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Results Open Retriever test 27.04.2024

The Wiltshire Working Gundog Society opened their working test season by holding their open working test on the super new ground of Manor Farm, Stratford Tony.

By kind permission of Mr & Mrs Hugh Cookson and farm manager Mr Steve Hockley.


We had fantastic judges Dave England, Ken Green, Annie Buckley and Henrie Fletcher.

Test I

Judge Henrie

Steward Wendy Brown

A long blind with no shot at angle from track up a slope.

When the dogs were returning a mark was thrown into the silage grass at an angle to the original line.

This proved quite a challenging test as if the dogs didn’t keep to the line sent, it became a handling exercise to get them up the slope, ignoring the track and also ignoring a track to the right taking the dog out of sight of the handler.

It was essential that the dogs marked well as the long grass proved difficult for many.

Thrower Damien

Placer Mike


Test 2

Judge Dave

Steward Wendy Bardsley

Mark thrown uphill into a field of long grass. The dogs had to first cross a field to pick a blind in a wide margin of rough grass in between the two fields.

This again proved difficult due to the tight angle to pick the blind. Some were drawn towards the mark and took a lot of handling to pick the blind.

Thrower Jason

Placer Sheena


Test 3

Judge Ken

Steward Mandy

A long mark at brow of hill followed by a blind at margin of field by the hedge.

Here as long as the dogs marked well and then kept to the line that they were sent on for the blind they coped well

Thrower Pete

Placer Emma


Test 4

Judge Annie

Mark thrown into cover

Long blind up a track with dummy placed on track by a large gorse bush. Blind to be picked first

Here as long as your depth perception was good the blind could be picked well however it was easy to stop the dog too short.

The mark landed in a clear spot in the cover however the dogs had to be confident enough to punch through docks and thistles.

Thrower Paul

Placer Jacquie


Test 5

A 4 dog walked up

Dave was judging out by the dummy thrower

Ken ran the line and Annie and Henrie sent the dogs.

Each dog had to pick a long mark landing out of sight over a ridge into margin of next field and a blind placed 10 yards behind the dummy placer. If the dogs kept to a good line on the mark they picked well, Dave was able to keep everyone advised if the dogs went too deep.

The dogs had to run past the rest of the dogs for the blinds maintaining the line.

Thrower Paul

Placer Jason.


Then back to the shoot lodge for tea, coffee and a multitude of cakes!

After some calculations by Judy 4 dogs were called forward for a run off. This was for 3rd,4th and two COM’s The retrieve was a long blind downhill placed at the corner of a barn. Two dogs couldn’t be separated so another run off down the same field to a mark thrown past the barn out past the tramline into the long grass.

The well deserved winners were


1st Robert Small & Troddenmills if only

2nd Kathy Hill & Flaxenfox Chephira

After the run off

3rd Jos Evans & Meridenred Devils Desire

4th Roland Stacey & Kensteen Kansas Star

Com Elizabeth (Sid) Davis & Greyhill Velvet at Bucksbrow

Com Melissa Brotherwood & Bellaroyal Montgomery Gold.

The first 3 in the awards winning vouchers by Skinners and goodie bags by Gamekeepers Goods.

The judges also received personalised thank you gifts from Gamekeepers Goods, I think Dave was especially pleased with his!


A massive thank as always to our willing band of helpers.

To our fabulous spinners Gamekeepers Goods and Skinners dog food.

A special thank you to both Judy my FTMS advisor and base camp major and Linda raffle organiser, armband giver and most importantly by saving my bacon printing out the running orders.


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