Those early season nerves at the meet are all too familiar… As is the moment you look across to see someone a sixth of your age and a quarter of your size, on a pony with barely-there legs merrily enjoying the occassion.

And then there is that heart-sinking moment when your 16.1hh “experienced hunter” is turning himself inside out at an insignificant set of rails, and that pony you spotted earlier sails over in front of you.

All hail for the budding thrusters of the future — they certainly know how to put us in our place…

Oliver Gillman

Hi , These are some pictures of our at the time 4 year old son Oliver Gillman and his 26 year old pony Tuffty enjoying their first days hunting with the Blackmore and Sparkford Vale last season . Julie Gillman
All the gear: four-year-old Oliver Gillman and his 26-year-old pony Tuffty enjoying their first day hunting with the Blackmore and Sparkford Vale last season.

Martha German

8 Martha German metatdat wont copy to image ask rich if needed

Fine style: Martha German shows the field how it’s done with her smart dun pony.

Livvia Krajnyk

6 year old Livvia Krajnyk on Belchford Gwenno Six-year-old Livvia Krajnyk gears up for a day out on Belchford Gwenno.

Continued below…

Kathleen Curtin and Isobel Curtin

Sisters, on the left Kathleen Curtin on Milly with their grandfather Pat Curtin & Isobel Curtin on Freddy All waiting for The County Clare Hunt to arrive in Kilmihil Co Clare Sister act: Kathleen Curtin on Milly and Isobel Curtin on Freddy wait for the County Clare Hunt to arrive in Kilmihil, Co Clare, with with their grandfather Pat Curtin.

Holly and Seth

Hi, This is my daughter Holly and her best friend Seth on their ponies Star and Bart. Picture was taken when they had both just turned two at the Chatsworth House meet with the Barlow Hunt. Worthy of a pairs’ competition: Holly and her best friend Seth, both two, on their ponies Star and Bart at the Chatsworth House meet with the Barlow Hunt.

Freddie Shutler

3 Freddie Shutler IMG_1389Freddie Shutler’s legs might not quite reach the bottom of the saddle flap, but he looks ready to get out autumn hunting with the Kimblewick.

Molly Oman

2 Attachment-1

Bad hair day? Molly Oman’s pony’s mane is certainly not holding them back… Look out for mention of Henry the super hunting pony in the feature about marvellous hunting ponies in H&H’s hunting special issue, on sale from 22 October.

Sasha Lawes

1 WP_20150221_012

Mud, mud, glorious… Sasha Lawes would have been frantically searching for the vanish after her day out with the Chiddingfold, Leconfield and Cowdray last season, however it hasn’t deterred her and she is all set for the season ahead.

Hunting mad? Don’t miss this week’s 20-page hunting special of Horse & Hound magazine, where we look at some of the best hunting ponies around, hunting literature that you won’t be able to put down PLUS the full hunting directory