He was only a horse – but it was hard to believe as I listened to the breathless accounts of the end of Desert Orchid. ‘Died as he lived’ and other meaningless platitudes surrounded his departure to that greater steeplechase beyond where all fences are cleared and the water jumps run in cool fresh springs. Given the opportunity, he might well have taken time this evening to win the Grand Final of Mastermind or have a cameo role in the shouting match which followed the ‘Will they, won’t they?’ debacle in The Archers. I was on the motorway and I had to turn it off. Can’t stand conflict – that’s my problem.