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Hunting & Shooting
1900 Map showing The Moors marked green, railway across bottom of map with Washbrook Road marked pink, and Hayway marked blue

licence 1916
Game Licence issued in 1916 to Joseph Knight

Northampton Mercury 13th September 1806

A List of the Certificates that have been issued to Gamekeepers by the Clerk of the Peace for the County of Northampton, between the first Day of July and the eleventh Day of September 1806, both days inclusive, distinguishing the Duties paid in each respective Certificate.

On a Three-Guinea Stamp.
Fletcher, John, Rushden, Gent., Gamekeeper of John Higgins Esq. for the hundred of Higham Ferrers, and the manors of Rushden, Raunds, and Irchester, with the Members, in the County of Northampton. Sept 1.

Northampton Mercury, 14th October 1809

Lost—On Thursday the 28th September, in Rushden Field, near Higham Ferrers, in the County of Northampton - A White Pointer Dog - with Liver-coloured Ears, and answers to the Name of SANCHO.

Whoever will bring the above Dog to Mr. Wright Richards, of Rushden; or Mr. Sharpe, at Wellingborough Toll-Bar, shall be handsomely rewarded for their Trouble, and paid all reasonable Charges.

Northampton Mercury, 23rd February 1861, transcribed by Susan Manton

A Fox killed in Tap Room

On Monday, the 11th instant, the landlord of the Wheat Sheaf Inn went into his barn, when a fox broke cover from an old tub in the barn, and would have led off and attempted to regain his old quarters but was prevented by the hounds. He made a straight direction for the house, the pack pretty close at his heels; he then bolted into the tap room and mounted a table. At this time hounds and foot people were all mingled together in picturesque confusion. At length one old hound, with a wart below his eye, fastened Reynard by the throat, another took him by the spine of the back and a third bit him through the foot. Suddenly the whole pack gave tongue with a cry that made the tap room echo and poor Reynard gave up the ghost with the savage music ringing in his ears. It is not a very common thing for so many foot people to be in at the death and not a huntsman not horseman near the spot. The landlord examined the fox to see if his skin was anywhere torn; he found it was all right and he gave it into the hands of a young man to have it dressed and stuffed and no doubt poor Reynard will have a glass case and be promoted from the taproom to the parlour company.

Northampton Mercury, 15 September 1866

RUSHDEN, Northamptonshire. TO BE LET, BEAUTIFULLY FURNISHED, A very desirable HUNTING BOX, standing in its own Grounds with 30 Acres of Land, on the borders of the Fitzwilliam, Oakley, and Pytchley Hunts.

For particulars, inquire of Mr. James Freyburg, 41 Chester-square; or of Messrs. Hedger and Davis, 49 Pall Mall, London.

08 March 1873 - Northampton Mercury 

On Tuesday last the Oakley hounds met at Colworth Thick, and, finding Reynard at home, he took them off towards Rushden village, when, on taking a fence at the top end of the village, a valuable horse, the property of Mr. Whitehead, of Wollaston …..

21st July 1877 - Northampton Mercury

.... waggon, kindly lent by the employer, was called into requisition to convey the men and their belongings to a field besides the Rushden Moors, where it had been arranged to play at cricket, quoits, &c., but rain coming on, rendered the shelter of a hovel acceptable ......

Wellingborough & Kettering News, August 27th, 1881, transcribed by Kay Collins

CUB HUNTINGCub hunting was commenced by the Oakley pack on Monday last, the bitches being taken to Henwick where the first blood of the season was tasted. From thence they were taken to Rushden Moors, at which place the pups were no sooner in than it was evident some sport was in store as they gave tongue, and after some good brushes up and down the cover a fine cub was killed inside the cover. They were again put in and several more were soon on the move, but the master wished every opportunity to be given for them to go away and after some had left up the clover field, and the cover had had a good storming up, the hounds were called out.

Wellingborough News, 20th January 1883, transcribed by Kay Collins

HUNTING—In consequence of the North Pytchley Hounds being advertised to meet at Rushden on Thursday, 11th inst., some hundreds assembled near the cross roads and Hayway, when they were told it was a misprint, the place of meeting being Rushton. Several horses were brought from Peterborough.

