Blood-soaked Household Cavalry horses loose in central London injuring people and hitting cars

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Four people have been taken to hospital after escaped Household Cavalry horses caused mayhem by galloping through the streets of central London.

A group of seven horses and six soldiers were on an extended exercise in Belgravia on Wednesday when chaos erupted after the animals were spooked by nearby building works.

Four riders were thrown from their horses and five of the animals got loose, smashing into vehicles while running down busy streets.

Pictures and videos showed the animals colliding with cars and smashing the windscreen of a bus, with blood staining the chest of one white horse.

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a776c0f4 9229 4799 9fa2 23d7d0becc67A horse colliding with a London taxi near Aldwych (PA)london%20horsesA blood-soaked horse seen in Shadwell, over three miles from Whitehall (@jhopwv/X)

The London Ambulance Service was called to three locations and treated four people in Buckingham Palace Road, Belgrave Square, and at the junction of Chancery Lane and Fleet Street, in the space of just 10 minutes.

The army confirmed that all the horses have since been recovered while a number of the animals as well as personnel are receiving medical attention.

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Tula, 28, a management consultant from south London who saw two of the horses galloping near Aldwych said the sight was “gruesome” and “like a weird dream”.

The pair were captured on a highway near Limehouse, more than eight kilometres (five miles) from where they first bolted.

He said: “I got off the 172 bus which ends at Aldwych and two horses went flying past. One black, one white.

“The white one was drenched in blood from the chest down and they were galloping through the traffic at speed.

“People were stopping in the street shocked. The horses were running into fast-moving traffic and seemed terrified. Some unmarked police cars were chasing after them, which didn’t seem to be helping.

“I felt shocked. It was pretty gruesome. Felt like a weird dream.”

A witness told The Telegraph that they had seen a soldier fall to the floor after one of the horses ran into a car, with bystanders screaming as the animal raced towards them.

01HW7MPW8D7YXG3XW1J2JC211B%20%281%29A horse splattered in blood seen running through the street (Jordan Pettitt/PA Wire)full

Bashir Aden, 48, a construction worker, said: “The man hit the floor hard, he was screaming in pain. You could see blood all over the parked car.

“The horses come down this route every day, but today the horse looked stressed or panicked. I saw the horse run away after it hit a bus. People were screaming and running all over.”

Buckingham Palace Road, where the drama began, was closed after the incident and a cordon put in place, with a blue tarpaulin tent put in place around the injured soldier.

The horses were eventually contained by the City of London Police, who caught them on the Highway near Limehouse and kept them until an army horse box transported them to veterinary care.

SEI201214720The damaged tour bus after a horse collided with its windscreen (Ben Cawthra/LNP)

Over the course of their rampage, the horses smashed into a silver Mercedes-Benz people carrier, causing damage to its side and rear windows, as well as damaging a double-decker bus.

LBC spoke to the driver of the Mercedes, Faraz, who was waiting outside the Clermont Hotel when he felt something smash into his car.

He said he saw three or four horses near the vehicle, and that one member of military personnel had been thrown off and injured.

01HW7JEEBSPHMV346CZHAF50SFTwo horses seen dashing through the streets of central London (Jordan Pettitt/PA Wire)6df4a344 6395 4dc5 81cf d45606978e75The horses were said to have become spooked during a training exercise in Whitehall (Jordan Pettitt/PA Wire)

Shortly before 11am, an army spokesperson said: “A number of military working horses became loose during routine exercise this morning. All of the horses have now been recovered and returned to camp.

“A number of personnel and horses have been injured and are receiving the appropriate medical attention.”

A London ambulance service spokesperson said: “We were called at 8:25am today [Wednesday] to reports of a person being thrown from a horse on Buckingham Palace Road.

“We sent resources to the scene including ambulance crews, a paramedic in a fast response car, and an incident response officer. Our first paramedic was on the scene in five minutes.”

In a video statement posted on X, commanding officer of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment Lieutenant Colonel Matt Woodward said the unit exercises around 150 horses on the roads and in parks every morning, partly to help desensitise them to city noise.

“This morning, however, a small group of horses were spooked by some construction works on a quiet side road in Belgravia where building materials were dropped from height right next to them. The ensuing shock caused all horses to bolt and unseated some riders,” he said.

After thanking the emergency services and the public for their help, he added: “Thankfully, considering the frequency of exercise and numbers of horses involved, this type of incident is extremely rare, we continue to strive to minimise the risk of this recurring.

“As ever we are grateful for due consideration given by the members of the public to not making loud noises around our horses.”

The animals are all receiving care from vets at Hyde Park barracks.

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