A CHANCE conversation between a taxi driver and passenger nearly a year ago led to the rescue of neglected horses.

Jonathan Roberts knew who to call after he found a horse collapsed in a field near Sling Lane, Leigh Sinton, near Worcester.

Nearly a year ago he had been travelling in Sue Penny’s cab when she told him about her charity work at Penny Ha’penny Horse and Pony Rescue Centre.

Last Monday, the 29-year-old was walking along a path when he came across a dog walker in the middle of a muddy field worried about the welfare of the horse.

“The woman said she was concerned about the horses, she said something wasn’t right but didn’t know what to do. That was when I remembered Sue, hoping she would be able to save them.”

Fortunately, he had kept hold of her number and after Mrs Penny arrived she contacted the RSPCA and a vet, who took it away by horse ambulance.

Sadly, it was too late to save the horse and another animal passed away two days later.

Four other horses are being looked after by Mrs Penny and a fifth will also be cared for once it can be captured. The RSPCA is investigating the incident.

Mr Roberts said: “It was a twist of fate that during the taxi journey we had a conversation in which she told me horses were her life and explained what she did at the rescue centre.

“At the time I thought nothing more of it so it was lucky I kept Sue’s number.”

Mrs Penny said when she arrived she found the horses were extremely emaciated and thanked Mr Roberts.

She said: “I can’t praise him enough. I must have bored him with my stories about horses and he remembered the conversation. He is obviously very kind and caring and his actions have helped to save them.”

She said the horses were building up their strength.

“They now enjoy a cuddle and are alert but it is going to be a long road before they look like they should.”

Cally Law, from Malvern, was moved to write to Worcester News sister paper the Malvern Gazette praising Mrs Penny’s swift action.

She said: “Those of us who witnessed her passionate attempts to save these beautiful creatures from suffering were very moved. Thank you again Sue for all your hard work and for your caring.”

Donations can be made on the Penny Ha'penny Rescue Centre's Facebook page or by cheque to Penny Ha’penny Horse Rescue, 37 Knapp Way, Malvern WR14 1SG.