Hunt sees in the new year in Kelso

Huntsman Tim Allen in Kelso on New Year's Day.
Huntsman Tim Allen in Kelso on New Year's Day.

Dozens of horses and hounds took to the cobbles of Kelso town square for a traditional New Year’s Day meet on Monday.

The Duke of Buccleuch’s Hunt enjoyed a good turnout of riders, and they were given a warm welcome on a cold morning.

Donna Sim with Keeva and Maddi Thackeray in watching the hunt.

Donna Sim with Keeva and Maddi Thackeray in watching the hunt.

Mounted followers enjoyed a small glass as they toasted the arrival of 2018, while onlookers took in the sight of the horses and hounds before the group took to the surrounding countryside for the afternoon.

Led by current huntsman and senior master of foxhounds Tim Allen since 2014, the Duke of Buccleuch’s hunt is one of the region’s oldest, dating back to 1827.

Hunt secretary Sandra Smith Maxwell said: “About 40 mounted followers from the Duke of Buccleuch’s foxhounds met in Kelso Square on New Year’s Day where they were met by an enthusiastic crowd of foot supporters.

“Hounds moved off through the town out towards Wooden and Lempitlaw where mounted followers enjoyed their day following the agreed protocol as set out for Scottish mounted foxhounds’ packs.”

Archie and Harry Green meet the hounds.

Archie and Harry Green meet the hounds.

The hunt has been invited to hold its New Year’s Day meet in Kelso for the last three years, the year before that visiting Selkirk.

The Jed Forest Hunt, meanwhile, returned to Bonchester Bridge for its traditional January 1 meet.

Helen Scott Watson and Philly Parish at Kelso.

Helen Scott Watson and Philly Parish at Kelso.

There was quite a buzz in the Square as Tim Allen gathered in the hounds to meet onlookers.

There was quite a buzz in the Square as Tim Allen gathered in the hounds to meet onlookers.

Alan, Henry and Arma Kellington at Kelso to see the hunt.

Alan, Henry and Arma Kellington at Kelso to see the hunt.