One of Herefordshire’s few remaining hunts has folded, according to a group which monitors and campaigns against hunting in the county.

Herefordshire Hunt Sabs (HHS), formed four years ago, claims that the end of the Herefordshire & Clifton Hunt is the latest in a series of contractions among the county’s hunts during that period.

The North Herefordshire Hunt appears to have merged last year with the North Ledbury to become the Herefordshire Hunt, before merging in turn with the Clifton Hunt earlier this year.

Now the combined Herefordshire & Clifton Hunt, formerly kennelled at Bodenham, is to merge with the Worcestershire Hunt, though this “won't become official till May”, HHS claims.

“The Herefordshire hounds were moved to the Worcestershire kennels a few weeks ago, and sadly it is inevitable that the newly amalgamated hunt will not be able to afford to keep two packs of hounds,” the group said on its Facebook page.


Elsewhere in the county, the South Herefordshire Hunt was disbanded after four of its members were prosecuted for animal cruelty in 2019. Its “country” has since been taken over by the Ross Harriers, which unlike other hunts uses an artificial rather than animal scent trail.

A HHS spokesperson, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the only remaining hunt with kennels in Herefordshire is now the Radnor & West Hereford, based at Titley, near Kington - though the Ludlow and Ledbury Hunts, kennelled in Shropshire and Gloucestershire respectively, “both do have some of their hunt country in the county”.

“Hunting is in a terminal decline nationally,” the spokesperson added.

“We know that the impact of our group ‘sabbing’ [sabotaging] the Herefordshire & Clifton almost every Saturday and some Tuesdays throughout last season put the hunt under increasing pressure.

“But like every other business, hunts have suffered financially due to Covid, Brexit and now the cost of living crisis.”

UPDATE: The British Hound Sports Association (BHSA) has since denied HHS's claims.

Representatives of the Herefordshire & Clifton Hunt were also asked about the claims.

The Hunting Act 2004 banned deliberate hunting of foxes using dogs, but still permits drag hunting, where riders and packs follow laid trails.