W3C A Season With Joe Bowman and the Ullswater Foxhounds 1920/21 GARN YAM

The Ullswater Foxhounds were formed in 1873 after the amalgamation of two smaller packs, the Patterdale and Matterdale. In 1889 a Mr. J. E. Halsall became Master of the Ullswater and appointed Joe Bowman as huntsman. Bowman had already hunted hounds, the first recorded date being 14th November 1879 at the age of 22. He finally retired (having once retired in 1911 only to return in 1914), in 1924 serving for 41 seasons.

He married a Miss Martin of Dockray with whom he had a large family. He died in 1940.

A Season With the Ullswater Foxhounds 1920/21

ULLSWATER FOXHOUNDS - The opening meet was held at Dockray, Matterdale, on Saturday. Joe Bowman is again huntsman, with B. Wilson as whip. The morning was fine, and as the day advanced was, if anything too hot for both hunters and hounds. A good number of people assembled at the meet, including Messrs. W. H. Marshall (master) and party. Mr. and Mrs. T. B. Nelson, Mr. and Mrs. T. J. Young, Mr. H. le Rodewald, Mr. J. Richardson, Mr. W. Edwards and party (Manchester), Capt. Storey, Mr. F. Edmondson, Miss Little and Miss Powell. The huntsman cast off in the Riddings, but nothing was found until Collier Hagg in Yewbarrow Fell was reached, and there the fox was unkennelled. The route was past the Shooting House down Swinburn Park, through the Coombes and into Priest Crag in Watermillock. Here the fox turned and took up behind the Old Park Wall and back to Collier Hagg. After dodging about here for some time the hounds at last compelled him to leave his old haunts. Taking now down to the bottom, over the Park wall, and near Cooksty Brow went to ground in a rabbit hole. After some time and work reynard was dug out and again set at liberty, making a better run than before. The course this time was down the fields into a young plantation, where he gave his pursuers some work before they drove him out of this thick cover. He was at last forced out and took across to Nichol Hagg. Here the hounds gave him no rest in the wood and drove him into the open at the high end. The hounds who were now running in view, forced their game back into the Hagg, and near to Gowbarrow Hall he was finally rolled over in the open, a good number of ladies and gentlemen being in at the finish. FUSEDALE.

16th October 1920


These hounds on Saturday met at Howtown. The morning being fine a good number of hunters assembled including Mr and Mrs Marshall, Mr and Mrs Nelson, Mr and Mrs Milcrest, Major Bush, Messrs F Edmondson, H. Gleister, Captain Story, Miss Little, Miss Brown, and Miss Powell. The huntsman cast off up Steel End and the hounds soon pronounced that a hunt was in store by taking a drag which led to near Ivy Crag, then crossed Fusedale at High Force, through Braithwaite Brow to Brock Crag, where a fox was roused. Reynard, with a good number close behind, took out at the Ghyll Head past Pickern Folds, over Dod End and through Fusedale Head into Martindale Forest. Hounds by now had got settled to their work and drove their game past the Bungalow through Calf Close and at Ullman Crag in Bannerdale went to ground. The whip was not long in getting to the place with terriers, which soon bolted a couple of foxes. Fortunately all the pack followed the one they had previously run, which took around Nab End under Long Nan, through Middle Dod, past Rooking How, and over the deer park near Rest Dod. The fox here changed his route by taking down past the sheep folds, then up Snow Grove Ghyll. The hounds by now no doubt were pressing their game hard, as before reaching the top he was compelled to turn under Whiteridge Crags, and at Low Dove Crag went to ground. Hunters after some time arrived with terriers and soon effected a bolt. This time Reynard tried to climb out at Green Cove for High Street, but being unable to do so it turned back and holed for the third time. His stay here was short as he was once more driven out. He took downhill and before reaching the bottom was rolled over in the open. FUSEDALE

23rd October 1920

Ullswater Foxhounds - On Saturday this meet was at Glencoin. The morning being fine a good number of hunters assembled. The huntsman threw off at Moss Crag and soon hit a line, which led up to Black, where the fox broke cover. Hounds from the first got on good terms with their game, which they kept to the finish. The course was over the vast Heron Pike and forward along the breast opposite Glenridding. Before reaching Greenside Mines reynard climbed to the top an over Sheffield Pike into Lenkendale. Turning here to the right, the hunt continued through Black Crag, across Moresdale Beck, into Glenridding Dod. Hounds who were running without a check, forced their game up the Screes, and near the top went to ground. From this spot he was soon driven by the terriers, and near the powder house at Greenside was run into in the open.

