A gentle giant from the Dyfed Shire Horse Farm in Pembrokeshire will play an important role in King Charles III's coronation.

Major Apollo, or Ed as he was known on the farm in Eglwyswrw where he was raised, joined the Queen’s Household Cavalry in 2019.

The ceremonial drum horse will lead 200 other horses on the procession route on the streets of London, carrying the ceremonial kettle drum.

“It is an honour for us,” said Shire Horse farm founder Enid Cole. “We are very proud.

“It is quite an accolade. We are only a small business in the sticks, but we have sent three horses to the Royal Household in London."

Major Apollo was the second horse to be sold by Dyfed Shire Horse Farm to the Household Cavalry in December 2019, following in the hoofprints of Celt, who became a drum horse in 2008.

A third shire horse from the farm, Willa Rose, has also been bought by the Household Cavalry and is being trained as a drum horse.

Major Apollo, who the farm bought as a yearling in 2016, made his debut with the Queen’s Household Cavalry at Royal celebrations during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee weekend in May 2022.

He also took part in her majesty’s funeral last September.

Major Apollo's royal links stretch back to July 2018, when Camilla, the Queen Consort, visited the farm along with the King, who was then Prince of Wales.

She took the reins as Ed pulled her around the farm on a carriage ride.

Western Telegraph: Camilla, the Queen Consort, and Ed (now Major Apollo) during a visit to Dyfed Shire Horse Farm in July 2018Camilla, the Queen Consort, and Ed (now Major Apollo) during a visit to Dyfed Shire Horse Farm in July 2018 (Image: PA)

Major Apollo stands at more than 17 hands (1.73m or 5ft 6in), weighs nearly 800kg (125 stone) and has been trained to carry a musician and drums during ceremonial events.

On his selection for the household cavalry the farm’s Mark Cole said: “Ed is the most calm, laid back and relaxed of the gentle giant breed. We know that he will go on to do great things in London.”

He will have the kettle drum that dates back to the reign of King Charles II (1660-1685), and Mr Murphy said it would represent "hundreds of years and the history and the pageantry is unique to this country".

The King’s Procession, accompanied by The Sovereign’s Escort of the Household Cavalry, will depart Buckingham Palace through the Centre Gate, on Saturday May 6.

It will then proceed down The Mall, passing through Admiralty Arch and south of King Charles I Island, down Whitehall and along Parliament Street.

The King’s Procession will travel around the east and south sides of Parliament Square to Broad Sanctuary to arrive at the Sanctuary of Westminster Abbey, where the Coronation Service will begin at 11 o’clock.