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Our History

The first 330 years...

The Hunt was formed in 1973 when the Chiddingfold and Leconfield Hunt amalgamated with the Cowdray Hunt. The Chiddingfold began as a subscription pack in 1863 and merged with the Leconfield during the Second World War, after the 1941-42 season.

Each of the three Hunts is steeped in history. The Leconfield dates from 1773 when it was hunted by Lord Leconfield himself and latterly by successive generations of his family until the 1940s. Today hounds are still kept at the original kennels at Petworth House by kind permission of Lord Egremont.

In the mid-1890s the famous Goodwood hounds vacated the former Charlton country. Lord Leconfield was keen to increase his country and re-annexed the land, enabling the Leconfield to hunt six days a week. After the Second World War he reduced hunting to four days a week and but still found the country too large. It was then that Lord Cowdray's sons, the Hons. Harold and Clive Pearson approached him, requesting they be allowed to take over the old Charlton country to start a new pack - The Cowdray Hunt. The Cowdray's first meet was held in November 1922.

The Chiddingfold, Leconfield and Cowdray Hunt continues to hunt the original Charlton country today and regularly meets at Uppark. Hunting was first recorded here some 330 years ago in the 1670s when The Charlton Hunt were reputed to have kept the first pack of hounds dedicated to hunt foxes.