Craven Cattle Marts is to run its second annual open charity sheep dog trials on Thursday, May 17 – and the 70-strong entries limit has already been met. Defending champion, Welshman Kevin Evans, is among them.
2011 charity trial winner Kevin Evans, centre, with his dog Spot, receives the spoils from Jeremy Eaton, general manager of Craven Cattle Marts. Also pictured are trials judge Tim Longton, right, English president of the International Sheep Dog Society, and joint organisers Carol and John Palmer.
It’s the first leg of a two-day Spring ‘special’ organised by Craven Cattle Marts (CCM) and will be followed by the annual seasonal sale of working sheep dogs at Skipton Auction Mart, on Friday, May 18.
After the runaway success of the inaugural charity trial last year - over £700
was raised for the 4th World Sheep Dog Trials held near Penrith in September - the event is to be repeated this month at Newton Hall Farm, Bank Newton, Gargrave, by kind permission of Craven Cattle Marts’ chairman Anthony Hewetson.
This year’s proceeds are to be split between the English National Sheepdog Trials and Sue Ryder Manorlands Hospice at Oxenhope, Keighley.
The English Nationals are, like the World Trials, organised by the International Sheep Dog Society, and take place from August 2-4 at Over Kellet, Carnforth in Lancashire.
Manorlands is a regular beneficiary of fund-raising activities centred around Skipton Auction Mart’s annual Christmas primestock shows and the Great Northern Pork Pie Fest for butchers from both sides of the border.
Charity trial entries are again being co-ordinated by sheep dog trials stalwarts John and Carol Palmer, of Twiston, Clitheroe, supported by CCM’s John Brotherton, of Addingham.
Carol said the majority of runners will be coming from the North of England, with a good number likely to be among the qualifiers for this year’s English Nationals and seeking to gain valuable match practice, supplemented by several Irish entries and the defending champion.
Mr Evans, of Penclyn Farm, Modrydd Brecon, Powys, said he intended to return with his 2011 charity trial victor Spot, a prolific open trials winner who went on to finish a creditable sixth equal in the World Trials at Lowther Estate.
Judge this year is Michael Longton, who runs Rooten Brook Farm at Quernmore, Lancaster, with his father Tim, English president of the International Sheep Dog Society. Both are trialists of high renown.
The charity trial begins at 7.30am and will run through well into the evening. Members of the public are welcome and admission is free. Refreshments will be available.
Many sheep dog aficionados competing and attending are also expected to take in Skipton Auction Mart’s annual Spring sale of working sheep dogs the following day, for which entries close on Friday. (May 4.)
The mart remains one of the leading sheep dog sales venues in the UK, with quality dogs at the top of their work always in big demand by both working farmers and trialists from England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland and overseas. Many command high prices and a good number of Skipton-sold dogs have progressed to bigger and better things in national, international and global trials arenas.
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