First written record of ponies on Dartmoor in AD 1012. The then Bishop of of Crediton owned ponies and early manorial records show that the ponies were not broken in. All were branded and many carried ear markings, many of which are in use today.
In the mid 1800’s Dartmoor Pack Ponies were used to transport tin, wool and granite to local stannary (trading) towns.
In the early 1900’s the Dartmoor Pony claimed a Royal connection. Prince Edward, later Edward VIII, visited Dartmoor on a frequent basis. He kept and bred Dartmoor Ponies near to Princetown, where he crossed them with Arab stallions to produce a finer polo pony.
In 1950, there were several thousand ponies, today we have approximately 1,500 and only a small proportion of these are the native Dartmoor Pony. The decline is due to a change in marketplace and legislation.
Hoof-prints found on Dartmoor during an archaeological dig were found to be over 3,500 years old. Cattle, sheep and ponies have been on Dartmoor since the Bronze Age