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By Jeffery Garfield

Last updated: 5th July 2023

Hackney Pony


Jeffery Garfield
Last updated: 5th July 2023

The Hackney ponynow featured in the show rings is a breed of slim, energetic ponies related to their larger cousins, the Hackney horse. Depending on their show ring performance, mane, tail appearance, and size, the Hackney ponies are categorized into six types including Hackney Roadster, Hackney Cobtail, Harness Pony, as well as Show, Country, and Park Pleasure Driving.

Hackney Pony Pictures

Quick Information

Other Names Wilson Ponies
Temperament / Personality Brave, active, alert, tenacious, fearless, friendly
Physical Characteristics Small head, alert, pricked ears, large eyes, arched and muscular neck, powerful shoulders, compact back, light frame, strong legs, very hard feet; tail is set high
Colors Bay, black, chestnut; may have white markings
Height (size) 12-14 hands (122-142 cm, 48-56 in)
Weight Unknown
Blood Type Warm-blooded
Common Uses Companion animals, show ponies, carriage ponies
Health Not known to suffer from any genetic health conditions
Gaited Spectacular, energetic, and fluid action; more exaggerated movements than Hackney horses
Popular Traits Well-proportioned body, animated motion, high endurance, noble personality
Feeding/Diet Hay, grass, grain, and small amounts of supplements
Country of Origin England
Ancestors Hackney Horse, Fell Pony, Welsh Pony
Breed Registry/Association Hackney Horse Society, American Hackney Horse Society (AHHS)

Hackney Pony Pleasure Driving Video

History and Development

In 1872, Christopher Wilson, an English breeder used a Hackney stallion named Sir George and crossed it with Fell Pony mares to create an equine breed with true pony characteristics. The pony he developed was influenced by the Welsh Pony blood, and it exhibited long trots like the Hackney Horse. By the end of the 19th-century, the Hackneys became popular for their trotting abilities.

When vehicles were uncommon, these carriage ponies were elegantly driven in Great Britain as well as the United States. With advancements in science and technology, cars became the main driving machines while the use of Hackneys reduced considerably. After the Second World War, these equines were popularized as show ponies, which improved their population.

The Hackney ponies are now used in the US to influence the American Shetland ponies, adding quality and refinement to the breed. They have also been used to refine the action of the Miniature Horse.

Interesting Facts

  • Apart from being shown with bikes, the Hackney Roadsters are also hooked to four-wheel wagons. The first wagon class was offered at the 2006 World’s Championship Horse Show.
  • The Hackney Cobtails are displayed with a docked tail and a braided mane.

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