A leading British horsewoman has described the terrifying moment when her horsebox was attacked by a gang of armed migrants in Calais.
Lucy Phillips, 26, of Solihull near Birmingham, was returning from a world championship equestrian event with her parents when their route to the ferry terminal was blocked by felled trees.
Up to 10 migrants then jumped out of the bushes on the roadside and threatened them with bats and tree branches.
Dressed head to toe in black, the young men started hitting the side of the horsebox and then smashed a passenger window.
When Miss Phillips jumped into the back of the truck to calm her horse down, she heard the migrants trying to get in through the side door.
The horsewoman, who represents Britain in equestrian vaulting, pulled the handle of the door towards her to stop the young men from getting inside.
She told her father Bill, 68, to beep the horn, which he did until French riot police arrived.
Her mother Liz, 63, suffered cuts to her face and her father received cuts to his arm.
Miss Phillips was on her way back from representing Britain in equestrian vaulting, commonly described as gymnastics on horseback, in Le Mans when her horsebox was set upon at 1.30am.
The rider, who also works as a model, decided to speak out to highlight the increase in violent attacks carried out by migrants living in The Jungle camp in Calais.
She said: ‘It was so scary and it seems that over the past couple of months the violence has got worse.
‘It’s horrendous and beyond belief. It’s not just the big trucks they target, they don’t seem to care who they attack anymore.
‘I don’t want to scare people. But anyone going out there needs to be so careful on the way back. We’ve vowed never to travel back at night again.’