Hunts hit by the big freeze

Hardy hunters on horseback gathered for their traditional meetings amid scenes unchanged for hundreds of years - despite being hit by the big freeze.

The Meynell and South Staffordshire hunt yesterday at Blithfield Hall, in Admaston, near Rugeley
The Meynell and South Staffordshire hunt yesterday at Blithfield Hall, in Admaston, near Rugeley

Hardy hunters on horseback gathered for their traditional meetings amid scenes unchanged for hundreds of years - despite being hit by the big freeze.

The weather meant one of the biggest local hunts broke with tradition by leaving their horses behind.

The Albrighton Woodland Hunt started off on foot from the 350-acre Hagley Park, near Stourbridge, yesterday morning with the horses left in stables.

Around 300 people gathered in front of Hagley Hall as 33 traditional English hunting dogs were prepared ready to lead off.

Master huntsman Peter Swann said: "It was not safe to do the hunt with horses. With the hard ground and the snow it could have led to them injuring themselves.

"It is frustrating but there was nothing we could do about the weather.

"We are so pleased with the turnout and it shows that we still have a lot of support out there."

The hunt followed its traditional path which spans from Bridgnorth down to the River Severn at Stourport and then eastwards to Bromsgrove, north to Wombourne and west back through Claverley.

Meanwhile hundreds gathered for the Meynell and South Staffordshire meet at Blithfield Hall in Admaston, near Rugeley, in keeping with a tradition dating back to the 18th century.

The cold weather prevented any hunting from being done at Blithfield Hall but hundreds of people turned out for the annual meeting anyway.

Hunt secretary Lucy Boulton said: "We couldn't hunt this time because of the conditions but lots of people came to enjoy the spectacle."

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Comments for: "Hunts hit by the big freeze"

Chris Barnett

What a shame, these people will have to find something else to do with their time as opposed to terrifying animals.

stringbag

Well said Chris Barnett they really are sad and why the express and star feel the need to report on theses savages is beyond me.

choppa

Why didn't they turn on their useless horses? Kills a kill!

lydia

i am sorry but those horses are top athletes in their prime who are love their job - look at the picture.They are all loved and no rider would dream of killing their horse.

Matt

Is there no establishments where they can watch some bear baiting?

What will we do without the hunt... the countryside will be overrun with verminous foxes because that is, of course, what they do it for... pest control.....

How can we have a charter of good care enforced for domestic animals such as dogs and cats but yet treat others, like the fox, with such barbarity? Shocking, if the fox hunters didn't have money and influence it would have been banned ages ago.

Cerridwen

-the 'Hunting Act 2004' which made 'hunting with dogs...' unlawful from February 18th 2005, an inconvenient truth that then appears to have been deliberately overlooked by the Express and Star?

-lets hope that the editor and his Snooty Pals responsible for this facile report are suitably chastened by the comments made, so far, by humane law abiding readers and correspondents...but I doubt it.

Sir Lancelot

These barbarians have blood on their hands and deserve no space in the E&S, this type of scum should be publicly executed!

lydia

i am sorry but i think that you all taking things out of portion,no one has mention that the majority of hunts hunt a pre-layed trail

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