Pony chaos at Glastonbury Frost Fayre leaves children injured

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By abbie_glasto | Saturday, December 15, 2012, 18:08

What should have been a cheerful pony ride to Santa's Grotto turned to chaos at Glastonbury Frost Fayre today when a pony bolted causing devastation.

Four children were aboard a festive pony trap ride to Abbot's Kitchen when a small pony was spooked and bolted straight into two local stalls set up for the Fayre which were left in ruins.

The children tumbled out of the cart as it tipped on its side and emergency services were immediately called to the scene. All four children were taken to hospital to be checked over.

Bethan Harding-Reyland and her mum Lynn Bastian were among those whose stalls were destroyed.

Bethan said: "The pony was doing a u-turn at the Abbey gates as it had been doing all day but this time it slipped which really spooked it,

"The pony then charged right at our stall and we both had to dive out the way as quickly as we could. It was really scary.

"Our stall was completely destroyed and so was another one, it was really scary but we are both glad no-one's hurt too badly."

Lynn added: "I think everyone's just in shock to be honest – two little girls ran off as soon as they fell off so we all thought two children were missing."

The children were described as suffering "bumps and bruises, but no serious injuries".

A man, who had been at the reins at the time of the incident, was taken to hospital with a leg injury.

Members of the public helped out by giving out free teas and coffees to those affected by the incident and the pony was calmed and swiftly removed from the scene.

John Henderson, a Health and Safety Officer for National Examination Board in Occupational Safety and Health was on the scene and said nothing could have prevented the incident:

"It was really shocking for everyone, especially the parents of the children, but the poor weather conditions caused the pony to slip and no-one can account for the actions of a pony that gets spooked."

"Of the four children on the cart only one was injured and that was only minor so it was just a job of calming everyone down after that. So many people were visibly upset.

He added: "It just goes to show how supportive a community can be in these sorts of situations – everyone around was ready to help out and comfort those people who were upset."

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