30th October 1920

Ullswater Foxhounds - during the past week the above hounds have been kennelled at Cooper house, Selside. On Tuesday, Joe Bowman turned out for Cappel Fall, where he met with a large gathering of hunters from a wide area; amongst those present were Mrs. H. A. T. Shepherd (Shaw End) Miss Irving. Col. Fothergill. Capt. Storey, Messers C. N. Parry, Joseph Wood. W. Jenkinson. W. King. Douthwaite, Parkin, E. Wood, F. J. Wood, J. Thompson, Grisedale, Kitchen and Rowlandson. Bowman cast off in Forest Hall Plantations, dragging along for Cappel Fall. Here there was “nowt doing” so Joe got his hounds across for Bannisdale Wood. Soon a fox was unkennelled. Reynard went away, Chanter and Music leading the way. Soon about twenty hounds were seen to go over for Longsleddale, but owing to the foggy morning it was bad seeing for the spectators. B Wilson (whip) Jimmy Thompson, Grisedale and Parry followed over the top. Reynard led over Dry How Fell for Yewbarrow Hall Wood, here turning left-handed for High House, under the Cragg down the valley for Murthwaite, with hounds in full cry. Turning up for Whiteside Pike, reynard made for Low Bridge Wood and across the Bottoms for the Lamb Pasture, up the breast and on to Cappel Fall, Mowdy Rake, forest End and so to Bannisdale White How. Here reynard’s number was about up and he went down the Pastures and went to earth in a drain in the Cow Pastures. In the meantime a number of hunters, including the huntsman were enjoying cheese and biscuits at Bannisdale Head when one old hunter Douthwaite heard the hounds. Down the Green they all went single file, Captain Storey leading with Jenks of Morland close at his heels. Soon Storey had his terrier “Trouble” on he spot. Then old Hunty landed. After a bit of digging reynard was bolted and rolled over in the open the whole pack being in at the kill. When lifted by Captain Storey it was proved to be a fine vixen. Cobble

13th November 1920

Ullswater Foxhounds – These hounds met on Saturday at Kilnstone, Longsleddale, the dale home of Mr. Farrer. The morning being fine and clear, the huntsman decided to hunt at the head of the valley. Amongst those present at the meet were Messrs. W. Farrer, G. Webster, C. N. Parry, Capt Storey, Capt Stackhouse and Miss Irving. Above Sadgill Joe Bowman threw off, and at Little Backbarrow a fox was unkennelled. The pack from he first got on good terms with their game, which they forced out on the top, through the head of Bannerdale and High House Fell, then climbed by Gray Crag and for some distance headed for Wasdale. Swinging to the left on nearing Harrop Pike, reynard, with the pack close at his brush, crossed Browna Bottom and at Scott Crag took refuge in the crag face. Hounds were unable to reach him, but Jim Thompson at last dislodged him. The fox, with Clasher in full view, made for that stronghold Buckbarrow Crag, but on arrival was headed off by a number of hunters, a splendid sight being witnessed by all. At Little Buckbarrow he again binked. Here an accident happened to a promising young hound, Mounter. The fox was driven out by the whip, and in descending was met by this dog, who tried to seize him and in the attempt lost his foothold and fell about 40 feet. Had it not been for some ling, which broke his fall, the hound would no doubt have been killed. Reynard after taking round by Scott Crag a second time was on the point of being run in to when he went to earth. The whip was soon there with terriers, but they were unable to effect a bolt so reynard was worried, and drawn by Billie Dawson. – On Monday hounds again loosed from Kilnstone. The morning was fair, but a strong wind prevailed, which very much interfered with hearing on the fells. Most of the hunters assembled who were there on Saturday. It was decided to hunt down Potter Fell End and the huntsman cast off at Docker Nook Crag, and hounds soon took a drag which led up to Lord’s Lot Crag, where the fox was roused from his lair, and a rattling fast race ensued. Crossing the top, the hunt was taken down into Longsleddale past Nedder House Farm, then up the wood, climbing Nedder Lot to the top. Hounds, who were running without a check, forced their game along the tops through Laithwaite, and in Burnside Hall Lot he went to ground in an old drain. Owing to the strong wind it was some time before hounds were found, and only then by their vigorous marking. The terriers soon effected a bolt, but before going far reynard holed again but bolted before hunters arrived. After another sharp spin the fox for a third time went to ground at Staveley Head, but this time was dispatched and when lifted proved to be a fine vixen. FUSEDALE

