The show, organised by the Scottish National Fatstock club – a group founded more than 100 years ago to promote the production of Scottish prime livestock – this year included stock classes, a well-attended young handlers competition, a root and grain show, crafts and baking competitions, and a healthy number of trade stands.
Spectators crammed into the main show hall, where a quality turn-out of cattle was judged by Richard Wright of Somerset.
For his overall champion, he selected the best of the heifers, Honey Dime, a 19-month-old Charolais cross from Wilson Peters, Cuilt Farmhouse, Monzie, Crieff. This home-bred daughter of the 14,000 guineas Carwood Elgin, out of a Limousin cross dam, has already won a host of awards over the summer months, and most recently was reserve at Carlisle’s AgriExpo event.
Mr Wright said his winner stood out in what was a “very good show of cattle, as it always is in Scotland”.
At the sale following the show, Honey Dime reached the top price of £4900, selling to B & T Kitson, Hutton Rudby, Yarm, North Yorkshire.
Mr Peters kindly donated half of this money to the Doreen Cormack Stem Cell Fund. Doreen and husband Alistair have long been involved in cattle breeding. The fund is raising money for Doreen, who has had multiple sclerosis for more than 15 years, to have stem cell treatment in Mexico next year.
For his reserve overall, Mr Wright opted for the steer champion, this time a Limousin cross, from Neil Slack, of Newby, Penrith. Named Red Alert, this 17-month-old home-bred steer is by Rossignol and out of a Limousin cross cow which won its class at the Scottish Winter Fair ten years ago. At the sale, he went onto make £2000, to Cairns Butchers, Law.
Second best in the heifers was Rio, a Charolais cross by Doonvalley Harry, which was bred by the event’s chairman, Hugh Dunlop, Holehouse, Ochiltree, and shown by his new owners, Stewart and Lynsey Bett, Castleton, Airth, Stirling. This 18-month-old is now destined for the Welsh Winter Fair this week.
Reserve in the steer section went to George and Aileen McFadzean, Woodhead of Mailer, Perth, with their home-bred Limousin cross, named The Special One. Sired by Maraiscote Galaxy, this 14-month-old is out of a British Blue cross dam.
A new addition to this year’s show schedule, which has concentrated in the past on prime cattle and sheep, was the inclusion of a small dairy show, which was judged by Craig Davidson of Errolston Farm, Gretna.
The inaugural honours were lifted by a five-year-old Ayrshire cow, Swaites Nice Girl, a Willsbro Red Razzle daughter from John Adamson, Swaites, Pettinain, Lanark. The Ayrshire breed also lifted the reserve championship ticket, with, Langside Kelly 48, a Langside Gold Major daughter lifting the title for Russell Gray, Langside, Kirkfieldbank, Lanark.
Across in the sheep ring, the overall award went to the best of the butchers’ lambs, two Texel crosses, with a combined weight of 97kg, from John, Peter and Joanne Hall, Inglewood Edge, Dalston, Carlisle. April-born, this pair, out of Beltex cross dams, were selected by judge Jimmy Mulholland, who runs his own on-farm butchery at Great Orton, Carlisle. They later sold at £340 a head, to J Stark, Alton Farm, Milton of Campsie.
Reserve overall went to the reserve butchers’ lambs, another pair of Texel crosses, from the Whiteford family at Tercrosset, Westhall, Brampton. Weighing a total 100kg, this pair of ewe lambs, by Procters Rambo, sold at £270 per head, to East Mains Farm, Newbigging, Carnwath.
The mountain and moorland championship was dominated by the one family – the Cavers, from Sorbie, Langholm. Leading the way were the Blackface duo, home-bred wedder lambs by a Milnmark sire, shown by Elliot and Aileen Cavers, and weighing a combined 81kg.
Meanwhile, Elliot’s twin brother, Neil, and his wife, Elaine, secured the reserve award with their South Country Cheviot pair, home-bred wedder lambs, weighing a total of 90kg. At the sale, the Blackie two sold at £125 each to J Scott Meats, Paisley, while the Cheviot pair made £90 per head, to Dunbia, Carmarthenshire.
In the grain section, the championship went to John Galbraith, Upper Kinneil, Linlithgow, with reserve going to Jim Meikle, Linlithgow.
Best exhibit in the grass and silage section was won by Fred Murray, East Horton, Newcastle upon Tyne.