With livestock entries in excess of 800 and over 12,500 spectators through the doors, records were broken at this year’s Borderway Agri-Expo in Carlisle on Friday 2nd November. In the short time since its inception, the event has become England’s foremost winter livestock and agricultural show, and also one of the largest in the UK.
Tecwyn Jones with Black Beauty, surrounded by sponsors and judge Gareth Corrie (far right)
The overall cattle championship went to showman Tecwyn Jones of Llanwrst, Conwy for the second year running.
The Limousin cross heifer, Black Beauty, daughter of Shire Apollo was following up a recent win at Countryside Live, and prior to these two events had only been shown locally.
In the sheep section the overall champions came from Andrew Ballie of Carstairs Mains, Lanark with a winning pair of Beltex bross weighing in at 38kg apiece. The win also marked a second overall championship for Mr Ballie at the event.
The reserve cattle champion was No Likey, No Lighty a Limousin cross steer winning his twelfth major award this year. Owners Mr and Mrs M Alford had travelled 370 miles from Devon to be part of the show.
Mr Alford commented: “This was a tremendous show animal with a great carcass. We are delighted to be taking home Champion Steer and Reserve Overall Champion from Agri-Expo”.
Reserve champions in the sheep classes went to Cumbria’s own R Hall & Son of Inglewood Edge, Dalston, Carlisle. Their pair of Dutch Texel lambs were also the reserve champion pair of Continental/Down lambs.
Harrison & Hetherington were delighted to see this sixth annual event prove such a success, attendedas it was by sheep and beef breeders across the UK. Speaking afterwards Harrison & Hetherington’s Operations Director and Agri-Expo Director David Pritchard said:
“It was a fantastic day for the industry. The support was overwhelming, with a huge attendance and an exceptional quality of livestock. On behalf of everyone here at Harrison & Hetherington I would like to thank all of the judges, the exhibitors and the sponsors for their support. Without this support, Borderway Agri-Expo would definitely not be the hugely successful event that it has become.”
Breed societies were well represented with 20 societies attending, with a common focus on improving genetics for breeders countrywide.
This year saw the Bluefaced Leicester Society and the Charolais Cattle Society celebrating their 50th anniversaries. As part of the celebrations, the Bluefaced Leicester Society held a reception on their trade stand almost 50 years to the day since the Society was launched. Following a year long fundraising drive, they also presented, as part of their celebrations, a cheque for £4,500 to the North West Air Ambulance.
In raising a toast to the Society and its 1200 members Douglas Hall, President of the Bluefaced Leicester Society said:
“This is a breed society which reacts quickly to any changes in the market place. We are a strong society with good membership and at the moment the future of the breed is looking very strong”.
This year there were over 180 trade stands and one which attracted considerable interest was the Brampton Police Force. Their stand was designed to encourage farm safety and the importance of reinforcing this message from a young age. Having collaborated with Wiggonby Primary School students the stand was covered in posters demonstrating farm crime and how to prevent it.
Part of H&H Group PLC, Harrison & Hetherington called on the support of their sister companies to ensure the day ran smoothly. Members of all the companies found themselves involved, from selling raffle tickets to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support, to helping guide visitors to attractions. H&H Insurance Brokers, who offer both rural and commercial insurance, also used Agri-Expo to launch their 25 year celebrations with a win a quad bike campaign.
Cogent Breeding has supported Borderway Agri-Expo for a number of years but this is the first year they attended as a mainline sponsor. Operations Manager for Cogent Breeding, Stuart Boothman attended on the day and commented on their involvement:
“Just from being here today we have received a number of orders. It makes it well worth Cogent attending and it is also a chance to network and tell farmers about the services we can offer. Agri-Expo is a fantastic platform for us to mix work with pleasure, celebrating the success of the industry that is at the heart of our business”.
To conclude, a final word from David Pritchard:
“The team here at Harrison & Hetherington were delighted with the amount of entries for this year’s Agri-Expo.”
“There were some terrific animals through the show ring this year and only the very best walked out with that red rosette”.
Not just for the enjoyment of farmers, Borderway Agri-Expo has become a day out for all Cumbrians with many families taking part in the action.
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