Golden Valley Hunt

The hunt as we know it today was formed in 1945 by the late Mr Vivian R. Bishop of Sheepcote and the Hon. Mrs Oscar Guest of Cabalva. This original Mastership was to last 36 years until the death of Mrs Guest, Mr Bishop went on to become Britain’s longest serving master of any one pack, passing away in August 2001 in his 56th consecutive Season as Joint-Master and having spent 50 seasons hunting hounds. The hounds were kennelled at Mr Bishop’s home – Sheepcote Farm, Clifford – since the hunt’s inception and until the death of Hunt President Mrs Hazel Bishop MBE in 2010. The Golden Valley may be a relatively “young” hunt by today’s standards, but hounds have been resident in the area for many years. Between the wars, Captain Nugent Hope of Whitney Court, hunted the country as a private pack with the country on loan from The Radnor & West Herefordshire Hunt. Prior to WW1, there were several private ‘Squire’ packs hunting the area which included, Ralph Baskerville Esq. of Clyro Court, the de Wintons of Maesllwch Castle and Mr Partridge of Bacton. The later was information when in 1914 the hunt named itself ‘The Golden Valley Hunt’ and moved the kennels to Dorstone in the heart of the Golden Valley itself. (for further reference to the history of The Golden Valley Hunt see Hounds of The Golden Valley 1907-1994, by Richard Pantell Esq, privately published). Today the hunt is run under the Joint-Mastership of Mr. D. Foxley and Mr. M. Phillips. Other former masters are Lord Portman, Mr Stephen Southall, Mr & Mrs J. Bally, Miss Elizabeth Thorneycroft, Mr Christopher Davies, Mrs. Charlotte Drake, Ms. A. Greenow, Mrs. R. Lloyd, Mr. Steve Lloyd, Mr. G. Poulton, and Mr. C. Thomson. Many great horses and riders have steamed from this hunting country including Speylove – winner of the 1959 Horse & Hound Cup at Stratford; Proud Socks – winner of the 1960 Cheltenham National Hunt Race; Humorous & Velvet Coat – winners of 36 hunter Chases and Point -to-Points between them. Riders included the renown veteran showman Mr Bill Bryan and the Bryan family together with event riders Lesley and Graham Law.