Police seek witnesses to tractor-pony near miss

Maria Gilkes with Ryha safely back in the field
Maria Gilkes with Ryha safely back in the field

A pony narrowly escaped serious injury when a heavy tractor and trailer drove past them in the road.

Maria Gilkes of Drayton was leading the 10hh Shetland/Appaloosa cross pony along the country lane at the top of Edge Hill.

“I was leading Ryha from one paddock to another up the road and my friend was riding my Shire horse a couple of hundred yards in front of us,” said Mrs Gilkes.

“A six-wheeled tractor pulling a green grain trailer came towards us. It slowed up for my friend in front and almost stopped for her but then just seemed to speed up past us.

“As it got closer the pony started to panic and I waved to try to get him to slow down.

“Even before he reached us, although I was doing my best to calm her, she swung her back end into the road. I was pulling for all I was worth to get her out of the road but it’s difficult when it is a 300 kilo animal that is panicking.

“The trailer nicked her rump and took off the fur. Had she been a bit taller it would have hit her full on and could have broken her back.”

Mrs Gilkes and her friend were wearing high visibility gear.

The incident happened on August 4 at about 3.30pm.

Mrs Gilkes noticed that three or four cars were queuing behind her and the pony.

Police would now like to speak to any of the drivers for information about the incident.

Anyone who did witness it should call 101 and quote the incident number 0235-August 4- 2014.

Mrs Gilkes says the five year old pony is now terrified of traffic and she is shelving plans to break the mare to harness.

“Since this incident I’ve talked to a number of riders in the area of Edge Hill and Ratley and it’s amazing how many of them have almost been in the ditch because of large vehicles, whose drivers won’t slow down, scaring their horses,” she said.