The Hunting Office has circulated a document providing advice to Hunts on how they might be able to start Autumn Hunting in a safe and socially responsible manner, whilst operating within the Government Guidelines.

It is essential that all supporters and followers of the College Valley and North Northumberland Hunt respect and adhere to the Covid Guidance and any instructions issued by Hunt officials. We are experiencing a time of national sensitivity and all those participating in Hunting activities must follow the protocols in place while behaving with courtesy and respect towards members of the public, other road users and the local community in which we operate.

As you can appreciate, public perception is critical, and our conduct must take this into consideration as well as minimising the risk of Covid-19 transmission.

All followers must undertake a self-assessment for any Covid-19 symptoms. You should not leave home to participate in any hunting activities if you, or someone in your household, has symptoms of Covid-19. You must continue to follow strict self-isolation for 10 days should you show any symptoms of Covid-19, or 14 days should any member of your household show signs of Covid-19.

Numbers coming out hunting – it may be necessary (dependant on Government advice) to restrict the numbers of Hunt supporters participating on any one particular day (both mounted and on foot). The Government directive states thirty people may assemble, currently.

Mounted Followers – mounted followers should follow the instructions of their Field Master and other Hunt officials at all times and socially distance wherever possible. The field may be requested to stand separately or in small groups to respect social distancing.

Foot and Car Followers – Social distancing should be adhered to at all times whether stationary or walking. Followers should be restricted to discrete group limits (in line with Government guidance) and spread out as much as practicably possible.

Travelling and Parking - horse boxes should be parked in such a way that allows maintenance of any social distancing requirements between riders, drivers, grooms and followers. Where we expect larger numbers, parking instructions and locations will be emailed to subscribers. People should avoid travelling with persons outside their household; if you are in a situation where it is necessary to do so, the appropriate mitigation measures should be in place (such as facemasks).

Meets – The Meets will be at the published time; the Meet will be short and sharp. Please be aware, that we will move off promptly. We will assemble, where we park our trailers, lorries.

Young Followers and Children – We advise that children under twelve are accompanied by a responsible adult when participating in any hunting activities, who should supervise them at all times and ensure they act in line with social distancing guidelines.

Capping and Field Money – There will be no capping on the day. All caps should be paid in advance via BACS to the following Barclays account for CVNNH
Sort Code 20-45-18
Account Number 10502790
Only exact money will be accepted for capping on the day. Money should be placed in the capping box, which will be in the Field Secretary’s car.

Food, Car Boots and Flasks – there should not be any communal food disseminated during the hunting day. Hunt followers should not share flasks with others.

Gates, Fencing and Gate Latches – We advise that Hunt followers should not unnecessarily touch, go through, or lean on fence lines or gates.
Where possible only one person should open and shut a particular gate. Subscribers may be asked by the Field Master to open a gate, wait for the field and ensure it is closed behind them. A “Gate Team” will be in place each day. This small team of followers is responsible for opening and shutting all gates. They should all bring hand sanitiser and gloves with them.

Face Masks and Hand Sanitising Gel – all followers should take hand sanitising gel, protective gloves and a facemask with them in case they are needed to help in an emergency or other situation where social distancing is not possible.

Test and Trace – Details of all those out hunting on any one day will be kept by hunt officials for 21 days. If you are asked for details, please co-operate for NHS Test and Trace purposes.

Social Media - Any social media posts should remain sensitive and respectful to the overall feeling of caution as lockdown is easing. Photographs or video footage used throughout the season should clearly demonstrate that the relevant government guidelines are being adhered to.

It may be necessary to change or cancel meets at short notice or restrict members participating if additional local restrictions are put in place. Please check communications from the hunt regularly and follow instructions as applicable.

If you are unclear about any of the protocols in place, or have queries about coming out hunting, please contact: Andrew Taylor 01890 860285 or andrew.taylor@swintonhill.com

We look forward to a good season ahead. Please make sure you do everything you can to adhere to all Government guidance and instructions issued to you.

Thank you