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THE BEAGLES HAVE LANDED; Historic Boxing Day hunt at Holme.

TWO beagles groups are to meet for a big Boxing Day event.

The Colne Valley Beagles and the Holme Valley Beagles will join together at The Fleece at Holme.

And they plan to hunt on the fields and moors around the village.

There have been talKs of a merger between the two historic hunts but nothing has been finalised.

But James Swanbury, joint master of the Colne Valley Beagles, said: "It is an historic event and the two PACKs are co-operating very closely without actually merging.

"The Boxing Day joint meet is a milestone and we hope our supporters will appreciate it". Legislation which banned hunting came in to force in 2005 but beagle PACKs do still meet on a regular basis.

They often follow trails, in which scents are laid across the moors, but are also allowed to hunt rabbits.

Mr Swanbury said: "There are exceptions to the legislation and we are still allowed to hunt. "The land we use is a shooting area and we liaise closely with the GAMEKEEPERs. There could be a hare has been wounded by the shooters and we are allowed to hunt that.

"I hope that the event is not marred by protests. It is a very civilised event and many of our followers, who are on foot, are elderly people.

"We have met with protestors in the past and many are perfectly behaved, although holding strong views.

"We WORK very closely with the police and with landowners to ensure everything is oKay". The Holme Valley Beagles can trace its roots bacK to the glory days of hunting in the 1800s. Colne Valley boasts an equally distinguished tradition. Its PACK were previously trencher-fed harriers.

The beagle PACK was established in 1951 and originally Kept in Kennels at Butternab Wood. The two PACKs will assemble at The Fleece in Holme at 10.30am and will set off at 11.30am.

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| FESTIVE MEETING: Colne Valley Beagles

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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Dec 24, 2013
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