‘…Hunting with bloodhounds is one of the best-kept secrets in the British countryside…’
Established in 1992 by Joint Masters Philip and Wendy Broughton, The Cranwell Bloodhounds is a welcoming, privately owned hunting group that hunts the ‘clean boot’, or the natural scent of man. The group follows in a tradition that can be traced back over 500 years.
For his new book, author and photographer Matt Limb OBE spent a season with the hunt and spoke with the core members of the group, most of whom have devoted many seasons to making the Cranwell Bloodhounds a success.
Volunteer runners – known as ‘quarry’ – provide that all-important scent, and each week’s course is planned in advance, to make for a thrilling hunt. Many of the riders have joined the hunt from an early age, or been encouraged to join in by the enthusiastic participation of family members.
Those wishing to enjoy the thrill of the hunt as spectators only can follow the line in their own vehicles. A special road crew follows the hunt, to aid with road crossings and even round up the odd horse that has gotten away.
Matt’s vibrant images capture the action across the season and give a sense of the combined efforts and the enjoyment involved.
Work continues year round, with Kennel Huntsman Frank Goddard working with the horses and hounds to get them ready for November. The Sunday meet in winter sees riders and hounds hunting runners through the picturesque Lincolnshire countryside by agreement with local landowners. A hunt ball at the end of the season is an opportunity to celebrate the group’s hard efforts and their special camaraderie.
The Cranwell Bloodhounds by Matt Limb is published by Wild Tweed Limited and is available directly from www.wildtweed.com