Where is Richard Hayden's horse?

18:55, Jan 14 2013
Richard Hayden
Richard Hayden and his animal friends have had run ins with the law in the past

The whereabouts of a horse, whose owner had to leave Blenheim as part of his bail conditions, remains a mystery.

Richard James Hayden, 44, unemployed, is a well-known figure in Blenheim, often seen about town either walking his horse and dogs or being towed in his cart.

However, Hayden was ordered to stay out of Blenheim by a Christchurch judge last month when he was charged with the serious assault of a police officer.

Judge Alistair Garland granted bail with the conditions that Hayden live in Christchurch and stay out of Blenheim.

He reappeared in the Christchurch District Court on Friday and again entered no pleas.

A new court date was set for January 25.


However, Hayden's absence has led many people to ask about his horse, which used to stay in the garden of his old house on New Renwick Rd.

Marlborough District Council animal control contract manager Shelley Lines said the council received a call before Christmas to say the horse was roaming in the area of Riding for the Disabled on Maxwell Rd.

But when officers attended, there was no sign of the animal.

"We have not received any other calls about a roaming horse, so it is presumed someone made arrangements for its care," she said.

In August last year, Hayden was disqualified from owning a dog for one year after a string of infringement notices for not having his dogs under proper control and failing to register them, Ms Lines said. His five dogs were seized and rehomed in September.

Marlborough Riding for the Disabled assistant head coach and horse manager Amanda Bashford said the horse occasionally stayed in paddocks close to Brayshaw Park.

"I haven't seen it for ages," she said. "I wondered what had happened to it. I wouldn't have a clue where it is now."

She suggested Hayden might have taken the horse to Christchurch.

"Someone from animal control told me he used to work with racehorses."

That could have been in Christchurch, Ms Bashford said, although she wasn't sure.

"Otherwise it's vanished into thin air."

Riding for the Disabled was not in a position to offer the horse a new home anyway, Ms Bashford said.

The organisation was already over-subscribed and needed properly trained horses, she said.

Do you know where Richard's horse is?  Contact the express 520 8927 or ian.allen@fairfaxmedia.co.nz

The Marlborough Express