SIR – Many Worcester News readers will have been shocked at the recent two-week spree of vandalism at Worcester Racecourse ‘Course counts cost of vandals’ spree’ (Worcester News, May 27).

However, no matter how deplorable many will consider this damage to property to be, it pales into insignificance when compared with the damage caused to living creatures by the racecourse and by the horseracing industry as a whole.

In the past five years, 26 horses have died or been put to death at Worcester Racecourse after suffering appalling injuries, such as broken legs and necks.

According to the animal protection organisation Animal Aid, about 18,000 foals are born into the closely related British and Irish racing industries each year, yet only about 40 per cent go on to become racers.

Many of the ‘failures’ are shot at stables or killed for meat, or repeatedly change hands in a downward spiral of neglect.

More than 7,500 horses leave British racing every year, but only a comparatively small proportion are properly provided for and most end up being sent for slaughter.

Of those that do make the grade, more than 400 are fatally injured on racecourses every year.

I used to be a big fan of horseracing untilI discovered this information.

I now no longer attend or bet on horse races and I would urge others not to do so either, so that this appalling death industry fades away through lack of financial support.