Fox Hunting Life with Horse and Hound

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power.tipps.huntsman gavin shortenHuntsman Gavin Shorten, foxhounds, staff, and field of nearly 80 move off through the north gate of the ancient town wall to the first draw.   / Catherine Power photo

A day with the Tipperary Foxhounds is always special, but when that day happens to be the Opening Meet in Fethard, it rises to a completely different dimension. Recognised by all as the World Horse Capital, Fethard is a very special place, indeed. It hosts the Fethard Horse Museum in the Old Town Hall, a must for all horse enthusiasts. Not to forget as well that Coolmore Stud is just a stone’s throw from town.

And so it was we found ourselves on bank holiday Monday, in the small park between the Clashawley River and the historic town wall, first built in 1375 and among the best preserved of any in these islands. A portion of the town wall also serves as the back wall of the famed McCarthy’s hotel, that establishment providing hot port and other suitable hunting refreshments served up by the proprietor, Vincent (Jasper) Murphy. Mr. Murphy also doubles as the town undertaker. He is the fifth generation of his family since Richard McCarthy opened in 1852.

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