Seeing Household Cavalry horses careering through the streets of London this morning instantly brings back memories of my time as a trooper in the Blues and Royals in the 1980s.

The horses caused “total mayhem” in central London this morning after they were spooked by builders moving rubble.

A group of seven horses and six soldiers from the Household Cavalry were on an extended exercise in Belgravia on Wednesday when chaos erupted.

Four service personnel were thrown from their horses and five of the animals got loose, smashing into vehicles and causing a number of injuries.

It is believed the animals were spooked when some concrete being moved by builders hit the ground.

Ambulance crews treated four people in three separate incidents in Buckingham Palace Road, Belgrave Square, and at the junction of Chancery Lane and Fleet Street, in the space of just 10 minutes.

It is understood that three soldiers were assessed in hospital for their injuries, which were not thought to be serious.

Believe it or not troopers falling off their horses was not an uncommon thing to happen, sometimes in full regalia, and I’m sure it’s not now.

Falmouth Packet:

The horses are exercised every morning through the streets of London with one trooper riding whilst leading another horse.

It was actually my favourite thing riding through Chelsea and Knightsbridge in the early hours of the morning before coming back to Hyde Park Barracks for a slap-up breakfast.

Officers would often take their own horses into Hyde Park to exercise them and sometimes we’d join them.

While it is true that the horses are trained to not react to crowds and loud noises they are very strong and wilful animals and, if they decide to go, then they go. And did I mention they're pretty big? There's nothing more terrifying than clinging on for dear life to a bolting cavalry horse.

The sight of the white horse, probably an officers or bandsman, covered in blood was pretty upsetting though, for one simple reason.

My horse, ridden by Trooper Smith as I was recovering from appendicitis, was killed in the Hyde Park bombing in 1982 along with seven others and four of my colleagues, including my troop leader, some of whom I had chatted to just hours earlier.

Seeing the damage the nail bombs did to their cuirasses, boots helmets made you realise how badly the poor horses must have suffered.

A less horrific bolting, but no less frightening one, came during Charles and Diana’s wedding.

A friend of mine, who later turned out to be an adept conman stealing ceremonial kit and selling it to unscrupulous antique dealers, but that’s another story, was unseated by his horse and preceded to bolt all along the parade. You can probably still see it on Youtube!

I hope the guys who fell are alright though and, of course, that the horses make a full recovery, the bleeding is often worse than it looks!