Patrick Till, who died in his 80th year on 21st July 2017 founded the Hunsley Beacon Beagles in the East Riding of Yorkshire, the county in which he lived, worked and hunted for many years.
The son of a Beverley solicitor, who was also a keen beagler, Patrick went to Haileybury public school where he spent any free time following the West Lodge Hare hounds and in the summer the Eastern Counties Otterhounds.
At home in the holidays he beagled and hunted with the Holderness and Middleton East when a horse was available, especially from the well-known supplier of international showjumpers Trevor Banks.
He was a law student in London and Guilford; foxhunting in Surrey did not impress him but he claimed to visit every single pack of beagles within striking distance of the capital, travelling on a scooter due to a shortage of petrol because of the Suez crisis.
Patrick was admitted as a solicitor in November 1960; the start of a long career, his ability in law was wide spread and using his intellect with common sense he was a huge benefit to anyone who asked for his help or advice, which he readily gave.
The same year he started the Hunsley Beacon Beagles, named after the beacon he could see from his bedroom window in his father’s house at Hotham, with drafts from various friendly masters. His hounds hunted country which before the war was hunted by the Burton Constable Beagles. They went out twice a week, Patrick often working in the morning before joining his kennel-huntsman with the hounds at the meet.
After 11 seasons he became a joint-master and huntsman of the Holderness foxhounds in ‘71. This meant he had to find someone to take responsibility for his beagles and he was lucky that Jean Dunn – a knowledgeable beagler – became master of the Hunsley Beacon, a mastership that would last for 30 very successful seasons.
At the Holderness with Dick Chapman as his kennel-huntsman, he showed consistent sport and accounted for many foxes. He retired from the Holderness in ’76, he then field mastered for the Bedale in ‘78/’79.
For three decades his life with Bridget has revolved around hunting with the Sinnington, supporting Bridget who was hunt secretary for 18 years before becoming a joint-master for another five. Patrick hunted twice a week, mostly on his beloved Duncan and his aim was to reach their combined ages of 100 which they would have achieved in January next year.
Patrick loved hunting and encouraged everyone, particularly the young, to enjoy themselves. Adrian Dangar said the Tills were his best puppy walkers – they walked puppies for 30 years and Patrick knew exactly how to look after and educate young hounds.
Patrick had great “fox sense,” getting in the right position to see the hunted fox away and had a wonderful distinctive holloa. Adrian said: “You knew who it was and you knew that it was right!”
Patrick took great pride in his beagles and every summer he took a selection to the Wales and Border Counties hound show where he showed them. Supported by his daughter Rosie, Ashley Doherty who is now hunting the BSS & NS beagles and other young people, this was the highlight of his summer. For many years he was on the committee of the Great Yorkshire beagle show and a steward at the Rydal beagle ring.
He was always a familiar sight at hound shows and Rosie read both the Foxhound and Beagles results from Harrogate to him in his final days. He is survived by Bridget, their daughter Rosie who inherits the Hunsley Beacon beagles, Bridget’s daughters, two sons Toby and Rupert from his first marriage, another son, Simon, predeceased him.