A Brief History of the Mendip Farmers' Hunt
Our hounds have been hunting the Mendip hills since Napoleonic times. The Hunt was started as a private pack around the middle of the 18th century, and from 1760 to 1859 the Mendip country was hunted by the Tudway family. Colonel H A Luttrell (of the Dunster Castle Luttrells') then hunted the country from 1860-65.
A hiatus then occurred and the Mendip Foxhounds ceased formally to exist for 56 years, excepting two brief periods. Our country, though, continued to be hunted by Harriers.
In 1914 the Tiarks brothers arrived. Sportsmen to their fingertips they proceeded to hunt the country up to four days a week until the Great War stopped them in their tracks. Hermann Tiarks, who stood 6'3" in his socks, is well remembered to this day. He wrote an excellent book about hunting the country in former days.
Our hounds amalgamated with the Stanton Drew in 1920 under Capt E H Rouse-Boughton. C Hilton Green became Master in 1921, and a year later they became once more the Mendip Foxhounds and the kennels moved to Priddy.
H A Tiarks returned to the saddle for four years between 1924-28 and a succession of masterships followed: J Pickersgill, 1928-29. Capt G Hodgkinson and Capt D M Wills, 1929-32. Capt & Mrs Parks, 1932-34. Capt R Corbett and Major S C Houston, 1934-37. P Long, 1937-40.
The word "Farmers" was then added again at the beginning of the Second World War when, incredibly, Hermann Tiarks took up the horn again. He hunted hounds for three explosive months with great zest before the Mendip Farmers' Hunt Committee was hastily formed under the Chairmanship of W H Middle.
Hounds moved to the present kennels near Priddy in 1921, at the time owned by Sir Reginald Hobhouse and then his daughter Audrey Firbank who was secretary until her death in 2004 aged 91.
They are still kenneled in Priddy, and have been hunted by Mr RL Standing MFH for almost a decade.
More information about the Post-War years follows directly.