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Pen and ink and watercolour design for the King's State Coach, shown from the side.
According to the official journal of the Department of the Master of the Horse for 1760, ‘At the Commencement of this Reign [25 October 1760] a very superb State Coa

Explore objects related to the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace

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Group of Grooms with the little pony Webster taken at the Mews, Buckingham Palace May 1848

RCIN 2932499

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A bronze statuette of Prince Alfred, standing, wearing highland costume, his right arm clasping the mane of a Shetland pony standing behind him, and his left hand on his hip; on an irregular oval rocky base.

Prince Alfred (1844-1900) ©

In addition to the smart carriage horses used by the royal family, riding horses and ponies of all types were also kept at the Royal Mews by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. This photograph shows the Shetland pony, Webster – who was ridden by Queen Victoria’s children – with several members of Royal Mews staff. Some are pictured with objects relating to their work, including a coachman holding his long driving whip, and a man on a ladder who might be the gas lamplighter. Webster has his front hoof on the thigh of a kneeling man, perhaps the farrier, as this is a position used for trimming horses’ hooves.

Webster was ridden by several royal children, and was a favourite childhood pony of Prince Alfred – Queen Victoria and Prince Albert’s fourth child. Queen Victoria watched Prince Alfred riding in the Riding School in 1854 and wrote that ‘Affie has an excellent seat & looks so pretty, in his Highland dress, upon his shaggy little "Webster."’ Webster and his young rider were also sculpted by Carlo Marochetti, with the prince’s hand wrapped in his pony’s mane.