Celebrating hunting

Some former MFHs grow their hair and go to Glastonbury, others start websites, according to James Barclay. Mr Barclay, whose stints as an amateur huntsman include 12 seasons with the Fitzwilliam, has created what he hopes will be an online hub for hunting people all over the world. ‘It’s not just for hardened foxhunters,’ he says. ‘It will contain history as well as up-to-date news and articles from abroad and I hope will be of interest to those who’d simply like to know more.’ From September 20 until Christmas, a year’s subscription will cost £12.99-it will be £15 thereafter (www.fortheloveofhuntingengland.com).

Another former MFH has written a book. Alastair Jackson, who hunted the South Dorset, among other packs, and was director of the MFHA, has collaborated with former Horse & Hound editor Michael Clayton to produce A Short History of Foxhunting (Merlin Unwin, £14.99). With sketches by Mr Jackson, the pocket-sized volume charts the history of foxhunting from William the Conqueror’s time to today’s ‘ludicrous legislation’.

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The two authors are giving a talk on September 26 at 7pm at Melton Mowbray Cattle Market, Leicestershire. Tickets cost £8 (01584 877456; www.merlinunwin.co.uk). Finally, the fox itself, without which there would be no hunting, is celebrated in a festival of music and poetry in Cattistock, Dorset on October 4-6.

There will be a performance of the oratorio The Fox That Walked on Water, composed by Cattistock resident Nicholas Morris, plus horn-blowing contests, folk music and a quiz. Tickets for the Fox Festival are available from Merrily Harpur (01300 320064; www.cattistockfestival.org).

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