Stable fire causes chaos in Windsor

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Chaos hit the town of Windsor at the weekend when a fire at stables near Windsor castle led to dozens of horses being released and running panicking through the streets.

The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales came out of the Castle to see what was happening as fire engines rushed to the Guards Polo Club on Saturday night.

The Duke and Duchess rushed from their former marital home in Sunninghill Park a mile from Windsor after hearing the squeal of tyres and a car crash. They found a woman whose car had smashed into a pony fleeing the fire. The horse, killed instantly in the impact, was lying in the road. The woman, who has not been names, suffered facial injuries.

Police Sergeant Andrew Morrow said: "It was like the Grand National. There were more than 30 horses charging up the road in complete darkness, running towards oncoming vehicles."

Shortly before 10pm flames had been spotted leaping from a barn attached to four staff chalets at the club. A groom raced to the stables and opened the doors to release the 120 panicking ponies in case they were engulfed in flames and smoke. About 30 galloped through the main streets of the Berkshire town while others ran off alone. Several collided with cars and one other person was injured.