New Avon and Somerset Police horse officially named

Police horse Redcliffe with PC Helen Du Heaume at the ceremony

Police horse Redcliffe with PC Helen Du Heaume at the ceremony - Credit: Avon and Somerset Police

A horse used to petrol the streets of Somerset has been officially named.

The Avon and Somerset Police horse was officially named Redcliffe, after the area in Bristol.

Chief Constable Sarah Crew renamed the newly qualified member of the mounted section, who was previously known as Ben, at an informal ceremony on Thursday, December 30.

Police Horse (PH) Redcliffe is a six-year-old Irish draft horse who travelled from Ireland to join the mounted section in February 2021. 

He has undertaken training with PC Helen Du Heaume and will continue his education with his new rider PC Amy Huxtable.

PH Redcliffe shares the same colour in his coat as the red sandstone cliffs which line the southern side of the Floating Harbour. Redcliffe is a historic area of Bristol and home to ancient landmarks including the medieval St Mary Redcliffe Church, which was the location of the naming ceremony.

"A friendly and patient horse, PH Redcliffe has already proven himself to be excellent at interacting with the public with a love for attention from anyone willing to give him a pat while on patrol," said a spokesperson. 

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"He also loves showing off his dressage skills. He has already helped the mounted section patrol all areas of Avon and Somerset.

"We have a tradition of naming our horses after places within the Avon and Somerset area including Bristol-based names for police horses Blaise and Trinity. PH Windsor and PH Jubilee were named by Her Majesty The Queen during previous visits to Somerset."

The naming ceremony was watched by Canon Dan Tyndall (Vicar of St Mary Redcliffe), PC Tristan Smith with PH Somerset and officers from the Bridewell neighbourhood policing team who look after the Redcliffe and Temple areas.

Sergeant Hannah Clarke, of the mounted section, said:  “Naming our horse Redcliffe is a tribute to one of our most historic and popular areas of Bristol.

“Having worked extremely hard during his first 10 months with us, it’s a delight to see our horse formerly known as Ben move into the New Year with his official police horse name. As he now steps forward into the next stage of his career as a police horse, we are confident he will make the area after which he is named extremely proud.”

For more information about the local policing team for Redcliffe and Temple visit https://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/your-area/redcliffe-and-temple/