A horse rescued from the country’s worst recorded case of equine neglect is set to patrol south Norfolk’s streets as part of a rural crime prevention initiative.

Special Constable Nicola Rix will be patrolling rural areas with six-year-old Bert just four years after he was among 100 horses, ponies and donkeys removed from Spindle Farm in Amersham, Buckinghamshire in 2008 by the RSPCA, Redwings Horse Sanctuary and other welfare charities after 30 horses were found dead and many more suffering from severe neglect. Bert was one of 65 offered a home at Redwings Horse Sanctuary in Norfolk.

Following his rescue and recovery, Bert was ready to be re-homed through the Redwings Guardianship scheme, and he is now preparing to patrol South Norfolk’s streets.

The duo are part of a pilot scheme to tackle rural crime in the area following the success of a similar project in Hertfordshire, with four Special Constables and their horses patrolling rural areas.

The specials on horseback will be used as part of Norfolk police’sOperation Randall which was set up to drive down rural crime.

Temporary Chief Supt Nick Dean, who leads the operation, said: “The scheme will make a real difference as the Specials on horseback will offer a visible and reassuring presence in the local communities where they will be patrolling.”

Special Contable Rix added: “I am so, so proud of Bert. His turnaround is remarkable and to be able to serve the community as a Special Constable- and to have Bert with me– is fantastic.”

Redwings provides sanctuary to 1200 horses, ponies and donkeys, with a further 500 in Guardian ownership.


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