Covid precautions are to the fore on a day with this popular, well-organised pack of bloodhounds, but so are big hedges and a great deal of fun, reports William Cursham
Forty years ago, a north Nottinghamshire farmer named Peter Boddy set up a pack of bloodhounds. At the time, the concept of “hunting the clean boot” was relatively new. Only a few packs existed, including the North Warwickshire and the Isle of Man, from which Peter obtained draft hounds.
The new pack was kennelled at his farm, located near the village of Caunton about 10 miles to the north-west of Newark. The hunt took its name from the farm, Readyfield Farm, and over the next few years established a reputation as a real “kick-on” pack, tackling the biggest of country across Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire and Derbyshire
During one of his first seasons, Peter Boddy paid a visit to John Bealby, who farmed at Broomhill Grange, near Edwinstowe, a few miles from Caunton.
“I remember Peter came to see us and asked to cross one of our farms. We said ‘yes’ and as usual as he was leaving, he said, ‘Oh, you will come with us won’t you?’ recounted Robert Bealby, John’s son. “Father had just bought a new horse and he rode that and I had his old one. It was the best day’s hunting of my life and I kept going after that.”
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