English Winter Fair Declared a Success

The 2015 English Winter Fair has been declared a resounding success by organisers, with entries for many of the classes significantly up on the previous year and a total of about 5,000 visitors over the Fair weekend.

The event, which was held at the Staffordshire County Showground, saw the supreme beef championship awarded to Red Hot Honey, a Limousin cross shown by Mark Harryman and Sarah Warriner, who farm at Pickering in North Yorkshire. The couple purchased the April 2014-born heifer from Kevin Sparke, of Hexham in Northumberland.

Red Hot Honey  shown by Sarah Warriner and Mark Harryman

Red Hot Honey
shown by Sarah Warriner and Mark Harryman

“We are delighted to have won the championship,” said Mark.
“My father and I actually bred her sire, Keskadale Eyeful, which makes this win even more special. This is Honey’s sixth championship title; others include a class win at the Great Yorkshire and at Countryside Live.”

Wilson Peters, who teamed up with Mark Jarrett for the judging, described the heifer as “tremendous.”

“Red Hot Honey has a beautiful top line and great width,” said Mr Peters, who comes from Crieff in Perthshire. “Her head is very feminine and she also has nice straight legs and good locomotion.

“I have never been to the English Winter Fair before but I will be returning; the standard of cattle has been very high and it is encouraging to see such a lot of young people getting involved in the livestock industry.”

Beef Cattle Auction
Led by Mark Elliott of Bagshaws, the auction which followed the cattle championships saw the hammer fall at £7,600 (£12.77/kg) for the 595kgs Red Hot Honey. The successful bidder in the crowded ringside was George Cropper, who was also a judge and is a partner in George Cropper Butchers, which is based in Accrington Market in Lancashire.

The top call in the baby beef competition was £2,800 for Black-Eyed Pea, consigned by R Millichap of Mid-Glamorgan and going to JL White and Son of Goole in East Yorkshire. Strong interest was also generated in the live sheep show, with the champion Beltex cross ewe and wether pairing entered by R Hall and Son of Carlisle secured for £310/head (£7.56/kg) by judge, S Gibbons, who is from Brecon in Wales.

English Winter Fair chief executive, Richard Williams, said:
“We have seen an increase in the number of crossbred cattle entered for this year’s English Winter Fair compared with 2014, with well over 430 live cattle exhibits. Pig carcase entries almost doubled on the year.

“The trade stand section was overflowing and for the first time, some of the machinery exhibitors had to be moved outdoors, due to lack of space. The country fair was also well-supported and overall, we feel that the event was a resounding success.”

National Pedigree Calf Show
The English Winter Fair, which started out as the National Primestock Show, once again hosted the National Pedigree Calf Show, in partnership with Cogent. Yorkshire exhibitors dominated the proceedings, with the overall winner Liley Eye Spy, a home-bred Aberdeen Angus heifer calf put forward by Marsden Farms of South Yorkshire. In reserve position was a Hereford calf, entered by H Whittaker of West Yorkshire and bred by JRB Wilson.

Carcase Auction
Another popular event on the programme was the carcase auction sale, which was conducted by Bagshaws. There was fierce bidding for the champion cattle carcase, a Limousin cross shown by Frank Page of Northampton. Weighing in at 370.4kgs, it sold for £4.70/kg (£1,740) to the judge, George Cropper, a farmer and butcher from Accrington in Lancashire. The overall beef carcase average was £3.66/kg (£1,397).

The champion lamb carcase was a Beltex, exhibited by DS and LE Wadland of Daventry, Northamptonshire. The 23.2kgs carcase made a tremendous £11.20/kg (£260), going to Manifold Valley Meats of Leek, Staffordshire. The overall average for lamb carcases was £4.08/kg (£86.74).

Manifold Valley also took home the champion pig carcase, a 54.4kgs Pietrain x Landrace x Duroc, entered by M Horsley of York. It made £2.25/kg (£122.40). The overall price in the pig section was £1.60/kg (£103.18).

The overall average in the turkey carcase hall stood at £3.82/kg, with competition for the champion, entered by R Butler, resulting in a bid of £15.50/kg (£155) from DRM and GM Maycock, from Halloway. The top-priced goose made £8.64/kg.

Organisers of the English Winter Fair would like to extend grateful thanks for the support of the event sponsors: Major sponsors: Cogent, Rumenco/Nettex. Other sponsors: Agrii; ADHB Beef and Lamb; AHDB Pork; Allflex Europe UK; Bradshaw Bros; Anne Bradshaw; Bagshaws; Barbers Auction; Blue Merle; John and Betty Bowyer; Carrs Billington; Dunbia; HP Westwood; CCM Auctions; The Farmer; GLW Feeds; RR and M Lawrence; RP George; For Farmers; RN Golden; Botanica; Harrison and Hetherington; Harry West; Sandra Hopley; G and SJ Johnson Engineering; Kerry Ingredients and Flavours; Lucas Ingredients; Moorlands Smallholding Supplies; Nantwich Farm Vets; NFU Mutual; Karen Sutton Scanning; J and F Powner; AE Poxon and Sons; Richard Signs; Robert Lee; G and R Roobottom; JB Sands; Startin Tractors; W Taylor and Son; Bruce Wardlaw; G and I Whieldon Bros; Willows Vets; Wright Marshall.

English winter Fair

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