Tributes paid to huntswoman who died after falling from horse at meet

Gemma "Gems" McCormick - The Quorn Hunt opening meet at The Kennels, Kirby Bellars, on Friday 23rd October 2015. EMN-151011-143420001
Gemma "Gems" McCormick - The Quorn Hunt opening meet at The Kennels, Kirby Bellars, on Friday 23rd October 2015. EMN-151011-143420001

Gemma McCormick pictured riding with the Quorn Hunt at Kirby Bellars last month

Gemma McCormick, who lived at Thorpe Satchville and was joint-master of the Cottesmore Hunt, is understood to have sustained head injuries after attempting to jump a fence on rural land in Cambridgeshire last week.

Gemma "Gems" McCormick at Fitzwilliam Hunt Opening Meet 2015, Milton Hall, Peterborough, Wednesday 4th November 2015. EMN-151011-143409001

Gemma "Gems" McCormick at Fitzwilliam Hunt Opening Meet 2015, Milton Hall, Peterborough, Wednesday 4th November 2015. EMN-151011-143409001

She was taken by air ambulance to hospital in Cambridge but died from her injuries.

Nick Wright, chairman of Cottesmore Hunt, spoke of the ‘huge sadness’ felt by members and supporters of the hunt following Ms McCormick’s death.

He said: “Gems was a wonderful joint-master and a generous supporter of the Cottesmore Hunt.

“We were lucky to have her as a master from 2012 - she was always immaculately turned out and quietly and efficiently fulfilled her role.

“She was a pleasure to go hunting with.

“Gems helped the Cottesmore through a very difficult period in her typically understated way and the hunt rightly acknowledged this at our 2014 AGM.

“We will always be grateful for the huge contribution she made. We have all lost a friend and a true and genuine supporter of our hunt.”

Alan Schroeder, chairman of the Quorn Hunt, said: “With deepest sorrow we learned of the death of Gems McCormick as a result of a riding accident that occurred out hunting with the Fitzwilliam Hunt.

“Gems has been an ardent supporter of hunting in Leicestershire, regularly out with the Quorn and the Cottesmore where she had been a master for three seasons.

“Over recent years she lived in Thorpe Satchville and has always been in great demand socially, full of life, always interesting, willing to participate, generous in every way and just great fun to be with.

“Her passion for horses extended to the showjumping scene. She owned showjumpers and was a supporter of Holly Gillott, who recently represented Great Britain.

“We’re all devastated at her loss and our sympathies are with her family and friends.”

Ms McCormick’s family were this week too upset to speak to the press about her death.