THE HACK horse sanctuary at Llay is mourning the loss of one of its brightest stars.

Scamp, a black and white Shetland pony, stood only 27 inches tall but for years had been a massive hit with visitors.

He also became a darling of the pantomime audiences when he was signed up to pull Cinderella’s coach in productions at the Stiwt Theatre in Rhos and Chester Gateway.

Scamp had just celebrated his 40th birthday when he suffered a stroke and was quietly put to sleep in his paddock, leaving broken-hearted sanctuary volunteers to cancel the party they were planning for him.

Sanctuary founder Pamela Bluck said: “Scamp had a wonky leg and a scruffy hairdo but the heart of a lion.

“He was brave and courageous .

“The love of his life was a 14.2 feisty chestnut Arab mare and he would stand outside her stable door for hours keeping her safe.

“He had been at HACK for many years and was enjoyed by all.

“He had a cheeky personality, but was quiet enough for the smallest of children. He loved his daily cup of tea.”

She added: “Scamp was an amazing little guy who gave such a lot and he will be sorely missed.

“Many people have already noticed that he is missing and have been saddened by the news.

“This is the second of our old horses to die this year and while we are sad at their parting we know we had given them the safe haven that they had both so deserved.

“HACK will continue in its work for the welfare of the horse and to help ponies like Scamp who find themselves homeless through no fault of their own.”