A horse owner has spoken of her joy at being reunited with her animal three years after it went missing.
Teresa Newcome-Baker, from Woodford, loaned out 15-year-old bay cob Quincey in December 2010 after suffering a shoulder injury which left her unable to ride.
She said the loanee did not return the horse to her, and she reported him as stolen to police, but was unable to prove she had loaned the horse rather than given it away.
She added: “He went out on loan to a lady who gave me false details and sold him on within three weeks. I have been searching for him this whole time. I was calling the abattoirs and going to horse sales to try and find him, in the hope he was still alive.”
Then, almost three years after initially handing Quincey over, Teresa tracked him down to Crieff Hydro, a riding school near Perth in Scotland.
And after investigating, the riding school agreed to return Quincey to his grateful owner.
“About nine weeks ago I got a phone call from these people saying they had my horse,” Teresa said. “I was ecstatic. They didn’t ask for payment. They gave me a phone call while I was at work. I sat and cried for 10 minutes, out of shock more than anything.
“I hired a horsebox to go and pick him up. After three years the first thing I wanted to do was to to see him.”
Liz Simpson, head of the riding centre at Crieff Hydro, said: “Seeing the bond that exists between Teresa and Quincey, even after three years apart, confirmed to us that giving the horse back to the owner was undoubtedly the right thing to do.
“Teresa has had Quincey since he was 14-months-old and he knew who she was when he saw her. It really was a very touching moment and we’re delighted that Teresa can look forward to happier times, having Quincey back where he belongs.”
John Jennett, managing director of Crieff Hydro, said they were happy to write off the four-figure sum invested in buying, looking after and ultimately replacing Quincey.