The ancient province of the Perche has given its name to a famous breed of horse - the Percheron.


Legend has it that after a battle at Poitiers in 732 between the French and the Saracens, many fine Saracen stallions were brought back to the Perche area for breeding, and it is from this stock that the modern day breed is descended.

Prized for their strength and endurance, the Percheron was used extensively to pull the mail-coaches of 19th century France, by the Parisian fire-brigade - and of course as a draught-animal on thousands of farms, not just in France but all over the world.

With the advent of mechanization, the popularity of the breed has declined, but they are still very popular, particularly in competitive carriage-driving.

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