Spooked Army horses cause ‘total mayhem’ in central London

Army horses have bolted through central London after they were spooked by the noise of builders moving rubble down a rubbish chute.

Chaos erupted when seven of the animals got loose, with four soldiers thrown off during an extended exercise in Belgravia on Wednesday.

Ambulance crews treated four people in three separate incidents in the space of 10 minutes as the animals ran amok.

It is understood that three Household Cavalry personnel have been assessed at hospital for their injuries, but they were not seriously hurt.

Two horses on the loose bolt through the streets of London near Aldwych
Two horses on the loose bolt through the streets of London near Aldwych (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

The drama began near Buckingham Palace Road where witnesses saw a serviceman thrown from his horse, and one of the loose animals smashing into a taxi waiting outside the Clermont Hotel, shattering the windows.

LBC spoke to the driver, Faraz, who said a white horse had collided with his Mercedes people carrier, leaving blood spattered down the side.

Two horses were seen running in the road near Aldwych, one of which appeared to be covered in blood, and later near the Limehouse tunnel, before they were recaptured by City of London Police.

A horse also crashed into a parked double-decker tour bus, smashing the windscreen, and one collided with a taxi, but no-one was hurt.

Roland, a worker for tour bus company Tootbus, described the chaotic scenes near Victoria.

“I saw horses come from the bus station in front of Victoria run around in a frenzy,” he said.

“People were running around to avoid them – it was total mayhem.”

A second tour bus worker, named only as Mr Mahmood, said: “One of the horses bumped into a bus, then everything got out of control.

“I saw two horses without riders gallop away. One rider managed to calm his horse down.

“An ambulance went to assist another rider who had been injured.”

An Army spokesperson said: “A number of military working horses became loose during routine exercise this morning.

“All of the horses have now been recovered and returned to camp.

“A number of personnel and horses have been injured and are receiving the appropriate medical attention.”

Pictures and videos of two of the animals running loose around London were shared on social media, one of which showed a black 4×4 with blue lights following the horses between Tower Bridge and Limehouse tunnel.

City of London Police said on X: “At around 8.40am, we were called about horses that had became loose and were travelling through the City.

“Our officers have contained two horses on the highway near Limehouse. An Army horse box collected the horses and transported them to veterinary care.”