Whilst we had made a start, this young Huntsman was not finding life that easy in the early stages, as we were faced with the nightmare of cloudy mornings, not a scrap of dew and hounds looking at you as though you had totally lost the plot! Certainly, this was not good for the moral, as it is well known that scent is more than likely going to be abysmal on these occasions! So with a fair amount of grit and determination it was a matter of pulling oneself together, and being patient enough to wait for things to improve. Not easy for anyone at the sharp end, and even more so for one that was young, enthusiastic and wanting to prove that you and your hounds are the best! This meant that I had to prove to all the critics that more than anything, being totally chilled out and relaxed about these situations was my strongest point! There did not appear anything too wrong with the hounds, they were trying their hardest. All we needed was for the weather to change and by the middle of September it did. The rain arrived, ground conditions became more bearable and we soon got into our stride. What a relief! By the end of September hounds were beginning to hunt up together and their drive was improving. Although they were a rather mixed lot, it was rewarding to see them demonstrating that they could do the job rather well. About this time, out of the blue, we received an invitation from my father to take the hounds to Brent Pelham. To be asked to bring our hounds to hunt the Puckeridge country so early in my Mastership was quite something and to make the day more special it was to be followed by their Puppy Show. Due to some very late puppies and various other reasons they had not been able to have it earlier in the year. Happily this was the first of many visits with either with the Essex and Suffolk or the Fitzwilliam.
To read more, click here to subscribe or if you are already a subscriber, please log in!