Stranded Horse, Riders Rescued from Rising Tide

The United Kingdom's Maritime and Coastguard Agency announced yesterday (July 9) that it was involved in the afternoon rescue of two horses and their riders who were stranded off shore on a sandbar at Holkham Bay as the tide was rising.

"Yarmouth Coastguard received '999' emergency call at 3:25 p.m. from a member of the public reporting two horses and their riders were stuck on a sandbank and the tide was rising around them at Holkham Bay, 200 metres (roughly 650 feet) from the shore, near Wells-next-the-Sea, on the North Norfolk Coast," reported the agency in a press release.

The riders were females in their 20s from Brandon, in Suffolk, who had trailered their horses to Wells to ride on the beach. "One of the horses had managed to reach shore unaided leaving its rider and the other horse still on the sand bank," the release continued. "Yarmouth Coastguard sent the Wells Coastguard Rescue team and requested the launch of the Wells RNLI inshore lifeboat to the scene."

The rising tide had just covered the sandbar when the lifeboat reached the horse and riders. "The two riders were brought safely to shore leaving the one horse with two of the lifeboat crew," said the agency. "The lifeboat and crew then returned to the sandbank and coaxed the swimming horse safely back to shore. Neither riders nor horses received any injuries during the operation."

According to the agency, the operation was "tricky" because of the strength of the tide and the likelihood of the horses becoming distressed and endangering the rescuers. However, the agency reports that the units performed very well and averted any potential complications.

About the Author

Stephanie L. Church, Editor-in-Chief

Stephanie L. Church, Editor-in-Chief, received a B.A. in Journalism and Equestrian Studies from Averett College in Danville, Virginia. A Pony Club and 4-H graduate, her background is in eventing, and she is schooling her recently retired Thoroughbred racehorse, Happy, toward a career in that discipline. She also enjoys traveling, photography, cycling, and cooking in her free time.

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