UK regiment offers support to police Mounted Branch

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Harriet Cross, British High Commissioner to TT and ASP Michael Sooker, flanked by Members of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment and TTPS Mounted Branch – Photo courtesy the British High Commission

IN support of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service’s (TTPS) Mounted Branch, the British High Commission has invited the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment (HCMR) of the British Army to provide technical support on issues related to ceremonial, animal welfare, training procedures and equipment procurement.

A media statement on Wednesday from the commission’s political press and public affairs officer, André Blackburn, said five members of the UK’s Blues and Royals Regiment will spend two weeks in Trinidad and Tobago.

The aim is to help strengthen links between TTPS in this specialist area and counterparts in the UK.

“The visit forms a part of an ongoing collaborative programme between the TTPS Mounted Branch and UK Mounted Regiment, providing in-person training on farriery (horse hoof husbandry and shoe repairs), saddlery (correct fitting of saddles), veterinary issues and riding instruction,” the statement said.

“The officers and non-commissioned officers of the Blues and Royals will provide assessments and training clinics for the TTPS Mounted Branch, as well as conducting an open school for all stables in Trinidad and Tobago to participate in the training.”

Members of Household Calvary Mounted Regiment. – Photo courtesy the British High Commission

The UK High Commission is hoping for wide engagement from all relevant stakeholders, including government veterinary officers and stables nationwide that focus on horse rehabilitation and community engagement.

The statement quoted British High Commissioner to TT Harriet Cross as saying, “We hope that this proposed training and community engagement schedule will develop into a long-term partnership, with ongoing knowledge and expertise sharing.”

“Equine management is a specialist area in which the Household Cavalry has a developed skillset and so I am excited about the possibilities around this collaboration. Let us hope that Mounted Branch and Mounted Regiment become firm stable mates.”

The training programme builds on an initial visit by the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment to Trinidad and Tobago in 2019, during which several technical areas of assistance were identified.

A member of Household Calvary Mounted Regiment. – Photo courtesy the British High Commission

HCMR provides equine training in other parts of the world, such as Oman, Saudi Arabia, Canada and Qatar.

It comprises the two most senior regiments in the British Army: the Blues and Royals (formally the Royal Horseguards and First Dragoons) and the Life Guards.

They are the King’s official bodyguard and on active service are responsible for armoured reconnaissance.