British actress Elizabeth Hurley is embracing her new rural life by holding her inaugural hunting party at her country estate.

The AUSTIN POWERS star bought a stately property in picturesque Gloucestershire, England earlier this year (03), and will make use of her $4.4 million (GBP2.75 million) farm house's spacious grounds by holding a shooting party in the upcoming weeks - and the 38-year-old has even been taking gun lessons to perfect her new pursuit.

A friend confides, "Liz has been having shooting lessons, because she wanted to be able to do it properly. Apparently she's really looking forward to it, and I'm sure that she'll be very competent. Liz is a lot tougher than people think."

However, Hurley is making sure her soiree will be a small affair, unlike the shooting parties Madonna has held with her film director husband GUY RITCHIE in their English countryside estate.

The pal adds, "It'll be her normal mates, rather than the showbiz lot."

21/10/2003 13:56