Brian the horse fails police trial

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A horse called Brian, whose planned name change to a more god-like title sparked a public outcry, has failed his tests to join the police.

Thames Valley Police (TVP) said the six-year-old horse was not suited to life as part of the mounted branch because of his fear of urban settings.

TVP had planned to given Brian a war or god-themed name, such as Odin, Thor or Hercules, but there was a groundswell of support for the Shire Friesian cross to keep his name.

Having failed his training, Brian will be handed back to The Stables Equestrian Centre, a riding school in Wilstead, Bedfordshire.

Sergeant Spencer Kervin said: “Brian has been with us for nearly two weeks and he has been ridden every day, as part of his trial period.

“It has become very apparent very quickly that he is not settled to the urban environment.

“He has been brought up in a rural setting and he is nervous when he is out and about.

“You can see the change in him when he walks out the gates of the police station, which endangers him, the officer on board and the public around his feet.

“It is the sort of thing you cannot train out of a horse, sadly, and it is not fair on him and his welfare to continue.

“If a horse is going to get used to an environment they will generally settle within a week.

“Brian was a lovely horse and it is a shame to have to hand him back, but for his own welfare it is for the best and he is going back to a lovely home.

“We wish him and his owners all the best for the future.”

Former Big Brother winner Brian Belo was among those who said Brian should be allowed to keep his name.

He told the BBC website: “I think it’s a marvellous name for a horse, it’s a friendly name, you would want to be kept safe by a Brian.”