War Horsethe true story of Britain's equine army
1 x 60′
Steven Spielberg’s War Horse feature film made a lot of people think and a lot of horse lovers cry. Inevitably, the real story is even more epic. Over a million horses served the British army in World War One. Without them, many believe the outcome would have been very different.
The British Army hoped its illustrious cavalry regiments would win a swift victory, but it would be years before they enjoyed their moment of glory. Instead, in a new era of mechanised trench warfare, it was the heavy horses transporting guns, ammunition and food to the front line troops who were most important.
Behind the lines, the newly-formed Army Veterinary Corps supported the war horses with mobile first aid units, ambulances and field hospitals. In France alone, its hospitals cared for 750,000 horses and successfully treated three quarters of them.
But, only 60,000 war horses made it back to Britain. Six of them pulled the body of the unknown warrior to his final resting place at Westminster Abbey.
Royal Television Society Award – Best Specialist Factual Programme
Dr Mark Evans is a science communicator with an international profile as a TV presenter & producer