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Golden celebration for Hingham dog club

PUBLISHED: 10:32 10 June 2010 | UPDATED: 15:24 14 July 2010

A dog training club which grew from humble beginnings to become one of the largest obedience schools in Norfolk has celebrated its golden anniversary.

After 50 years, Pat Gordon, 86, still remains at the helm of the Hingham and District Dog Training Club which she began in her back garden, charging one schilling per lesson.

A DOG training club which grew from humble beginnings to become one of the largest obedience schools in Norfolk has celebrated its golden anniversary.

After 50 years, Pat Gordon, 86, still remains at the helm of the Hingham and District Dog Training Club which she began in her back garden, charging one schilling per lesson.

Now the club, which has graduated to the village's Lincoln Hall, attracts dozens of dog owners from across the county to its weekly obedience lessons and ring craft classes, which have produced many award-winning show dogs.

Last Thursday members past and present, two-legged and four-legged, were invited to reminisce about their time at the club during a special birthday barbecue.

Miss Gordon, from Hingham, said: “I do it for the sake of the dogs really. I do not make any money. That was never the idea.

“Every now and again you get a very difficult dog. It's a challenge and every dog is different, and when you get an improvement it's lovely.”

As a young girl, Miss Gordon grew-up with Labradors and golden Retrievers, but it was when she was given her first Alsatian puppy in her 20s as a birthday present that she began her love for the breed.

She became the head trainer for the Norfolk Alsatian Association in Norwich and her skills soon caught the attention of her neighbours who asked her to start the dog training club.

Miss Gordon said she has no immediate plans to retire, but hoped the club would continue one day in her absence.

“It would be very sad to end it. We've lasted 50 years and it would be nice to think it would continue for another 50,” she said.

“Nowadays everyone watches television. They don't get out anymore. It's nice to meet with friends who have a similar hobby and people you can speak to face-to-face.”


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