Bobby Dazzler

Working Shire Horse
Bobby Dazzler is a Shire gelding who lives around the corner, and even for an equine agnostic like me is an impressive piece of kit. I suppose working horses had largely gone from the countryside by the 1950s, but they were apparently still used for woodland management until virtually disappearing in the 1980s. Since when, though, they've recently enjoyed a mini revival. Local tree surgeon Rob Shylan and his partner Lorraine have trained Bobby to help them with timber extraction in ecologically or archaeologically sensitive areas, or with jobs like bracken bruising in inaccessible spots. He's not only infinitely less destructive than machinery, but he can pull a lot more than a quad bike and manoeuvre much better than a lorry. He's not surprisingly been busy, working at sites like Natural England's Midford Valley Woods, where he has been helping remove Turkey Oaks. For more details contact The Working Horse Trust.