Nearly 7,000 people have signed a petition set up against senior figures at Three Rivers District Council after two horses were shot dead in Leavesden Country Park.

The petition, organised by the Racehorse Rescue Centre has been signed by more than 6,700 people and is calling for Three Rivers and one of its officers to be held to account for their handling of the case.

The results of our poll

In the petition, the Racehorse Rescue Centre said: “We would like an enquiry into the shooting of two horses by a gun wielding man riding a quad bike on public park land.”

Nigel Wood, chairman of the Racehorse Rescue Centre said: “They needed someone who knows how to handle horses and that’s what should have been sent in there, with some experience and even in the end result, we don’t understand why they had to shoot them, why didn’t they just dart them?”

Police were called on March 4 after members of the public saw two stray horses.

Councillor Ann Shaw, leader of Three Rivers Council told the Watford Observer last week: “What we usually do under our Green Yard Scheme, is to capture them but we couldn’t even get to them.

"There was a huge effort by the police and equine agency. We were trying for four hours and that is a long time. It was getting dark. What else could have done?