Period: Early / Mid Twentieth Century
Height: 7.5 inches
Width: 5 inches
Here lies Charlie the foxes pad beautifully preserved on an oak shield with ivorine plaque inscribed “Staff College Drag Hunt Pirbright 1939” and paper label verso “F. Chalkley, Naturalist, The Square, Winchester”.
One summer evening in the village of Pirbright, Surrey, Charlie heard a terrible noise; the sound of a huntsman’s trumpet. Panicking, he ran, and narrowly escaped the clutches of the hounds but was wounded as he dived into a ditch and taken to foxspital. There was no way the doc could pin the bones together, so sadly his pad had to be amputated. The shock was quite unbelievable. Questions such as would he be the same fox? and would he be able to enjoy a good standard of living? whizzed around his tiny brain.
Charlie arranged for his pad to be mounted upon this shield and displayed on his wall as a warning to his children about the dangers of the hunt. We can happily report that both his children and Charlie himself went on to live a long life, albeit with only three able legs.