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Last Updated: Monday, 25 October, 2004, 15:32 GMT 16:32 UK
Huntsman 'rode horse at saboteur'
Huntsman Jonathan Broise
Mr Broise told police his horse struck Mrs Bridle by accident
A huntsman rode his horse at a hunt saboteur and knocked her over, breaking her shoulder, a court has heard.

Hove Crown Court heard Jonathan Broise used his horse to push Wendy Bridle out of the way.

The alleged offence is said to have happened during a meet of the Chiddingfold, Leconfield and Cowdray Hunt last year.

Mr Broise, 46, of London Road, Petworth, West Sussex, denies causing actual bodily harm. The case continues.

'Glancing blow'

On Monday the jury was shown videos of events before and after the alleged incident, at the meeting of the West Sussex-based hunt on 27 September 2003.

They showed saboteurs spraying a scent on the ground to distract hounds and sounding horns to disrupt the hunt.

Mrs Bridle, 60, told the court: "I looked up and the horse was immediately in front of me.

"I tried to move to the left but it was so close it caught me a glancing blow to my right shoulder and sent me spinning."

Hunt saboteur Wendy Bridle
Wendy Bridle suffered a broken shoulder in the alleged incident

It is claimed Mr Broise was riding the horse.

The court heard Mrs Bridle was taken to St Richard's Hospital in Chichester were doctors found her shoulder was broken.

Prosecutor Bernard Phelvin told the court the behaviour of the saboteurs had annoyed the hunt members.

He said: "It appears clear that the defendant thought the protesters were striking the hounds.

"Whether they were or not may not matter greatly but in any event no doubt the behaviour of the protesters was tiresome and irksome."

Mr Phelvin said the collision happened when Mr Broise jumped out of bushes and said he may have been targeting a group of saboteurs rather than Mrs Bridle specifically.

The court heard Mr Broise had told police his horse had struck Mrs Bridle completely by accident and he had not attempted to injure her.

Mr Phelvin said he questioned this defence, given that Mr Broise had 25 years' experience of riding horses.




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