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Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

Pony rescued by firefighters qualifies for top show

24/07/2017

L-R: Hattie riding Razz, Crew Manager Gary Lea, firefighter Paul Mace, Hattie and Razz’s trainer Julie Judge, firefighters Ant Ball and Phil Furey
L-R: Hattie riding Razz, Crew Manager Gary Lea, firefighter Paul Mace, Hattie and Razz’s trainer Julie Judge, firefighters Ant Ball and Phil Furey

Firefighters at Leek Community Fire Station were paid a special visit recently.

“We will always be forever grateful and eternally thankful for the amazing job the fire service did that day rescuing Razz. You have all paid a very big part of helping to make Hattie's dream of qualifying for Horse of the Year show come true.”

Mrs Sally Beal

Hattie Beal, aged 17, and her nine-year-old Highland pony Razz visited crews to say thank you after qualifying for a prestigious national show, some 18 months after firefighters rescued Razz from a life-threatening situation.

Hattie and Razz recently came first in the Junior Large Breeds Mountain and Moorland class at the Royal Cheshire Show, beating 36 other competitors, as well as being selected as Reserve Champions. This qualified them for Horse of the Year Show 2017, where they will compete against the top 16 ponies from around the country.

Hattie’s mother, Mrs Sally Beal, visited the station with Hattie and Razz, to thank crews for rescuing Razz when he became stuck in a cattle grid last winter. Without Razz Hattie’s dream of getting into the Horse of the Year show wouldn’t have come true. 

Razz escaped from his field at a farm in Quarnford, near Flash, during a snow storm last winter.

Hattie, who was just 16 at the time, found her pony trapped in a cattle grid. She struggled on her own to try to free Razz for around 20 minutes before fetching neighbours to help. However, after their attempts were unsuccessful Hattie alerted her mum who called for the vet and the fire service.

Due to the treacherous snowy roads the service sent a 4x4 vehicle first, followed by three fire appliances once a snow plough had cleared the route.

Crew Manager Gary Lea said: “Around a dozen crew members were at the scene, working in a snow blizzard was certainly interesting and the snow made work to free Razz more difficult.

"When we arrived the pony was quite distressed but the vet, Caroline Bramhall of Agnew Equine, thankfully managed to sedate him to calm him and this allowed us to work to get him out safely.

"We used specialist animal rescue equipment which we have on board one of our fire engines and thankfully we were able to free Razz from the grid without serious injury. Fortunately, he was able to make a full recovery.

“We were pleasantly surprised when Hattie and Razz came to visit us at the station, I don’t think we’ve ever had a pony at the station before! It’s just fantastic to hear that despite his set back last year they are doing so well together and we wish them every success at Horse of the Year Show in October!"

Mrs Beal said: "Razz is a very special pony and we’re thrilled he was able to make a full recovery. Not only is he a top class show pony who has qualified for Horse of the Year Show, he is a part of our family.

“We will always be forever grateful and eternally thankful for the amazing job the fire service did that day rescuing Razz. You have all paid a very big part of helping to make Hattie's dream of qualifying for Horse of the Year show come true.”