Afghanistan veteran's heartbreak as beloved warhorse that is 'his life' stolen from Durham stable

A heartbroken veteran has appealed for information after his beloved warhorse which has travelled around the world to perform historic re-enactments was stolen. Ricky Fenwick, 47, is desperate to find his horse Reiver which was last seen at 7.45pm on Tuesday (June 23), in the Nicholson’s estate in Plawsworth, County Durham. Not only is Reiver a highly trained Cavalry warhorse, but she’s also been Ricky’s best friend and rock for the past two-and-a-half-years helping him through his PTSD for his time in the armed forces.

After serving around the world including Afghanistan, Ricky said he was in a “bad place” until he met Reiver. And with the historical reenactment group the Queen’s Bays 2nd Dragoon Guards Living History Group, together they have been performing in events around the world. Ricky said: “I just want to find her, she’s my life.

“I spend four or five hours every day with her and now she’s gone I just don’t know what I’m going to do.

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“She’s not just a horse, she has done things no other horse in the North East has done. “We’ve been to France and Belgium, between 2016 and 2018 we attended 38 events all over just over the two years. “We even went to Stonehenge which was just an incredible experience.”

After discovering Reiver had disappeared from the field, Ricky frantically searched for her and found a 15-foot hole in the fence leading him to believe she was stolen.

Reiver at Stonehenge in 2018

He added: “It was big enough for a truck and a trailer and if they put a ramp down she would have just gone up it. “She trusts people, she would have gone with them.” Ricky said he has struggled with his PTSD which he said caused one side of his heart to be larger than the other.

He served for ten years with The Life Guards, which is part of the Household Cavalry, and was on active tour in Bosnia in the late 90s, when his armoured vehicle was blown up by a landmine. The traumatic incident has left the formal lance corporal suffering from PTSD. He explained: “When you have PTSD you just go to another place, a dark place, an angry place.

“I was always angry. I was on a lot of drugs just to try and keep me calm but I was always angry. “But then I would be seething and I would feel a pulse in my eye, my heart would be beating so fast that it feels like your body is about to explode.

“Reiver is not just a horse, she’s my saviour. Horses can save people. “Before I had her, I was in a bad place, I was in motorcycle gangs.

Now she’s gone, I’m scared that I’m going to go back to being a hellraiser.” The Queen’s Bays 2nd Dragoon Guards Living History Group are based in the North East but travel all over to attend events and perform historic reenactments. They attend regular displays and events throughout the year including the Great Dorset Steam Fair and even visit schools and museums for show and tell events.

In a desperate appeal, the group posted on Facebook urging anyone with information to come forward. They said: “Reiver is Ricky’s horse and as a veteran who has served his country in various theatres with PTSD he relies heavily on his best friend for many things and as such, he has had a massive part of him taken away. “I am sure many of you that own horses or animals will understand that they are just more than pets or hobbies they are part of us.

Afghanistan veteran's heartbreak as beloved warhorse that is 'his life' stolen from Durham stableReiver was last seen on Tuesday night

“We have offered a cash reward for information but if anyone knows or sees Reiver around or being sold then please let us know.

“We will even take an anonymous phone call with a location where Reiver has been left and we will collect. “Thank you, everyone, that has helped you have touched our hearts and we thank you for all of your efforts.” Ever since the mare disappeared the group has carried out search parties with Reiver yet to be found.

Durham Constabulary has been approached for comment.

Anyone with information should contact the police on 101.

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