20th November 1920

Mardale Meet
Brilliant Weather and Record Muster

The landscape was bathed in almost summer brilliance, and Haweswater was a deep blue as the hunt assembled. And proceeded to divide themselves out, some on to Riggindale, others on Mardale Banks, and the majority went towards Branstree, where Joe Bowman cast off, and almost immediately a line was struck before crossing Woodford Ghyll. There was a joyous burst of music, which crescendo into a thrilling chorus as Careless unkennelled a fox which was viewed from above by the Sleddale shepherds and was soon seen by the whole field speeding through the breast for Branstree-a streak of brown stealing along with incredible swiftness, with hounds in full cry. It was a fine lay-on, and reynard’s life was not worth many hours purchase. At the same time a section of the pack unkennelled another fox, which led in the opposite direction into Harter Fell. Fox number one set his mask for Swindale, and was soon over the skyline but not before delighting the spectators with as pretty a bit of hunting as has ever been seen at Mardale. Climbing out by Hop Ghyll Head past the falls for Swindale reynard led his pursuers a cracking pace through Black Bells and round Swindale Head, encircling Gowder Crag, and back to Dow Crag, where hounds were so relentless he went to ground. Braithwaite Wilson, the untiring whip was soon on the spot, and the gane little terrier, Gunner, was sent in. James Thompson was also present with some tools, and after an hour’s hard work the fox was bolted and was viewed away by nine hounds, and after a short and merry spin was rolled over in the bottom near Parsonage Plantation. A fine young vixen was picked up by T. Coates of Mosedale, and the mask was presented to one of the youngest of the field, Master Norman Croft of Kendal. The second fox made right through the precipitous breast of Harter Fell, and appeared to be heading for Nan Bield Pass, thence swinging right-handed through Riggindale crossed the valley in full view of the field, on to Branstree, and almost got on the line of the first fox. A third fox was seen shortly afterwards tearing down from Woodford Ghyll towards Mardale Green, and this one too, a fine red beauty, got on the same line as the two previous ones. The crossing and re crossing of scent was baffling in the extreme, but two or three hounds stuck to the line of one and puzzled it out back to Harter Fell, and were still hunting late on in the afternoon, but without arriving at a tangible result. Of the young hounds none shaped better than Marjory, a descendent of the famous Marksman. The others were all in grand fettle. Chanter, of course was missing, this hound paying the full penalty for “fractiousness” at the mouth of a fox borran in the Selside neighbourhood last week.

Monday's Hunt

An absolutely perfect day followed a night of hard frost and the landscape was bathed in sunlight and shadow with not a fleck of cloud in the sky of blue as Joe cast off on Castle Crag. Soon a light coloured fox was viewed away from the rocks and sped round Dog Crag, Flake How Crag, and Lady’s Seat. Cracker led the pursuers as they gathered quickly together and drove reynard right-handed towards Dry Syke Ghyll and Birk Crag, right through the rills and ginnels of Welter Crag. Another fox then appeared on the scene and there was the spectacle of two hunts going, one behind the other, Comrade, Careless and Cracker leading one consignment back into Castle Crag and the other section led by the mellow voiced old Fullerton doubling back from Basin Crag, through the strong places of Welter and again though Birk Crag towards Castle Crag, but driving reynard to ground in Dry Syke Ghyll, where he refused to bolt, he paid the penalty underground. The other fox was then viewed by the field crossing the meadows at Flake How, being nearly met by Mrs. Edmondson and her daughter, and speeding away through the sheep crossed the valley on to Mardale Banks as if aiming for Swindale, but hunting being rather difficult hounds could not cope with it after crossing the road.

