The Countryman's Weekly

Coursing

Coursing
August 05
07:02 2020

William ‘Billy’ Inns, a thoroughly professional coursing trainer

By Covid.

THERE is no doubt that in business your reputation means everything to your customers. The same maxim could be applied to the trainers of coursing Greyhounds in the 20th Century. Some of my forebears were certainly regarded as being great Greyhound trainers but were notoriously difficult to deal with when they were at the top of their game.

Harold Wright was described as being brusque and blunt, and many younger members of the family were cautious of him on the coursing field. Hardy Wright was often seen stomping everywhere wearing an impassive, scowling expression. The trainer under scrutiny in this article was perhaps never regarded as being one of the great coursing trainers, but he had a reputation as being one of the most professional.

Philip William Victor Inns, generally known to everyone as ‘Billy’, was born in the latter part of 1900 in Ware, Hertfordshire, with the family soon relocating to Claverley, Shropshire, after Billy’s birth. From my research it seems he was initially in the employment of Mr Stanley Martyn Dennis at Mayfield, Sussex.

The Dennis brothers, J.E. and S.M. Dennis, were industrialists from Widnes and as well as being partners in the family firm, they shared their love of Greyhounds – winning the Waterloo Cup as far back as 1909. However, by this time the brothers had ceased owning a kennel together and Billy Inns was the sole trainer to Mr S.M. Dennis.

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