The 10,340 head of store lambs sold at Skipton Auction Mart’s latest fortnightly sale was the largest entry for many years, featuring 108 individual vendors from throughout Yorkshire, Lancashire, the South Lakes, County Durham and the High Peaks district. (Wed, Aug 22)
Pictured with the champion pen of 50 Mule Wether lambs at the annual Skipton highlight are, from left, exhibitors Freddie, Jake and Mark Harrison, judge Tony England, and Gavin Haworth, of sponsors JACS.
They were rewarded with a packed ringside, which saw a total of 76 different buyers from the length and breadth of the country return home with acquisitions from a wide-ranging selection of breeds to support all short, medium and long keep requirements.
Together with the weekly prime sheep sale and annual show and sale of shearling gimmers, more than 20,000 sheep were sold at Skipton over three consecutive days, one of the biggest throughputs in August in recent years.
Store lamb trade was similar to the previously fortnightly fixture when achieving an overall selling average of £60.52 per head, with 786 gimmer lambs also trading well to average £76.85.
The fixture again featured the annual show and sale of pens of 50 Mule Wether lambs, with the title falling for the third year in succession to Mark and Susan Harrison, who trade as V Verity & Son at Whitmoor Farm, West End, Summerbridge.
They retained the Stephen Foster Memorial Trophy, later seeing their lambs sell for £64 each, top price in the Mule/hill lamb classes, to DM & N Nelson, of Grantley, who also acquired the fourth prize pen from Malham’s Neil Heseltine at £62.50 apiece.
The second prize pen from Peter Webster, of Windermere, made £60.50 per head when knocked down to Gloucestershire buyers PG & CP Whitehouse, who also paid £62 each for the third prize pen from Derbyshire vendors MJ Wells & Son, of Monyash.
John Gill, of Burnsall, presented the highest price pen of 50 Continental-cross lambs, which made £70 a head, while a 63-strong Suffolk-cross pen from Gary Pickup, of Hellifield, headed the breed prices at £70.50 each.
A total of almost 1,000 Suffolk lambs averaged £63.90 per head, selling to highs of £73 and £72.50 for pens from Mac Iveson Partners, of Masham. Over 5,000 Texel lambs averaged £60.55 a head, while the 2,000-plus Mule Wethers averaged £56.77 per head.
More than 300 Beltex lambs averaged £65.84 each, selling to a high of £75 for an offering from Michael and Elaine Dugdale, of Giggleswick The three best Charollais pen prices all fell to CJ & DM Metcalfe, of Masham, at £68, £62.50 and £61.20, with an overall breed average for the 300-plus turnout of £59.27 per head.
Almost 500 Swaledale Wethers averaged £40.98 each, with Jack Wade, of Linton, presenting the top two pens at £45 and £44.50 per head. Over 90 Cheviot Wethers averaged £54.23 a head, peaking at £55.50 for a pen from Slaidburn’s Lucinda Woodcock.
Of the 336 Texel gimmer lambs forward, Craven Cattle Marts’ chairman Anthony Hewetson, of Bank Newton, was responsible for the nine highest priced pens, three of which sold for three figures and to a high of £112 per head. The 699 Suffolk gimmer lambs averaged £75.14 per head, with three of six pens sold by Adam Staveley, of Cowling, heading the prices at £96, £84 and £82 each.
The show was judged by Tony England, of Tiverton in Devon and sponsored by JACS Trade & DIY Warehouse, of Snaygill Industrial Estate, Skipton, which also gave cash prizes for the highest priced pens of 50 or more lambs.
The company is sponsoring Skipton’s Wednesday store sheep and store cattle sales until the end of October to the tune of over £1,000. JACS’ Gavin Howarth said: “Local farmers form an important part of our growing customer base and we are keen to support them through this sponsorship package at our local auction mart.”
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