History of The Kennels

17th January 2022

The Kennels at Goodwood were built for the foxhounds of the Charlton Hunt.

Words by James Peill

  • The Kennels

  • History


The 1st Duke of Richmond had acquired the modest old house at Goodwood in 1697 in order to go hunting in the neighbouring village from which the Hunt took its name. The 2nd Duke was equally obsessed with fox hunting, and his wife, a daring and courageous horsewoman, was also said to be great huntress. While he was Master of the Charlton Hunt, and proprietor of the hounds, from 1729-50, the hounds were kennelled in a long flint building in Charlton village. After his sudden death in 1750, and with the absence of his son and heir on the Grand Tour, the Hunt died out.

His son Charles, 3rd Duke of Richmond eventually restarted a pack in 1757. He preferred to set off to hunt from Goodwood rather than Charlton, but it is not known where the hounds were kennelled at this stage. The Duke did not immediately turn his attention to the kennels, concentrating first on building a fantastic stable block for his hunters, and secondly on adding a substantial new north wing to Goodwood House. It was thirty years later, in 1787, that the 3rd Duke asked James Wyatt to build kennels for the hounds.

The building comprised a central, four square house for the Huntsman. To each side were long low wings, not accessible from the house, in which the hounds were kept. These were subdivided into two hound ‘lodges’ each side, running from front to back: each of these would have opened out into small, separate open air courtyards at the back of the building, for which the foundations of the wall have been located, roughly where the trees now are. The kennels was especially famous for its heating: on the inner side of the building, each hound lodge was partly lined on one side with large iron plates, heated from behind by huge fires. There were also two feeding rooms, at the end of each wing, with stoves, used mainly to heat the very smelly offal cooked for the hounds.

The Duke of Richmond’s Hounds, as they were now known, returned to Goodwood in 1790 to be the best quartered in the country.

When the 6th Duke decided to recreate the Goodwood Hunt in 1883, new kennels were built over the road. These presumably replaced the original Whippers-in cottages, as the remains of the hound yards can still be seen. Next to them a flinted house was built for the huntsman at Huntsman’s Cottage (now Greenkeeper’s Cottage), with individual kennels for whelping adjacent. The new kennels themselves were in turn replaced in the 20th century by Hound Lodge. Meanwhile the original Wyatt kennels were adapted to provide accommodation for the four senior members of the hunt in the wings – the huntsman, first whip, stud groom and kennelman.

In the early 20th century The Kennels had a new purpose as the home of the newly formed Goodwood Golf Club. Now, it is a clubhouse for all of Goodwood members.

  • The Kennels

  • History

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