THURROCK Council have announced that the RSPCA haven’t raised any concerns over the welfare of horses in the Mardyke Valley, a week after campaigners slammed the council for not protecting the animals on the flood hit land.

The council said the animals were found to be fit and well fed, and despite it being a dedicated flood plain, there is higher, drier land to which the horses have free access.

A spokesman added: “Council officers have been monitoring the situation very closely over recent weeks.

"They have visited the site four times since Christmas – the latest yesterday - and have met with the tenant; somebody who has been grazing horses on the land for more than two decades, starting when it was owned by Essex County Council.

“Council trading standards officers are currently checking to confirm that all the horses grazing on the site have valid horse passports.”

“Thurrock will continue checking to monitor the safety of these animals regularly.”