A beer-loving Shetland pony that lives in a pub has won the hearts and minds of local residents, who have elected him Mayor of Cockington.
With politicians often attempting to appeal to the general public, it would seem Patrick the Pony has nailed what is needed of a public image and has since ascended to office.
Residents of Cockington in Devon piled their support behind the Guinness-drinking Shetland pony, who is frequently spotted enjoying his favourite tipple at a local pub.
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Patrick even enjoys the life of a local celebrity with a special drinking corner exclusively for the pony in his local pub, The Drum.
Good deeds and community support were already at the heart of Patrick, a therapy pony who first rose to prominence when owner Kirk Petrakis introduced him to The Drum locals.
Frequent attendees of the pub and those present at The Drum during the pandemic may have spotted Patrick working his charm.
Petrakis would bring Patrick to the pub in the hopes of using him as a therapy device, with the pony now spending plenty of time visiting recovery groups, hospitals and mental health wards.
He also attends specialised schools and wakes to bring comfort to those that need it.
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Now hundreds have backed a successful petition to mark Patrick the Pony as Mayor of Cockington after previous incumbent, Don Mills, died in 2019.
Patrick is now the unofficial "Mayor" of Cockington, with the tongue-in-cheek online petition growing in support of the Shetland pony, who had a mayoral garb made up for him.
Owners Kirk and Hannah Petrakis made Patrick his very own special chain of office with lights and Purple Poppy emblem too.
Local politicians also appeared to brush shoulders with the new mayor in a networking event between old hands of politics and new hooves of mayorship.
Local MP Kevin Foster and local councillor Andrew Barrand were both present to support the day along with local residents, many of which were responsible for Patrick's ascension to the role of mayor.
Owner Kirk, speaking to The Mirror, said: "We think Patrick The Pony has made history by becoming the first pony Mayor in the UK."
The Shetland pony has yet to make an acceptance speech or reveal plans for the area, but it doesn't seem all that likely that his new role will give him any formal powers.
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