Yes, all Boxing Day hunts are on the Monday, as stated by the Countryside Alliance:
"Please note that this year's Boxing Day meets will be held on Monday 27th December - no hunting takes place on a Sunday."
The other side also confirms that Boxing Day hunts take place on 26 December, unless it is a Sunday.
Thornbury Castle also shows it as an event to see on Monday, 27 December, for those wishing to stoll around the "village" of Thornbury.
The hunt tends to assemble from 10:30, for a pre-hunt drink outside The Swan. The riders set off at around 11:15 to do 2 laps of the town centre (High Street - Chapel Street - Rock Street - Quaker Lane - The Plain - High Street). At the end of the second lap they divert down Castle Street to follow the hounds on the actual hunt, and take the trail off left, just after the Old Vicarage, and into The Pithay.
The High Street gets very crowded, and could well be more so this year. Pressure is being exerted on the coalition government to repeal anti-hunting legislation, and so hunt supporters will want to turn out in force, to show that there is popular backing for the repeal. So that is a consideration for viewing and taking photographs. If you want to see the riders by The Swan, then you should arrive early, and hog your position with determination.
Ah well, there are plenty of crowd-drawing events in town, which not everyone will like. Thornbury had a “salute the armed forces” parade in April 2008, which the organiser proposed “in response to reports of towns shunning similar events due to a divided opinion on UK military actions overseas”.
This seems to have been a precursor to the town’s re-launched carnival, which also has a parade with a significant military presence, and takes place one week after Armed Forces Day.
It is economics which determines whether such events happen, and not ethics. Local businesses will want such events to happen, because they know that people will go to the High Street area, and spend money in town. That is why the Gazette had this to report in April 2008: “The event has been supported by local businesses and shops, who have helped finance and lay out facilities for the event”.
Similarly, the Berkeley Hunt is welcomed by local businesses because it is a potential source of additional revenue:-
â The Castle: “Before you leave us you may wish to take a stroll into the village and watch the spectacular departure of the Berkeley Hunt”.
â Blend Café Lounge: “We will be offering our usual Breakfast and Brunch with hot toddy and mulled wine available to warm you as you watch the hunt”.
You can see Blend customers watching last year’s hunt in these two online photos:
Ironically, Blend seems to be close to where the sabs were waiting, and online comments suggest that it could be the location of a flash point this year.
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