Dominic West has revealed he took up hunting after moving to the countryside to avenge the foxes who ‘mauled his chickens’.
The actor, 51, relocated to Chippenham in Wiltshire in 2014, where he embraced a new way of life, having previously lived in London.
He started growing his own strawberries, kale and courgettes and kept chickens, but the birds met a sticky end one night when he failed to secure their pen.
Writing in The Oldie, he explained: ‘I raised chickens, rushing out in the middle of the night, barefoot in the mud, when we’d forgotten to lock them away.
New hobby: Dominic West took up hunting after moving to Chippenham, in the Cotswolds in 2014, as he took ‘revenge because a fox mauled his chickens’
‘I even took up hunting to avenge their mauling by the fox; charging terrified at fences, in the manner of Merrie Olde England.’
In December, Dominic came under fire after he was pictured having dinner in a group of seven near his home after an apparent ‘shooting party’ – breaking the Rule of Six.
Theatre producer Nick Allott posted a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #tier2picnic.
The Affair actor wore a flat cap and Barbour-style jacket, and was among seven around a table for eight, with enough cutlery for three courses.
In December, Dominic was pictured having dinner in a group of seven near his Wiltshire home after an apparent ‘shooting party’
At the time, the Rule of Six applied to outdoor settings in Tier Two areas, which Dominic lived in.
Friends of the group at the time cited British Association for Shooting and Conservation guidance, which said the activity was not subject to ‘gathering limits’, including the Rule of Six.
However, the guidance states shoots must conform to the relevant tier limitations and ‘the exemption of outdoor physical activity does not apply to associated social activity’.
Earlier this year Dominic’s wife Catherine FitzGerald, 49, revealed she is trying to convince the actor to move to her family seat in Ireland – after their marriage was rocked by photos of the actor kissing and cuddling Downton Abbey star Lily James, 31, in Rome in October.
Moving to Ireland? Dominic’s wife Catherine FitzGerald, 49, recently revealed she is trying to convince the actor to move to her family seat in Ireland. Pictured, the couple in February 2019
The pair are set to star in Emily Mortimer’s adaptation of Nancy Mitford’s celebrated novel The Pursuit Of Love for the BBC featuring Emily Beecham & Andrew Scott. Dominic was not wearing his wedding ring when they were spotted.
A source told MailOnline that Dominic and Lily spent two nights in a suite at the top Hotel De La Ville with a panoramic view over the whole city and just at two minutes walk from the Spanish steps.
Speaking in the March issue of Tatler, landscape designer and aristocrat Catherine said she would like to live full-time at Glin Castle, which sits on a 400-acre estate in Co Limerick.
The castle has been in Catherine’s family for 700 years and has famously played host to Taylor Swift, Sir Mick Jagger and Marianne Faithfull.
Catherine told the magazine: ‘I can’t persuade Dominic to move there altogether yet, but I’m working on it.’
United front: Dominic, 51, and Catherine put on a united front at the castle over Christmas, two months after the actor and co-star Lily made headlines in Rome. He and Catherine posed alongside their four children Dora, 13, Senan, 12, Francis, 11, and Christabel, seven, in a family photo taken in the grounds of the castle that was later shared on social media
The landscape gardener is the eldest child of Desmond FitzGerald, the 29th Knight of Glin, who died in 2011 with no son to inherit his title.
‘The title can skip a generation and my son [Senan, 12] could be the next Knight of Glin,’ Catherine explained. ‘But he’s just mad into football.’
Dominic, 51, and Catherine put on a united front with a photoshoot immediately afterwards and over Christmas. The couple posed alongside their four children Dora, 13, Senan, 12, Francis, 11, and Christabel, seven, in a family photo taken in the grounds of the castle that was later shared on social media.
The couple, who have been married since 2010, did not stand next to one another in the image and were separated by their offspring.