Who will be crowned the best hunt horn-blower?

  • The names of those vying to win national horn-blowing competition the Horse & Hound Challenge Cup, at hunting’s ‘big night out’, the Dubarry Horn & Hound Ball, have been revealed.

    The 10 representatives from hunts all over Britain are:

    Martyn Arnold (Gelligaer Farmers)

    Shaun Marles (Radnor & West Hereford)

    Daniel Cherriman (Pytchley)

    Gareth Bow (Brocklesby)

    John Nicholson (Dulverton West)

    Andrew Higgins (Tynedale)

    Joe Tesseyman (Essex & Suffolk)

    Charles Frampton MFH (Heythrop)

    Bertie Alexander MH (Stowe Beagles)

    Guy Thomas MH (RAC Beagles)

    The highly competitive horn-blowing competition, which is supported by the Kingston Blount Shoot, is the highlight of the Dubarry Horn & Hound Ball, which takes place at Cheltenham Racecourse on 22 April. The judges this year are Nigel Peel, joint-master and huntsman of the North Cotswold, and 2016 winner James Pearson of the Cury.

    The ball, which attracts hunting people from all over the country, is held to raise funds for the Hunt Staff Benefit Society. As well as the horn-blowing competition, it features a “money can’t buy” auction – featuring a nomination to Tomatillo, a clone of William Fox-Pitt’s Badminton winner Tamarillo — a champagne reception sponsored by Pol Roger, dinner and dancing to 29 Fingers.

    Sam Butler, chairman of the ball committee and chairman of the Warwickshire Hunt, said: “It is wonderful to have Dubarry on board again this year for an event that has become established in the hunting calendar.

    “We are also very pleased to have continuing support from Pol Roger, Lycetts and the Coniston Hotel who are among many of our generous sponsors.

    “The night raises all-important funds for the charity, with over £100,000 raised so far, but above all it has also proved to be a very good party.

    “It is hunting’s big night out, where people from all over Britain and Ireland come together to celebrate our sport, and we are building on the success of previous years to make it better than ever this year.

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    “We look forward to seeing as many representatives of different hunts as possible at Cheltenham on 22 April for another special night.”

    Tickets cost £100, with corporate and VIP packages available. For further details and booking forms, contact Lizzie Dyer on HSBS2@mfha.co.uk or 01285 653001.

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