11:30AM, Saturday 08 May 2021
A carthorse and ‘local legend’ of Cookham Dean has passed away aged 20 years old.
Henry the Shire horse was a retired carthorse and his paddock was on Warner’s Hill opposite Hardings Green.
Owned by Kevin Peachey, Henry was mostly a carthorse for private hire and also took part in carting contests before he retired.
He was born on June 1, 2000 and he died in his sleep on Friday, April 30, almost a month short of his 21st birthday – making Henry a ‘senior’ horse.
During lockdowns, Henry provided local children ‘much needed friendship’ at times when they couldn’t see human friends.
Kevin wishes to thank the community for the ‘countless’ messages, cards, flowers and artwork from children and adults who cared about Henry.
In a note posted on Henry’s paddock, he wrote: “Henry is now in horse heaven with his mum, dad and friends.
“To all the children who loved to come and say hello, I thank you very much, we wish you all best and hope you are not too sad.”
Resident Emmy Costa-Wagner visited Henry’s paddock many times with her two children over the five years since they moved to Cookham Dean, to feed and brush him after his retirement.
“Many other locals especially kids did the same – visited him and spoke to him, fed him,” said Emmy.
“My 10-year-old daughter and myself visited on Friday 30th April, the last time we saw him alive.
“We visited him in the morning before school run. My daughter was worried about him and dragged me off to check on him.
“(Later) we read the note saying that Henry had passed away that day. We have been so upset after finding out the terribly sad news about Henry passing, the kids especially.
“We miss Henry very much. Henry had a beautiful life – (he was) a local legend,” said Emmy.
“The paddock and Cookham Dean do not feel the same without him, it’s been a very sad time for us. He was so greatly loved by so many around here.”
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