A PONY which was found abandoned at the side of the road has found a new home at an equine college.

The pony, named Noo-Noo, was one of five ponies in a roadside abandonment case that were named after Teletubbies characters by their rescuers.

After being rescued by the RSPCA, Noo-Noo found temporary residency at Middlesbrough-based Robinson’s Equi-Teach yard, but has since been moved to Askham Bryan College’s centre in Stewart Park in the town.

It is the campus’s first-ever rescue pony. It has been looked after by the college’s students since the summer, then moved onto campus in late December.

Noo-Noo has joined the three other resident Shetland ponies at the centre and is to be looked after by the college’s animal care and management students.

Tom Allen, level three animal management student, said: “I am really pleased Noo-Noo has moved on campus.

“It has given us the opportunity to learn more about horses and their care as part of our studies, as well as gain skills in responsibility and compassion.”

The future is also bright for the pony.

After a year of being fostered at Stewart Park, Noo-Noo will be broken in and available for a permanent home.

Catherine Fairburn, lecturer and level three equine course manager, said: “We’re proud to have welcomed the college’s first rescue pony to Stewart Park.

“We believe that, following a year of care with our students, Noo-Noo will be in fantastic health and ready to move on.”

In the five-year period between 2009 and 2014, the RSPCA received calls from just short of 500,000 people concerned about either neglected or abandoned horses.

Over the same timeframe, the charity said that the number of horses being collected by its inspectors doubled - a 108 per cent increase.

Stewart Park is York-based Askham Bryan College’s Middlesbrough centre, located in the heart of the Middlesbrough park.

It is one of the college’s eight campuses across the north of England, which also include Scarborough, Newcastle, Newton Rigg and Saltaire.

Opened in September 2017 following a successful Heritage Lottery Fund grant, the Grade-II listed Central Lodge in Stewart Park has been transformed into a state-of-the-art animal management and land-based teaching facility.

The centre and its educational hub will host a range of events throughout the year, and students have access to 120 acres of parkland, including mature woodland, an arboretum on the southern side and two lakes which provide habitat for a variety of species.