West Cumbria

This is my last report before I hand over the chair to Chris Walton, one of our most Westerly members, farming near Bootle in a part of the Lake District that has views out to sea towards the Isle of Man.

In 2018 West Cumbria Members visited NSA Scot Sheep, held just south of Ayr and also the two day sale at Thame. Many thanks to Ken Pears who took wife Mandy for a day out at the Gloucester Sheep Fair, held at Cirencester and with him took a rosette for the Champion pen of North of England Mules.

As usual the weather was one of the biggest players last year with the shortage of grass on farms in the South knocking the prices at our autumn sales with many flock averages being £10 per lamb or more down on the year. Well done to all vendors for turning out such good runs of sheep at our four sales centres.

Results for 2018

Longtown (18.09.18)

Judge Mr T A Foster .

5,300 lambs averaged £78.25

Ex Northumberland Blackface.

First – M.W & C.M Ridley, Shitlington Hall.

Second – W and B Nichol, Lawston.

Third – A Carruthers and Sons, Peela Hill.

Ex Swaledale

First – J.T Davidson, Bellmount.

Second – W.H and D.A Gass, Nunscleugh.

Third – J.P Lee, Morley Hill.

Hopes Auction Co, Wigton (19.09.18)

Judges Mr A Greary and Mr H Hutchinson with Mr E Holliday as referee.

3,000 ewe lambs averaged £79.37

First – J.P Lee, Morley Hill.

Second – Messrs Ridley, Woodhall.

Third – Messrs Ridley, Woodhall.

Harrison and Hetherington, Carlisle (20.09.18)

Judges Mr E Allbutt and Mr E Holliday with Mr L Yarnold as referee.

4,500 ewe lambs averaged £92.34

First – Mr JW Smith Jackson, Hightown.

Second – Mr JW Smith Jackson, Hightown.

Third – Kilnstown Farms Ltd, Kilnstown.

Mitchells Auction Co, Cockermouth (21.09.18)

Judges Mr C Hewitt and Miss Julie Brough.

10,200 ewe lambs averaged £77.33

Small Breeders

First – J and W Bell, Highfield.

Second – G.L Hutton, Setmabanning.

Third – P and A Sowerby, Sandersons Croft.

Large Breeders

First – A and K Nicholson, Swinside End.

Second – A and K Nicholson, Swinside End.

Third – Messrs Faulder, Wescoe.

Prize for best run of lambs was presented to A and K Nicholson, Swinside End.

Many thanks to all our judges, referees and all our auction marts and staff, who make sale days run smoothly. Also a big thankyou to all our sponsors.

Congratulations to this years Shearwell Prize winner – Neil Marston, Highberries.

I am pleased to welcome our new branch secretary Christina Coulthard, whose family farm at the foot of the fells near Cladbeck. Thanks to Christina for taking on the job at short notice I’m sure she will do a great job.

Finally the ‘B’ word – lets hope the people that run the country make a deal with Europe that includes British Farmers. We must be optimistic and hope that things fall into place at the last minute.

Best wishes to you all for 2019.

John Ritson