Meet the two new police horses ready to hit our streets
Northumbria Police may be recruiting 600 police officers over the next three years - but two new starters in particular have caught the force's eye.
Earlier this year the force announced plans to boost the number of police constables employed across the region with the first cohort of recruits already undergoing their training. But a few miles from the Newcastle training school two more recruits have been getting used to life in a police uniform - horses Pablo and Patronus. The pair are the latest additions to Northumbria's Mounted Section and help patrol all across the region and offer a valuable resource at big events. Sergeant Stu Coates, from Northumbria Police's Mounted Section, said: "It is great to welcome two new additions to the team and hopefully the public will get a chance to meet them when they're out on patrol. "The Mounted Section is a fantastic department and performs a number of roles to help support area command officers working from up in Berwick down to Houghton. "Our horses are great for high visibility patrols but they are also invaluable when it comes to policing football matches, protests and other large-scale events that we may host in our region. "They undergo vigorous training to be able to perform the role but they absolutely love coming to work and meeting the lovely people who live and work in the North East." Pablo is the youngest member of the team at six-years-old and is a chestnut Irish Draught Gelding measuring 17hh. He arrived in the force from Ireland with very little experience of public order situations. Patronus is an 11-year-old thoroughbred and in his previous life was an event horse who used to jump his way around a cross country course. He has now swapped that sporting career for a life as a crime buster. All the horses in the Mounted Section have names beginning with a 'P' so they can all be identified as working for the police, but they only get that privilege once they have passed their intial assessments. Pablo and Patronus - which is latin for 'Protector' - will now join the other members of the Mounted Section: Pendragon, Parker, Pye, Paddington, Picasso, Peroni and Percy. To see what the horses are up to day-by-day follow them on Twitter by searching the username @NPHorses.