The long-serving secretary of the Bicester with Whaddon Chase died on 30 October, after a long fight with cancer.

Robert and his devoted wife and constant hunting field companion Melanie settled in the Bicester country in 1983.

Bearing his illness with remarkable fortitude, Robert was always impeccably turned out during his 26 years as the hunt’s secretary.

Hunt chairman Christopher Hodgson said: “His ethos that ‘people come out for fun’, quoted in last week’s H&H, personified everything about an outstanding person.

“So many owe their introduction and ongoing passion for foxhunting to Robert, who will be remembered for his impeccable manners. He will leave a huge hole in so many lives.”

This article was first published in Horse & Hound (4 November, ’10)