'Lucky' escape for rider hit off horse

PUBLISHED: 08:00 22 January 2015 | UPDATED: 09:00 22 January 2015

Kelly Jewell with horse Sampson.

Kelly Jewell with horse Sampson.

Archant

A WOMAN 'miraculously' avoided serious injury when the horse she was riding was hit by a car.

Kelly Jewell, aged 35, was left with a stiff back and her confidence knocked after falling from her horse during the incident on Thursday.

She has been riding all her life and works training ex-race horses to become show jumpers or for dressage. But now she is too frightened to do a vital part of her job – taking the horses out on the roads.

Kelly was just 60 metres from her livery yard in Roman Road, Bleadon, when the accident occurred.

Kelly said: “I was out riding my horse when I saw a car coming and noticed it wasn’t slowing down.

“I was as far over as I could possibly be and the driver went straight through me and the horse.

“I was thrown to the floor and my horse ran off.”

Kelly lives in Uphill with her 41-year-old fiancé Tony Hobden, who is glad the situation was not more serious.

He said: “It’s nothing short of a miracle. If it had been a girl on a pony, I would have dreaded the outcome.”

The horse, an ex-racing thoroughbred called No Justice, suffered some flesh injuries and remains shaken.

Kelly said: “The horse is relatively unscathed physically, but emotionally he now has issues with traffic and needs to be re-trained.

“And I feel pretty awful about it to be honest, I’m very nervous. It is a big part of what I do for a living but I don’t feel safe doing it now.

“The main issue is there are an awful lot of horse-riders in the area and people don’t acknowledge we have a right to be on the road.”

According to UK law, the police do not have to be informed if a horse is hit by a car.

Kelly said: “People just need to be more aware. Most of us horse-riders are conscientious as are the majority of drivers but there are those few who are a danger to life.

“I was really lucky to be on that horse. I know the correct way to fall but if someone not as experienced as me was hit it could have been a very different story.”

Tony added: “Kelly was gutted when she went out riding this week and was too scared to go on the road, she has been riding all her life and felt a bit daft. But she’ll get back on the saddle.”

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