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Hyde Park walk and cattle troughs

2013 October 13
cattle trough hyde park

Commemorative trough near the Household Cavalry barracks
Thanks to Denise Pakeman for the photo

Yesterday’s animal history walk around Hyde Park raised nearly £150 for the wonderful Hillside animal sanctuary.

During the walk we looked at two different horse troughs erected by the Metropolitan Cattle Trough and Drinking Fountain Association, whose work I discussed in Animal Rights.  One near the busy West Carriage Drive (and opposite the new Serpentine gallery) was erected in 1907 after a request from George Rogers, a cab driver, concerned about the need of working cab horses for fresh drinking water.

Another, on the Knightsbridge side of the park near the Household Cavalry barracks, was originally located on the Victoria Embankment and moved here in 1985. This now has a primarily commemorative function recording the horses killed and injured in the IRA bomb of 1982. Four soldiers and seven horses were killed (and others injured including, most famously, the horse Sefton).It is unusual, however, for animals to be privileged in this way. The nearby 1924 Cavalry memorial by Adrian Jones, for instance, depicts many horses visually but in the text refers solely to the different regiments of the empire who fought in the 1914 -18 war.

Kim Stallwood, animal advocate and author of the forthcoming book GROWL, was on the walk and recorded me speaking at the Animals in War memorial. The sound quality isn’t that great – but it is on a traffic island in Park Lane! I have also written about the memorial on other pages on this website.

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