Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Next time you raise a glass - drink to our landowners and farmers

We have been frightfully lucky in this corner of the UK and dodged the worst of this winter's storms so far. Nonetheless the ground is wet. It is softer than a brush that has been soaked in "Comfort" and some other packs have had to cancel meets but the EKHwWS has such cracking landowners that not only do they ply us with strong drink and super sausage rolls but they allow us to hunt trails across their drenched land - what a set of heroes!

On the subject of heroes, we are all aware of the devastation that has been wrought in the north country - stock drowned despite the very best efforts of farmers and shepherds; bridges collapsed; roads washed away; winter forage destroyed by inundation. How can we help? There are three groups that deserve our support and who accept donations in money or in kind:

Forage Aid - pledge money, forage or transport - this is a group of farmers who appreciate the heartbreak of the situation in the north. Website HERE

Team Rubicon - ex-service personnel bringing their extraordinary skills into the areas devastated by floods - people who have served, not a few injured or crippled who are given a sense of purpose as they help those whose lives have been affected by the floods.  Their website is HERE

Khalsa Aid - a brilliant Sikh organisation that did a huge amount of work on the Somerset levels and are still there. They were in Cumbria while it was still raining the first time. These people are terrific.  Website HERE

Back to the day! What a super meet - our hosts not only provided much of the day's country but also gave us all a most generous meet! Luckily it is not possible to manage a camera and a very (VERY) large drink with only two hands so some of the pictures are not blurred!

With the first trail laid from the Alders, hounds had to work hard in the wind and the sodden conditions but then on the escarpment they picked up one of our trails and sang briefly.

Thankfully, at the end of the day, there was expert advice on horsemanship to analyse the jumping styles through the day - the conclusion? At present one experienced mounted follower is offering sufficient monies to keep this a secret!

Also at the end of the day was splendid "tea" - thank you "M".

The Stern

  • What/who was at the end of yesterday's rainbow?
  • Who was nearly caught out "making use of the back of the truck" by an off-road motorcycle club?
These and many more may be found at The Gather's NEW gallery pages - HERE - all of the images have now uploaded.

. . .  and, as ever, a cracking hunt tea when we meet in this part of the country .

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