Crowds line the streets for New Year’s Day hunt - in pictures

New Year's Day Fitzwilliam Hunt at Wansford EMN-150101-162851009
New Year's Day Fitzwilliam Hunt at Wansford EMN-150101-162851009
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Excited spectators came out in force to glimpse the New Year’s Day Fitzwilliam (Milton) Hunt in Wansford, near Peterborough.

Camera phones were at the ready to capture the riders and hounds as they came past with their route starting at the Haycock Hotel at noon.

Field Master Andrew West took charge of his first hunt on what he described as a beautiful day out, albeit a little windy.

A crowd believed to number 800 or more lined the streets with men, women and children finding any pocket of space they could to spot the group as they came by.

The friendly atmosphere even saw some of the younger spectators get to meet and greet the hounds who are kept at Milton Park in Peterborough.

Led by Huntsman George Adams, who has spent 30 years in the role, 50 to 60 riders made their way through Stibbington, Sibson Aerodrome and Chesterton.

The day’s activities finished at around 3.30pm.

Field Master West said the event ran smoothly.

He added: “It went really well, it was a wonderful day. Everybody really

enjoyed it.

“We had a good turnout. It was lovely to see the public support us.”

The meet on Thursday is the second big event of the festive period for the riders who hunt twice a week from September to mid-March during their season.

Almost 1,000 people also turned up for the Boxing Day meet which began at the Bell Inn, in Stilton.