Dermot Hannify Huntsman Laois Foxhounds with David Lalor MFH and Marcus McLoughlin MFH. Photo © Catherine Power


Established in 1859, the Irish Masters of Foxhounds Association (IMFHA) represents the interests of 41 foxhunting packs in Ireland. It governs all matters connected to foxhunting legislation, regulation, conservation, education, communications and finance.

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News & Events 2021

Ballymacad Foxhounds Hunter Show

- SATURDAY 10th July - Pony Classes -
- SUNDAY 11th July - Horse Classes -

- Ross House Equestrian Centre -

We are delighted to announce our first working hunter and pony show to take place this July.
Classes and entries will be posted this week.

For more info please visit our Facebook page or contact Donal on 087 2526421.

The IMFHA Foxhound Show 2021

- SUNDAY 4th JULY 2021 -

- At Stradbally Hall, Stradbally, Co Laois -
By kind permission of the Cosby family

Entries close on Thursday 17th June 2021.

For all enquiries please contact Angela Desmond (M: 086 8126861 E: or the Show Chairman, David Lalor MFH (M: 087 254 2114 E:

For further information about the show and to download Show Conditions, Class Schedule and Entry Forms, please go to our News & Events page.

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Protocols for Hunting During Covid-19

Under the present guidance of Horse Sport Ireland and Sport Ireland hunting is permitted to continue during Levels 1, 2, 3 and 4 of the Governments 5 Level COVID Framework, with restrictions. In all circumstances Government Guidelines supersede IMFHA protocols **Hunting members must follow IMFHA protocols and be restricted to Pods of 15.

- Please click here to download the full PDF of the protocols and feel free to use it for display or distribution -


Hunting like all other equestrian sports is to take place behind closed doors, with a set of clearly defined and adhered to protocols.

Spectators and Foot Followers should be deterred, unless in an official capacity or a guardian of a minor.

A hunt suspected of breaching protocols may be required to report to the IMFHA sub committee with responsibility. If found in breach sanctions may apply for that club.

Social media postings of hunting activity should not be permitted by clubs. We are grateful to be able to hunt and cognisant that even in normal times it has the ability to attract social debate.

Hunting has the privilege of being allowed to continue under these protocols. At all times we must be conscious and respectful of our communities who are all experiencing some form of restrictions or hardships due to COVID-19.

Some Hunt Fundraising Ideas from England

Like many people I have received a blizzard of emails from various hunts, cancelling all fundraising events - this is going to be financially devastating for a lot of hunts who have already had a tough winter financially.

The SABS are very good at fundraising on-line and it strikes me that with a bit of creative thought - some hunt fundraising revenue can be generated whilst we are all self-isolating.

Here are a few ideas...


NOT The Hunt Ball - A lot of summer Hunt Balls are not going to happen - BUT you could sell tickets on-line for £10 - 20 for "NOT The Hunt Ball." i.e. people purchase on-line, or post cheques, to buy email tickets for an event that is never going to happen!! Hunts can get as creative with this as they want - maybe you have an on-line guest list... maybe those who have bought tickets send in a "selfie" of what they would have worn on the night (just using a photo of themselves at another event / a funny photo of themselves from somewhere else)- maybe they post in requests of who they would like to "sit next to" on the night and what they would most like to "discuss" at this event, which isn't happening!!! Maybe on the night The "Not The Hunt Ball" send round an amusing email to all who have bought "tickets" with a spoof review of the evening etc etc. Actually, this could be quite fun - we are all stuck at home, so we have time to be creative!!!

Horse Events, the online entry portal, are running a series of "virtual events". You can visit their website and Virtual Team Challenge page to give you some other ideas.


People pay x on-line, or post a cheque, to enter. Round one - entrants are divided into pairs. Each of these couples go head to head. The "organiser" emails everyone to let them know who their opponent is in Round 1. Each couple then agrees between them a "time" for the match to take place - each sets up a chess board / back gammon board in their own house. They play their game using skype/facetime/texting or WhatsApping each other photographs of their move, each moving the pieces when it's their turn in their own house and then moving the pieces on the board in front of them with their opponents move... and so the game gets played. The winner goes through to the next round and so forth until there is a "final".


Pick 2 of your favorite photographs from your hunt this season - maybe a generous hunt photographer might gift the images to you. You can print these in volumes as post cards for VERY little money indeed by sending them to an on-line printer such as vistaprint etc. (We printed 1,000 HNB post cards the other day for less than £50!!) You can them "sell" them on-line / via hunt emails to your hunt supporters in packs of 10 - i.e. 5 of each image and you can sell them for a fairly healthy profit. You can save on postage by delivering some to the doors of your purchasers.


In this house we have a deep freeze still full of if I were running this - there would be a focus on the most inspiring "pheasant" recipes!!

If you think about it, there is a lot we can do, even in lock down. All we need to do is to get on the phone and brainstorm with each other, come up with some ideas and GO FOR IT!!!

These are just some initial thoughts so please get in touch because we can share ideas and get really creative!!

We are living in unprecedented times and so we need to come up with a new way of doing things... whilst this all goes on. 


'Hunting Hints & Breeding Thoughts’ by Roddy Bailey

Our latest featured article, entitled 'Huntsman's Hints', is an edited extract from Hunting Hints & Breeding Thoughts by Roddy Bailey published in 2017.

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News & Events

TRIBUTE TO GER WITHERS: A wonderful ambassador for hunting

Chairman of the Irish Masters of Foxhounds Association (IMFHA), David Lalor, led the tributes on behalf of the wider hunting community to Duhallow's Ger Withers. THE news of the tragic death of renowned Duhallow huntsman Ger Withers on December 29th at the kennels shocked the entire Irish hunting community.
Having had the pleasure of hunting with the Duhallow Foxhounds on a few occasions, both mounted and on foot.... From, 15.01.2021

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HUNTING: Crossing smashing country in great company

Dickie and Catherine Power enjoyed a great day out with the Co Clare Hunt. RUAN has form...for many years I had heard tales of this west Clare village.
In hunting terms, it was held in some awe. It is generally agreed among the handlers in Co Clare that to hunt in Ruan a horse needs to be able to jump a clear round on a 1.20m course. So naturally when the opportunity arose to make a pre-Christmas visit, I jumped at it like a claiming jockey been offered a ride in the Gold Cup. ... From, 25.12.2020

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NEWS: Norton Joins IMFHA committee

The Irish Masters of Foxhounds Association appointed James Norton onto their committee this week. THE Irish Masters of Foxhounds Association (IMFHA) announced the appointment of James Norton (right) on to the committee with immediate effect. Norton will be reporting to chairman, David Lalor MFH, and will be working on plans for the strategic future positioning of the Association in relation to the protection of foxhunting and other related matters. ... From, 11.12.2020

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NEWS: Hunting season gets started

Equestrians were delighted to get back out on the hunting field this week. Pictured enjoying a day out with the Kildare Foxhounds on Thursday is Mark Murtagh. The hunting season is finally up and running this week after activity was suspended in October. The Irish Masters of Foxhounds Association has published strict protocols. Members must book in, meets should be held in a remote location with no gatherings, and pods of 15 must be adhered to. See for a full list... From, 04.12.2020

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