We hosted a group of injured servicemen and women, all of whom are undergoing some form of rehabilitation at Tedworth House, Wiltshire, to an afternoon of gundog displays and demonstrations at Mullenscote Gundogs.
This was a follow-up to my demonstration on 4 April at Tedworth House, which had provoked a request for more by the residents and staff! So, as an ex-serviceman myself, and one who had also been injured, spent two months at Headley Court and then been medically discharged from the Army, how could we possibly refuse!
Hosted by Howard Kirby, owner of Lains Shooting School and Mullenscote Gundogs, the small group enjoyed fantastic weather whilst witnessing Howard, Anthea and me put our dogs through their paces.
Ordinarily, we wouldn’t have run our dogs in such heat, but as this was a very special occasion, we decided to press on, ensuring that all dogs had a swim in the pond between routines!
The demonstration culminated in a simulated walked-up shoot involving spaniels, labradors and a German Long Haired Pointer. As befits a military audience, we used starting pistols, remote-firing dummy launchers and a live pigeon release trap – although nothing was shot or harmed in any way, I hasten to add!
Our efforts were highly appreciated, so much so that we appear to have persuaded at least two of the Heroes that a second career in gundog training is the way ahead for them! Brilliant.
We will be continuing this relationship with H4H in the future. I am going to appear at their annual summer open day on 25 July to do it all again. Come along if you can!
Can’t think of anything more rewarding than helping our injured brothers and sisters, albeit in a small way. Humbling.