27th November 1920

Ullswater Foxhounds – On Monday the pack met at Hylands, Sedbergh, in charge of the huntsman, Joe Bowman, and Braithwaite Wilson, whip. A start was made by road for Cautleyholme. The morning was not an ideal hunting morning, mists hanging thickly over the fells. On arrival at the rendezvous Joe determine to make a start, hounds were loosed and cheered on their way to the Cragg by the huntsman. After proceeding along the Cragg, Countess spoke to reynard’s having been astir in the early morning and shortly after he was driven out at the top of the Cragg by the pack. Crossing Drummocks, reynard turned right-handed down Hareshaw, crossing Bowderdale by the Spout and took right out by the top of the Screes closely followed by the hounds. He then made for Yarlside Cragg. Turning down Randygill he again crossed Bowderdale considerably lower down, climbing up Hareshaw taking down hobdale, crossing Sickersfell, Crook over Settlebeck Gill, proceeded along the foot of Winder, and thence to Arranthow where he again turned left down Middle Tongue along Croasdale side by the shooting box, taking along the Nab, crossing Bramrigg to Whitefell Foot, climbing Langrigg to Fellude Scar. He now made a turn to the left coming along Brown Moor to Castlehow Knott. The long struggle beginning ot tell he took to the fields, hounds being close to his brush, passing Castlehow farm, and through Mr. Capstick’s land, he turned on to the road at Gelt Scar stile, sticking to the roadway as far as Ridding farm. Here hounds had a slight check, but with an encouraging “Hark Forrard” by George Capstick, were soon on the track. Crossing by Brunt Syke he made for the Lune, and was rolled over in the open close to the “bogey” which crosses the Lune nearly opposite Lowgill Station, after a plucky and strenuous run. He proved to be a fine dog fox scaling 19½ lbs. The hunt was generally stated to be one of the finest ever known in the district, lasting from start to finish for five hours. Hounds stuck to their work with great determination. It was a pleasure to see the venerable “Joe” looking fit and hearty and carrying his seventy years so well.

5th February 1921

About three hundred hunters were present at the meet at Burton last week. Hounds were cast off in Major Wood and struck a drag that led to Keer Side, into Docker Moor and Black Wood above Whittington. Two foxes got up and the hunt led by Meal Rigg Farm, Hutton Roof upto the Cragg, through Burrows Wood, over the Cragg by Holme Park Fell. After crossing Farlton Knott the chase led back by Newbiggin, past Kelker Well Farm, over the Cragg to Cawthorpe Fell, into Dalton Bank Fell Wood, where scent was lost beside Mr. Dixon’s farm buildings, after a fast run of about four hours. - About 500 attended Friday’s hunt. A start was made for Docker Moor, but nothing was found until Mr. Burrow’s wood was reached. Here a fox got up, and two others were seen, going through Hutton Roof churchyard towards Lupton Hall. But Joe Bowman got most of the hound sonto the first fox that led past the kennels at Cragg House into Major Wood. He then headed towards Dalton Bank and Park Wood, and was killed at the south end of the wood. Mr. Parry being in at the kill. The latter and J. Riding cast off hounds just below the Park Wood, where they struck a drag that led down to Capernwray Wood. Here a big fox jumped up in front of hounds, leading by the railway line to Keer Holme, then turning right handed towards Major Wood, past Cragg House, through Burrows Wood and over the Cragg towards Holme Park. After rounding Farlton Knott and returning back via Newbiggin, hounds got a check in a ploughed field, which gave the fox a good lead by about half an hour. However, hounds were got away again by j. Ridding and the whip, B. Wilson, and the hunt led above Hutton Roof, through burrows Wood, then on to the Hutton Roof Cragg. Hounds got a bad check on the rocks, which lost much time, for the fox was seen leading by an hour going past Cragg House kennels. The whip and J. Robinson got hounds away again after a lot of work on the rocks, the hunt leading through Major Wood, around Dalton Bank Park Wood, and was lost near Dalton Hall at ten minutes past five, after a good hunt of six hours and ten minutes.

