Belfast Telegraph

Stampede of wild horses shocks Creggan residents

Leona O'Neill

By Leona O'Neill

Residents of a housing estate got the shock of their lives when they looked out their windows on Monday night to see a troop of horses galloping down the street.

More than 30 of the animals escaped from a field above Creggan in londonderry, ran down Bligh's Lane and into Ballymore Park, gathering en masse in the small cul-de-sac, before racing down the street again and back into the countryside.

Locals were alerted by the loud sound of hooves shortly before 11.30pm and were shocked to see horse after horse race past their front doors.

Ricky Callan (26) knew something was up after his dogs began barking in his back garden.

He said: "I went out to see what was wrong and heard this strange noise from out the front. I walked down my drive to the front and there were at least 30 horses all crammed into the cul-de-sac, in people's gardens, standing on the road.

"My jaw dropped when I saw them. There was this big horse standing beside my brand new car. It made me nervous.

"My dogs and my neighbour's dogs were barking and it might have spooked them for they just all took off again down the street. There was a man at the end of the street and he was shooing them back up the road.

"I don't know how they got out. They looked like well looked after horses. There has been a lot of vandalism at the fences along the back roads, fences being broken down and stuff. I think that is what must have happened here."

Seamus McClafferty (42) said he was astounded by what he saw. "I was in the kitchen making my sandwiches for my lunch and heard what I thought was heavy torrential rain. My wife looked out the window and saw the horses running up into our cul-de-sac," he said.

"She called me and I went out to the front door. I couldn't believe my eyes when a few minutes later all these horses galloped back down the street."

Police confirmed they had been contacted at 11.30pm about horses on the loose in Derry.

"Officers spoke to the owner and the horses were returned to a field," they added.

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