Wellingborough News, 5th September 1890, transcribed by Kay Collins

THE FIRST—Although "poor Rushden" is not blessed with a superabundance of game preserves, the opening of the shooting season invariably brings forth the latent shooting talent of the community, who generally score in some way or other. A few days prior to "the first" the matter was under consideration of a group of tradesmen and manufacturers of the place, and though one of the latter had often courageously shot a few tame rabbits when the exigencies of the kitchen or the furnishing of the mid-day meal required it, he had never yet proved his valour or exhibited his skill by laying low anything that could be called wild; and as he related this to the company it was evident, that to succeed in the slaughter of a wild animal, even though it might be a harmless "bunnie" was the summit of his ambition. A local farmer, who evidently appreciated the laudable ambition of the would-be sportsman, overhearing the conversation, resolved to gratify the desire of the "man of leather," and at once invited him to bring his friends and try his skill upon his farm. The eventful day at length arrived, and with it the eager sportsman, fully equipped, with gun, ammunition, and game bag complete. Fields were traversed, hedges beaten, and at length a real wild rabbit was espied apparently enjoying a siesta in the long grass. Our friend descended on his hands and knees, and cautiously approaching until a further advance might have scared the game, the gun was brought to the "present," careful aim was taken, and a loud report was followed by an exultant shout from the successful sportsman, as he gleefully announced that he had "knocked the crater over," and had killed a wild animal at last. The next business was the bagging of the game, but on attempting to do this our sportsman found the animal (?) tethered to a stump. Another remarkable feature was the absence of blood, but the entrails protruded in the form of a shoemaker's dirty apron; and as these articles are not generally found in such curious receptacles, it was at length discovered that a skin had been stuffed with this useful article to impersonate a wild animal; and the concluding tableau can be better imagined than described.

Wellingborough News, 14th November 1890, transcribed by Kay Collins

THE OAKLEY HOUNDS met at Rushden for the first time this season on Tuesday. There was not a large number of horsemen present, but this was counter-balanced by the hundreds of footmen who put in an appearance. From the "Oakley" a move was made to the Moors, where foxes proved plentiful, and a redskin soon broke cover, and made off in the direction of Knuston spinneys.

Rushden Echo, Friday October 7, 1898 transcribed Sue Manton

Pheasant Shooting – Owing to the favourable season there are more pheasants than usual in Northamptonshire. The birds are very forward and free from disease. Very few coverts were broken on Saturday, but the outlying birds afforded ample sport and some good bags were made.

Rushden Echo, 15th October 1909, transcribed by Peter Brown

Cubs Killed Near Irchester – The Oakley hounds met at Hinwick on Tuesday morning, and proceeded to Knuston, two cubs being found near the railway not far from Irchester station. One cub started across the field, but suddenly ran back into the covert from whence it once more emerged, only to run back again. Before it could regain the covert, hounds got hold of it and killed it. Meantime the second cub got away into some bushes, and here, after killing the first cub, the hounds soon found it. The cub ran into the brook, where it turned on one of the hounds, but it was soon overpowered by the pack and killed in the middle of the stream. Hounds then left for Wollaston Park. There was a fairly good company out.

The Rushden Echo, 31st December 1909, transcribed by Kay Collins

Hunting - The Oakley Hounds
Each Day at 10.45a.m.

Saturday Jan. 1
Saturday Jan. 8

Great Staughton
Kempston Hoo
Knotting Green

Rushden Echo, Friday 28th September 1917, transcribed by Kay Collins

Cub-Hunting – The Oakley Hunt on Monday last opened their season by meeting at Knuston Spinney, and a large crowd of foot passengers turned out from Rushden and district. Cubs were plentiful and strong, many getting away, but hounds drew blood once only.

The Rushden Argus, 7th January 1921

A New Year’s Meet
Large Field Out with the Oakley at Farndish

The hunt at Farndish

The Oakley Pack is this season showing very good sport, and a large field turned out on Sunday, when the meet was at Farndish.

Rushden Echo, 23rd February 1923, transcribed by Kay Collins

Stopped at Rushden—The Oakley Hounds met at the Kennels yesterday week, and found immediately in Wigney Wood—running very fast for 30 minutes. Hounds ran well in the afternoon from Galsey Wood, through Temple and Knotting Fox, over Yelden open fields, and were stopped at Rushden.

Rushden Echo, February 8th 1924, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wymington—Hunting—The village was the scene of great animation on Tuesday afternoon following the meet of the Oakley Hounds at Bozeat. After a smart run over the fields from Podington and across the railway lines, hounds “killed” in the village street, the occurrence (without parallel in the memory of the oldest inhabitants) creating great excitement and interest.

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