19th February 1921

Ullswater Foxhounds – On Saturday the meet was at Patterdale Hotel. This being an annual fixture and the holiday always draws a large gathering of visitors and local hunters. After a heavy snowstorm at the time of stating the day was favourable. B. Wilson, who was in charge of the hounds, cast off at Quarry Bank and drew forward under Gray Crag to above Blowick, where hounds struck a line which led to under Bleaberry Knott, where the fox was unkennelled, making a good and exciting run. The course taken first was through Birk Fell slack, down by Scale How Force, then back over Long Cragg and on above the lake to Birk Fell Earth, where no doubt reynard intended going ot ground, but was headed off by a number of hunters. For some time the fox dodged amongst the juniper bushes and crags, offering a splendid sight to upwards of 100 spectators and the working of the hounds too was greatly admired. At last reynard was compelled to leave his old haunts and take down the top to Long Cragg, where he binked, but was soon driven out, and near the shore of the lake was finally run in to and dispatched. This makes the fifth kill in the last five meets, the two previous hunts have yielded a kill in Wanthwaite Crag and one in the open near the school at Gowbarrow. FUSEDALE

2nd April 1921

Ullswater Foxhounds: Fox Swims Ullswater Lake – Some further interesting particulars are to hand respecting a great hunt, which these hounds had last week when a fox was killed in the famous stronghold Birkfell Earth. It appears hounds had divided. Three hounds had taken a fox to Sandwick in Martindale. They lost it and were considerably puzzled, coming down to the shore of Ullswater and hunting up and down the margin of the lake. It appeared reynard had gone down the beck and taken to the lake. Mr. Harry Swinburn of Gowbarrow, had been listening to hounds hunting and was surprised to see the fox emerging from the lake after he had crossed, wet and panting, and was so exhausted he (Mr.Swinburn) could easily have killed it with his stick, but being too good a sportsman he allowed it to proceed, to recover and provide a run for another day. In the meantime another two and a half couples ran a fox down into the lake and drowned it, the carcass washing up in a north wind next day. On Thursday hounds met at Hartsop Hall. Mr. Vally Allen had seen a fox amongst the lambs and given a halloa which brought hounds immediately onto the drag, which led through the beck above Brotherswater, past Bull Crag, round Dod End, through the Savins and Hogarth Ghyll, heading some distance for Scandale, before turning and dashing through Dove Crag borran without holing. Thence climbing Hart Crag for Fairfield reynard turned in by Cofa Pike and set his mask for Deepdale Hause and the top of St Sunday Crag. Speeding along Thorn How he came in sight of Patterdale Hall, the residence of the master, it being a very fast hunt through here and under Raven Crag, out over Arnison Crag to Deepdale by way of Blow Crags and under Bannerside in Gavel Pike. Here the fox holed in an almost impossible place, which terriers could not reach and which he himself was only able to enter by creeping backwards into ginnel. There were plenty of willing workers, and as the rock proved good “riving” stuff a level was driven in from the top side and a view could be obtained of the fox and ultimately reynard was drawn, a fine dog fox of 18 lbs. This made the 53rd of the season. On Saturday, Joe Bowman with Messers. W. H. Marshall (master). C. R. Farrer (secretary), Joe Richardson, and Mr. Carr of the Albrighton Foxhounds, with about half the pack (the other half being with the whip, B. Wilson in Troutbeck) took a hunt at Thorn How, which led up the meadows. The line held for St. Sunday Crag to Ruthwaite Lodge, the fox being unkennelled in Eagle Crag. Four couples struck their game., Clasher and Merry getting crag fast. Mr. Carr at considerable risk helped to liberate them. He also freed a sheep, which had become fast. It was in a fearfully emaciated condition, having been there for some weeks, and was merely a framework of skin and bone and wool. Mr. T. Teasdale assisted him. The poor animal was so weak it could hardly stand, and could easily be held in one hand, so light had it become through starvation. The nearest farmers were acquainted. Meantime the fox had gone through the breast for Striding Edge, crossing by Red Tarn foot and Cachedecam, out by Brown Cove for Helvellyn. After being chased in the Wythburn side for some time, the fox returned by Nethermost Cove, and went to ground in Nether Pike, near which place it is said the rare holly fern grows. It was impossible to make anything out and the fox was left. On his way back, however, Joe Bowman accounted for a family of cubs.

7th May 1921

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