Founded in 2015, This is Hunting UK (TiHUK) works proactively to promote the beneficial aspects of foxhunting in the United Kingdom. As TiHUK grew rapidly, younger participants expressed the desire for their own organization, and Young Hunters UK was created. Joint chairmen Will Berry and Rosie Finney shared their backgrounds and goals for the nascent club.
Will Berry and hounds. Photo courtesy of Will Berry.
Will, 15, grew up in a field sports family "who partake in shooting, fishing, coursing, and of course hunting. The first contact I had with hunting and hounds was when I was just a day old, and I have followed hounds ever since." In his final year at school, he has produced a video presentation about foxhunting and debated the subject. Will said, "Our aim with Young Hunters UK is to promote and educate people about what hunting really is, and try to rid the negative ideas commonly associated with our activities. For publicity, we have a Facebook page and I have attended shows and events throughout the summer, promoting Young Hunters whilst also promoting This Is Hunting UK."
Rosie Finney in the field. Photo courtesy of Rosie Finney.
Joint chair Rosie Finney,16, also grew up in a sporting household. "I first started hunting with hounds when I was two months old (only because I was born in July). I hunt every weekend with our local packs and sometimes even go before school. I have also helped with many fundraisers, and I help my dad to create videos of each hunting season, in order to raise money for our two local hunts." She has two cousins in hunt service, one a huntsman, and her great-grandfather also carried the horn.
James Barclay, ex-MFH at five British packs and chairman of TiHUK, heard about a school project Rosie did about foxhunting and asked her to help out. "He asked me if I was interested in starting a group and I, of course, said yes. Before the group began, James invited me to do a speech at the Burton Hunt open day, which I was very honored to do, and I got lots of positive feedback from this."
Will added, "We are going to have a supporters club and we have a new badge on the way [above]. We would love to hear from North American foxhunters should they wish to join us."
To learn more about Young Hunters UK, visit their Facebook page.