30 ST CLERE ESTATE, HEVERHAM, KENT, TN15 6NP
by kind invitation of Mr & Mrs S Ecclestone
Parking on ample hardstanding at West Yaldham Farm Kemsing Road, Heverham , Kent TN15 6NN - see map below
Something for everyone ! A chance to sit on top of the Northdowns and look across the Weald of Kent and into East Sussex.
THERE WILL AGAIN BE A NON JUMPING MASTER SO THAT EVERYONE CAN KEEP UP WITH THE HOUNDS.
Miss Jorrock's leaves the quiz a better educated lady!
On Friday 21 st November 2014 Miss Jorrocks attended the Coakham Quiz at Bodle Street Village Hall. There were many teams present and all named after hounds in our pack. Miss Jorrocks was attached to “Tricky Woo”, a team made up of Richard Bramwell, partnered by Jane, Master Lindsay and Howard, Caroline Richardson and Miss Jorrocks. Miss Jorrocks harbours the dark suspicion that she may have been invited as the team Joker.
By about 7.45 p.m. intellectual activities were in full swing and anxious, whispered, debates ensued as we tackled questions, we were later to learn, are faced on a regular basis by GCSE students. Chris Wheeler was the question master – a duty he undertook with the authority of a very senior headmaster, such that Miss Jorrocks wilted under his glare and resolved to try harder in the next round. The trouble was the questions were too hard for a lady of Miss Jorrocks’ brain and she struggled to divide 1 by 2.28 to work out the percentage an acre represents of a hectare which, should her readers wish to know it for future reference, is 40%. Miss Jorrocks arrived at 44%, a figure she considered close enough but not close enough, it turned out, to get a mark.
Many questions had a scientific nexus and Miss Jorrocks considered Howard should lead on this as he is a vet. Poor Howard made good natured protestation but acquitted himself admirably as did other team members, notably Jane on music, Richard on geology, and Caroline and Lindsay on all manner of topics. Miss Jorrocks made a reasonable fist of Latin names and we finished the day at the top of the middle. Not enough to win a prize, but honour satisfied.
The evening was broken by an interval for an excellent supper provided by the Supporters’ Club, which provided a welcome rest for our over worked brains.
Supper over we faced the “guest round” provided by Martin Hole who chose, on this occasion, to major on beavers. Beavers! This confirms to Miss Jorrocks that the Hole residence, at Montague, suffers from rural isolation relieved only by excellent and extremely fast internet access. The questions were so specialised that a mystified quiet settled upon the room and the use of random guesswork was immediately deployed. As always, though, Martin left us better educated than before and Miss Jorrocks now knows that there are 8 English rivers with beaver populations, the longest beaver dam in the world is 850 metres long, and beavers have internal testicles. The latter point not being a topic of conversation for the dinner table.
Thus better educated than before, and buoyed up by an evening of convivial company, Miss Jorrocks set off for home and to begin her preparations for a day on the Downs on Sunday.
Miss Jorrocks writes:
On Sunday November 9th hounds met at Attwood Farm, Bodle Street - the guests of the Petrides and Godwin families.
This is a very traditional meet in the Coakham card as our hosts are kind enough to organise our “Remembrance Meet”.
A field of about thirty assembled in the field behind the house to enjoy savouries and stirrup cup in generous proportion. Miss Jorrocks sampled many delights and was soon glowing from not one, but two, whisky macs having been informed, by someone in the know, that this was a “three port day”.
Socialising complete Master Clare led us in our own particular form of remembrance where we remember not just our fallen human heroes but the animals that have served in war both in the past and today. It was an almost uncanny silence as hounds and horses fell completely quiet – not a snuffle, bark, whimper or stamping of hoof interrupted the observation of a minute’s silence and Miss Jorrocks firmly believes that one could have heard the fabled pin drop.
Solemnities over we set off to hunt - a day made up of three hunts behind three quarry captained by Adrian. The ground was deep and wet and we were lucky indeed to be out - confirming that our farmers and landowners really are the most tolerant and kind people.
Despite the warming glow of her multiple stirrup cups Miss Jorrocks determined that she would confine her jumping to the strictly necessary and was soon teamed up with Master Blagg bringing his best point to pointer along carefully in the rear. Miss Jorrocks was also soon to learn that this may not have been her most judicious decision as Master Blagg, despite following on quietly, was up for the odd big jump. As he set off across a big field towards a large railed hedge Miss Jorrocks was obliged to draw his urgent attention to the gate in the corner. Master Blagg appeared deaf to her protestations and worse her mare, detecting hesitancy up on the bridge, set sail in Master Blagg’s hoof prints at an ever increasing canter towards the hedge. Miss Jorrocks sat, a mixture of terror and horror, as the hedge grew closer and was a complete passenger as her mare sailed over. A smooth landing ensued and Miss Jorrock’s mare jiggled her back firmly in to her saddle further underlining her point that things go better for the both of them if Miss Jorrocks refrains from “doing riding”.
As regular readers know, Miss Jorrocks is a lady of a certain age and of a nervous disposition, and she was rather alarmed by this turn of events and was therefore delighted to team up for the rest of the day with Tracey, a young and fit person, on her pony capable of doing all manner of gates. Thus Miss Jorrocks was able to complete her day safe from the danger of any unnecessary jumping!
Three hunts completed we returned to the boxes where Miss Jorrocks believes she washed a goodly percentage of East Sussex from her mare. Fortunately the mud, though much in abundance, was the very washable sort and soon we were at tea in the Godwins’ lovely farmhouse the history of which has been traced back to 1460. A delicious spread of chilli con carne, hot pies and remembrance cake awaited us and clearly much preparation had been completed prior to our arrival. A really lovely end to a wonderful day.
Miss Jorrocks writes:
On Monday 3 rd November, St Hubert’s Day, hounds met at Montague, Hankham – the guests of the Glessing and Hole families.
We have marked St Hubert’s day for the past twenty seasons, and always at Montague unless the weather was so foul that mounted hunting was impossible.
Monday dawned wet and windy and gloom settled over Miss Jorrocks’ household as she prepared for another day in the rain. Such despondency was short lived as she brightened at the prospect of hunting on Montague, one of her favourite hunting places.
A small field of about thirty assembled and were promptly lashed by another torrential downpour. St Hubert must have been in very bad humour indeed! The St Hubert’s day blessing was given by the Reverend Albert Ginno who usually seems oblivious to the elements, but today sported a barbour rain coat over his clerical vestments and stood under the shelter of an umbrella held by a kindly foot follower.
The reverend’s homily was both poignant and pertinent as he remembered the late John “Potto” Glessing who was our host for nineteen seasons and no longer with us to enjoy the twentieth. The reverend spoke of Potto’s love of the countryside and nature, which set the foundations of the Montague we enjoy today – a tradition carried on by Martin Hole whose benevolence knew no bounds as he allowed us to gallop about on his impeccable pasture in the pouring rain.
Hounds blessed, we set off to hunt thus forging a new link in the chain that stretches back fourteen centuries to St Hubert himself, who hunted deer with his St Hubert hounds - the one time name of the Bloodhound.
Three hunts made up the day and there were, Miss Jorrocks is delighted to report, some “serious fences” several of which she attempted successfully herself – clearly emboldened by the hand of St Hubert!
The ground was wet and at times deep. Miss Jorrocks only hopes that the hoof print fairies will visit under the cover of darkness and poor Martin Hole will be none the wiser of the holes in his beautiful turf.
The day finished with a rousing cheer for the late Potto before the Huntsman blew for home and we went in to a truly excellent tea of Chilli con Carne and hot pies.