had found their way onto the site of an old rubbish tip.

Huckleberry's young companion had died and his carcass had been left to decay in the field.

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Jacko Jackson, a World Horse Welfare field officer – working with Suffolk police and the RSPCA –advised the landowner that Huckleberry could be removed under the Control of Horses Act.

This gives landowners and local authorities greater powers to remove horses being grazed on land without permission, shortening the time period before ownership passes to the landowner from two weeks to just four days.

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World Horse Welfare agreed to take him into their care and he was transported to the charity's Norfolk Hall Farm Rescue and Rehoming Centre, at Snetterton, where Huckleberry is now beginning his rehabilitation.

Mr Jackson said: 'Huckleberry's case is an important demonstration of how effective the Control of Horses Act can be in helping quickly remove vulnerable horses to a safe and secure place. Given the tragic fate of his companion, Huckleberry was clearly at risk and the Control of Horses Act gave the landowner the necessary power to take swift action, which would have been a significantly longer process without the act in place.'

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