I had only walked a few metres when I spotted the Foxdenton Gin trade stand and I was immediately drawn straight in! I've been wanting to try Martha's Marvellous Jumping Juice for a while. Super-stylish, Queen of side-saddle; Lady Martha Sitwell has to be one of my favourite people to photograph. (I must admit to a girl crush too!) This new gin is a collaboration between Lady Martha Sitwell and Foxdenton Gin also supporting spinal research. I was not disappointed; warming with a spicy kick, it is the perfect hip flask filler for hunting on a winter's day. The temperature at the festival was far from a winter's day though and as temperatures soared, Foxdenton's refreshing Lemon & Cucumber Gin was the perfect choice.
Refreshed, I made my way around the various show rings. I was pleased to see one of my local Bloodhound packs; Coakham bloodhounds having a very successful day.
I wandered over to the Inter Hunt relay where crowds were gathered to support their local packs in a knock out style competition. The course required a need for speed and also control and this made excellent viewing. The Grove and Rufford were victorious, taking the cup and the £1000 prize money, closely followed by the Essex Farmers and Union 1 and the Cotswold in third.
I then watched the Ladies Side Saddle Horse in the equine rings. This was a real pleasure to watch and all competitors were immaculately turned out. Winner of the class was Mrs Katrine Hirst riding Noble Gladiator.
The festival hosted many quality trade stands and I drooled over the HiHo Silver Jewellery. I finished the day watching the junior Inter Hunt Relay who certainly kept spectators on the edge of their seats! It was fast, hairy at times with a few near misses and a great display of pony club skills! All competitors showed great team spirit. Congratulations to Woodland Pytchley Hunt PC 1 for taking the win in spectacular style!
Here follows some more of my favourite photos from the day.