The Craven Dairy Auction year at Skipton Auction Mart began with a championship success at the January opener for father-and-son farmers Raymond and Robert Johnson, of Summerfield Farm, Felliscliffe, Harrogate. (Mon, Jan 9)
Johnson champion in ring
The Johnsons, who also lifted the title at last year’s October show, bagged their latest success with their first prize newly calven Holstein Friesian heifer, bought at Skipton as a bulling heifer. Having calved 17 days earlier and giving 30 litres, the victor sold for the day’s leading price of £2,180 to John Howard at Carleton.
The first prize newly calven cow and reserve champion from another father and son duo, 20 times Craven Dairy Auction champions Malcom and Robert Swires, who run their Holstein Friesian commercial herd at Haverah Park, Beckwithshaw, sold for £2,000, top price in class, to Tom Green, of Wigan.
Giving 45 litres, the second calver is by Myersdale Principal, bred by Geoff Spence in Northallerton. The same sire has been responsible for many Swires Craven Dairy Auction champions.
The Swires began the defence of their dairy title in the 2011 Craven Cattle Marts Stockperson of the Year awards in fine style when, from a consignment of ten newly calven cows and heifers, they landed a clean sweep of the prizes in the cows class, also presenting the second prize heifer.
A 27-month-old Holstein Friesian stock bull by Durham Atlas from Alan Throup fell at 1,750gns (£1,837) to Stephen Breare. Both vendor and buyer are from Silsden.
Geoff Eccles, of Worsthorne, Burnley, had the best of the in-calf heifers, acquired at £1,310 by David Berry, Thornton-in-Craven.
With a 40-strong entry, newly calven heifers averaged £1,747 and newly calven cows £1,691. Judge was David Holmes, whose runs his Wharfedale pedigree Holstein Friesian dairy herd at Castley, Otley.
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