Hunt stal­wart Lt Col Lau­rence McNaught

This ded­i­cated hunt sup­porter has been in­volved in just about every­thing

Horse & Hound - - News Insider -

‘They are al­ways sup­port­ive, hos­pitable and en­thu­si­as­tic’

Wil­liam mor­gan on lt Col mCnaught and his Wife, Penny

AT 80 years old, Lt Col Lau­rence McNaught has a hunt­ing ca­reer span­ning 56 years. He is from a gen­er­a­tion of mil­i­tary men whose ser­vice to Queen and coun­try was aug­mented by the whole gamut of eques­trian ac­tiv­i­ties.

Hunt com­mit­tee mem­ber, point-to-point ste­ward and sec­re­tary, or­gan­iser of the hunt’s one-day-event — Lt Col McNaught did all of this and hunted as much as he could along­side his du­ties as a soldier.

Af­ter stints on Sal­is­bury

Plain as a young of­fi­cer, hunt­ing with the Royal Ar­tillery and the Ted­worth, Lt Col McNaught was posted to Ger­many with his first wife, Sue, who was an ac­com­plished eques­trian in her own right. In Ger­many, the McNaughts or­gan­ised and com­peted in a se­ries of hunter tri­als, in­clud­ing the Hohne hunter trial, which at­tracted com­peti­tors from all over Ger­many.

For­mer mas­ter and hunts­man of the Royal Ar­tillery and Avon Vale Jonathan Seed is a great friend of Lt Col McNaught and his sec­ond wife, Penny, who is the sis­ter of trainer Henry Candy and mother of trainer Jonathan Port­man. The McNaughts are also god­par­ents to the Seeds’ daugh­ter, event rider Libby.

Jonathan re­mem­bers fence judg­ing at the Hohne hunter trial as a ju­nior of­fi­cer.

“Lau­rence was or­gan­is­ing and com­pet­ing that day and when he ar­rived at my fence he had two stops, which I marked down as faults. Af­ter­wards he came over and said, ‘Are you sure I had a

re­fusal at that fence?’ I had to tell him, this very se­nior of­fi­cer, ‘Yes Colonel, you did, twice’. He replied, ‘Righto, righto, if you’re sure.’ Some peo­ple would get very worked up about that kind of thing, but not Lau­rence — he’s not that sort of man.”

THE McNaughts set­tled in Scot­land in 1999 where they started hunt­ing with the Dum­friesshire. Lt Col McNaught be­came a mas­ter shortly be­fore the pack was dis­banded and he and his wife have since been en­thu­si­as­tic sup­port­ers of the Dum­friesshire and Ste­wartry fox­hounds, a fact that is roundly ap­pre­ci­ated.

Chair­man Wil­liam Mor­gan says, “Some peo­ple come up to

have a moan, but not Lau­rence and Penny. They come to all the dos, host a meet, are al­ways sup­port­ive, hos­pitable and en­thu­si­as­tic. The world would be a very dif­fer­ent place if there were more peo­ple like them.”

Mas­ter and hunts­man of the Dum­friesshire and Ste­wartry An­drew Cook is sim­i­larly ap­pre­cia­tive.

“Lau­rence wears an old red coat that has been patched lots of times, but every­thing is al­ways fright­fully cor­rect. His boots are al­ways highly pol­ished, as are his coat but­tons — you imag­ine they were pol­ished by Penny while he ate his break­fast.”

Hunt sec­re­tary Han­nah Hutch­ings notes, “Lau­rence and Penny are our most staunch sup­port­ers.”

They are both plan­ning to hunt this sea­son. Lt Col McNaught rides a res­cued ex-chaser, Jimmy Blues, aged 22, bring­ing their com­bined age to 102.

“Penny’s horse is even older,” Lt Col McNaught laughs, “so I think this will be our last sea­son”.

You can guar­an­tee that they will carry on sup­port­ing from the ground.

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