The annual New Year’s Day meet at Monmouth Castle was a much quieter affair compared to Abergavenny’s Boxing Day meet, and lacking in man’s best friend, the hounds.

Due to a case of kennel cough, the hounds that are a firm favourite of the event were kept at home but that did not deter nearly 30 horses of all shapes and sizes, along with their riders, from getting some fresh air in the first few hours of 2020.A magnificient Suffolk Punch named Rank with a braided mane and tail was one of the sights of this year’s traditional meet, a brand normally used as a farm work-horse of the early 20th century.Ridden by Helen Taylor-Davies of Ross, the animal brought many admiring glances from young and old.Pip Runsay thanked the Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers for letting them use the square and the hunt supporters for providing refreshments. "It’s lovely to see so many people here today supporting us," she said.