Mounted policing in the Humberside Police force area could be done by volunteers
Volunteers could be used to provide mounted policing in the region, according to Humberside police and crime commissioner Matthew Grove.
A decision to scrap Humberside Police's mounted section was confirmed earlier this month by Chief Constable Tim Hollis.
The move to disband the unit, which includes six horses, is expected to save £500,000 a year.
At the time, Mr Hollis said mounted officers would be hired from other forces for one-off events after the unit in Walkington closes in March next year.
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Now, Mr Grove has revealed volunteer riders could be used in the future at certain events.
Speaking at a Hull City Council scrutiny meeting, he said the option of using special constables working in conjunction with established equine centres in the region was currently being explored.
He said: "Part of my policing plan is about making more use of volunteers.
"With mounted work involving horses, that could involve things like ceremonial events, searches in rural areas, local patrols and the occasional one-off event based around the special constabulary and existing well-established equine operators.
"It is early days but we will see where we get to."
Mr Grove said the decision to axe the mounted unit had been an operational one for Mr Hollis to take alone.
"It was a decision I questioned him over but one that I support," he said.
"We used the horses 27 times last year at a cost of £500,000.
"They are an extremely expensive asset and we do not think we are getting value for money from their use.
"In addition, I am not sure whether using horses in this day and age at certain events is appropriate.
"After all, the British Army stopped using them in cavalry charges about a century ago."
Mr Grove said only a quarter of all police forces still had mounted sections and claimed there were better alternatives to policing large events.
He said: "I understand the public appeal of police horses but they have become a police tactic over the years and I believe there are better ways of policing."
Mr Grove confirmed the stables would be sold after the unit is disbanded.
The force's dog section, which is also based at Walkington, will be transferred to another location.