The Fitzwilliam (Milton) Hunt has a considerable history attached to it, going back over 250 years in its present form, and probably longer than that. The Kennel records of hound pedigrees go right back to 1760, but the Hunt was probably formed in the 1740s when several of the Governing Packs of English Foxhounds, of which the Fitzwilliam was one, were formed. An unfortunate fire destroyed earlier records meaning the exact date of foundation cannot be pinpointed. Prior to this period, the family would certainly have kept hounds to hunt the hare on their property at Milton, near Peterborough, which they had occupied since 1502. Before the Fitzwilliam’s own involvement in the area, the Abbots of Peterborough used the lands at Milton to hunt over, and it is therefore suggested that there have been hounds kennelled continuously at Milton since the reign of Richard II.
The pack is still kennelled at Milton Park today and has never been out of the ownership of the Fitzwilliam family, the current representative being the senior Joint Master, Sir Philip Naylor-Leyland Bt. The other Joint-Masters are Lady Isabella Naylor-Leyland, Lizzie Thomas, and Philip Baker.
Our Huntsman is Simon Hunter. Simon is assisted in kennels and in the field by first whipper-in, Shaun Parish.
The Hunt goes out two days per week in the main season, which usually starts at the beginning of November and ends, depending on farming conditions, at about the end of March. Autumn hunting starts as soon as possible after harvest is in, usually at the beginning of September.
The country hunted by the Fitzwilliam is some 30 miles by 20 miles, from Stamford in the North to Higham Ferrers in the South, and covers an area of some 600 square miles. In this considerable expanse of country are over 800 farmers, over whose land the Fitzwilliam considers itself lucky to hunt, and is very grateful for the support that it enjoys.
We don’t only go hunting, we also have our point to point, our show and garden open day and other events, and even our own for sale and wanted page. For more details, click on the links to the Facebook pages below, or contact the Hunt Secretaries via the contact details on the Contacts page