58 Grosvenor St
My dear Talbot
I believe you own one of the Coverts,<1> now unfortunately in dispute between the Duke of Beaufort and Mr Horlock. <2> If this is so, no doubt you have been applied to by one or both Parties, and have been informed of the several steps that have been taken by different Gentlemen with a view to get the affair settled.
In order to prevent a Collision, which seemed imminent, it was proposed at a Meeting of the Badminton Hunt 3 weeks ago. that an Appeal should be made to the Owner of Coverts in dispute (all attempts having proved ineffectual to induce Mr Horlock to [illegible] in a Reference/ requesting them to take the Matter into their own hands, and if necessary to appoint a Referee themselves. In accordance with this Resolution Warrall Blathwayte & I were desired to make this Application : a Letter of which I enclose a Copy was drawn up by one of the Gentlemen whose covert is disputed, and it has been signed by Blathwayte Ld Carnarvon Jas Neeld Harman Scrope & Ld Lansdowne (on condition that Ld Munster <3> shall be the Referee) & I have reason to feel confident that Poynder & Ld Holland <4> will sign it. Rooke & Starky <5> have refused. Methuen <6> refuses to do anything but what Ld Munster advises him, & Boode & Fuller <7> have not been applied to, but I must say I expect they will refuse. I believe this is the whole List, except Sr B. Codrington who has already taken the final step of warning off Hurlock: but I understand he will persevere in or withdraw his notices according as the judgment of the Referees may go. Now what I have to ask you, is, to add your name to the Letter.
Having now stated the case stoutly and ma
kde the application to you, I will not presume to guide you, beyond saying, that I ask no more than I should myself do if my Covert were disputed.
Please to send the Paper back to me at your earliest convenience
Yours most truly
London February Nineteen JHMB Estcourt
H. Fox Talbot Eqr
1. A thicket in which game can take shelter.
2. Henry Somerset, 7th Duke of Beaufort (1792-1853). Knightley William Horlock (1802–1882), author & huntsman.
3. Henry John George Herbert, Lord Porchester, 3rd Earl of Carnarvon (1800–1849); Joseph Neeld (1789–1856), MP & botanist; possibly E D Harman, son of Ezekiel; George Julius Duncombe Poulett Scrope (1797–1876), MP & scientist; William George Fitzclarence, 2nd Earl of Munster (1824–1901).
4. Thomas Poynder and Henry Edward Fox, 4th Lord Holland (d. 1859).
5. Captain Frederick William Rooke (1782–1855), of Lackham, Wilts, and John Starky, of Spye Park, Bronham.
6. Paul Methuen, Baron Methuen (1779–1849), MP.
7. Neston Fuller, of Monks, Wiltshire.