Disclosure Details

Police Horses - 593/14

Dated: 29 Jul 2014

Date of request:    21/07/14

Date of response:  29/07/14

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')(FOIA)

Thank you for your email dated 21 July  2014 in which you made a request for access to certain information which may be held by Northumbria Police.

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked: 

1) How many police horses does Northumbria police (hereafter 'the force') currently have?
2) At what age does the force retire police horses?
3) How many horses are due for retirement in the next 12 months?
4) How many horses has the force retired in the last three years (or for as long as records are kept)?
5) What is the force's policy on re-homing retired horses, and under what circumstances will a retired horse be put down?
6) How many horses has the force had put down, and for what reason, over the last three years (or for as long as records are kept)?
7) How much has the force paid to have these horse put down and/or, how much does it cost to have a horse put down?
8) How much has the force spent on re-homing retired horses o0ver the past 3 years?


In response:

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Mounted Section  of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police.

I have today decided to disclose the located information to you as follows.

1. 9
2. There is no specific age.  A horse will be retired when it is considered that the horse is no longer capable of performing its required role. This may be for reasons of age, injury or a decrease in the level of competence required from the horse.
3. Potentially 1 however this may increase or we may seek to manage the horse identified in a different manner to extend its working life, see point 2 above.
4. 4
5. A police horse will be retired to a suitable home where it can live a life suitable to its age, condition and capabilities. A police horse will be put down only in circumstances where to keep the horse alive would cause the animal greater suffering.
6. Northumbria Police has had one horse put down in the last three years. The horse was suffering from a chronic arthritic condition.
7. The organisation paid £100-00 to have the horse put down.
8. The  organisation has re-homed 3 horses to the Horse Trust in Buckinghamshire. There is no charge to us in re-homing horses to this charitable organisation.

Due to the different methods of recording information across 43 forces, a specific response from one constabulary should not be seen as an indication of what information could be supplied (within cost) by another.  Systems used for recording these figures are not generic, nor are the procedures used locally in capturing the data.  For this reason responses between forces may differ, and should not be used for comparative purposes.

The information we have supplied to you is likely to contain intellectual property rights of Northumbria Police.  Your use of the information must be strictly in accordance with the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 (as amended) or such other applicable legislation.  In particular, you must not re-use this information for any commercial purpose.

How to complain

If you are unhappy with our decision or do not consider that we have handled your request properly and we are unable to resolve this issue informally, you are entitled to make a formal complaint to us under our complaints procedure which can be found at: http://www.northumbria.police.uk/foi/disclosurelog/foicomprights.asp

If you are still unhappy after we have investigated your complaint and reported to you the outcome, you may complain directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office and request that they investigate to ascertain whether we have dealt with your request in accordance with the Act.


FOI Complaint Rights Procedure_tcm4-67103