To be read before taking part in Drag hunting with Anglesey Draghounds.
It is essential for your own safety and enjoyment, that you have an understanding of how the hunting day is arranged. If you have any questions or problems during the day, ask. This may be a Master, who will wear a red coat, or a senior member of the hunt, who may wear distinctive hunt buttons and / or a blue collar.
You should understand as with all horse riding, there are risks involved and knowing what goes on and what the rules and regulations are will help you to manage those risks.
- The Hunt Masters and Huntsman wear red coats.
- The Masters run the days hunting and must be listened to at all times.
- At the start of the day the Masters will introduce themselves. He or she will lead the field (you are a member of the field) and it is ESSENTIAL THAT YOU LISTEN TO HIS / HER INSTRUCTIONS AT ALL TIMES AND ON NO ACCOUNT MUST YOU OVERTAKE HIM / HER.
- If you hear an instruction being passed through the field such as 'beware rabbit holes', you must pass that instruction back to those behind you.
- You should at all times follow the route taken by the Field Master, or if you are not jumping, follow the instructions of a senior member who will direct you to the alternative route.
- You should try to keep up with the field, but if delayed, try to find another rider or foot follower who will direct you.
- The Huntsman rides ahead of the Field Master with his Whippers-in. They control the hounds and must not be interfered with in any way. LEAVE THE HOUNDS ALONE.
- Only jump obstacles jumped by the Field Master.
- Do not commit yourself at a jump until the person in front has cleared it.
- Always report any damage to a fence to the Master at the end of the line.
- Never overrun the hounds and keep an eye open for any hounds that are coming up behind.
- If the hounds are brought past you, always turn your horse to face them, to minimise the risk of your horse kicking them or standing on them.
- If your horse is unruly or ill-natured with other horses, keep it away from the rest of the field at all times. The use of a red ribbon in the tail to indicate a kicker should make the field give a wide berth, but it does not absolve you, the rider from ensuring that it does not get into a position to kick out at other horses.
- Riders must report any falls from their horse, whether injured or not. Only you can decide if you are fit to continue or not.
- Riders who cannot control their horse may be asked to leave the hunting field. Children who fall may not be allowed to continue if there is doubt as to their ability to continue. The decision of the Field Master is final and will be based on his/her judgement as to whether you are a danger to yourself and/or others.
- You should have third party liability insurance, BHS Gold membership or full Countryside Alliance membership will give you this.
- Only you will know if you have sufficient riding ability and a suitable horse to drag hunt.
- Only you will know if you have the required ability to jump the jumps or ditches.
- Remember that there is no need for you to tackle any jumps or ditches if you do not wish to do so, there is always an alternative route which will usually be lead by a senior member of the hunt.
- Care of a farmer's stock and crops ALWAYS takes priority over our enjoyment. It must never be forgotten that without the goodwill of farmers, the Hunt would not exist and no sport would be enjoyed by the members.
ETIQUETTE AND CONDUCT
At the Meet
- Arrive at the meet with enough time to pay your cap and get yourself ready for a noon departure.
- On arrival at the meet, as a matter of courtesy, say 'Good Morning' to the Masters, Huntsman and Whippers-in.
- Please park sensibly. You should make sure that you are not blocking a lane or driveway. You should not do anything that may cause congestion or inconvenience to other road users.
- Seek out the Secretary to pay your cap. Do not leave it to him/her to come and seek you out.
- Thank the farmer whose land we use, if you know who he/she is and thank the person who has provided the stirrup cup.
- Hunting is a sport to enjoy. The more people you talk to at the meet, the happier the atmosphere. Remember to greet people on foot and try to make those out for the first time feel welcome.
- At the close of the meet, everyone should make a point of seeing the Masters to thank them for the day's hunting and to say "Goodnight".
During the Hunt
- On the way to the lines, thank those car users who slow down or stop to allow us to pass.
- Make sure that you stay behind the Field Master, Huntsman and Whippers-in.
- Thank people who are kind enough to hold a gate whilst you ride through.
- Never fail to thank a farmer or farm worker who may be holding a gate or helping in some other way. Not only is it discourteous to ride past ignoring them, or taking their assistance for granted, but without their help and permission, we would not be able to hunt.
- When jumping hunt fences, remember that nothing annoys the other members of the field more than someone who barges in. Wait your turn. This also applies to gateways.
- If you horse is a persistent refuser, go around, the farmer will not thank you for churning up his field.
- Gents should wear white or fawn breeches, black boots, black or tweed coat, white hunting stock, silk hat, bowler or velvet hunting cap.
- Ladies should wear light coloured breeches, black boots, black coat or tweed jacket, white hunting stock (coloured permissible with tweed), bowler or velvet hunting cap.
- Children (under 17 years of age) should wear the same as ladies, but jodhpurs and jodhpur boots are permissible.
- All should be encouraged to wear hats and body protectors to the current recommended standards.
- Remember, all the farmers get out of allowing us to cross their land is the spectacle of the hunt.
Don't let us let them down by untidy turnout.