Forts show forté yet again at Skipton Lleyn Society highlight
The Fort sheep farming family from Steeton, near Keighley, was again to the fore at the annual Lleyn Sheep Society’s registered show and sale at Skipton Auction Mart.
At the society’s final show of 2012, brother and sister Terry and Beverley Fort stepped forward to secure the supreme championship with their first prize shearling ram Brightonhouse Ambassador, a home-bred son of Brightonhouse Long B, who has already produced progeny to 1,800gns. The Skipton victor sold for 900gns to A Robinson, of Wetherby.
Terry and Beverley, along with their parents Graham and Mandy Fort, are leading lights in the Lleyn sheep breeding world. Graham is chairman of the North & East England Lleyn Sheep Breeders Club, while Terry serves on the national society’s promotions committee. Between them, they have clinched numerous titles and prizes and for the past three years have won the north and east club’s annual flock competition.
At Skipton, the Forts also presented the first prize pen of five ewe lambs, all by the home-bred Brightonhouse Big T, who was responsible for their first prize and reserve champion shearling ram at last year’s corresponding fixture. In fact, they have now shown the first prize shearling ram for the past three years. This year’s red rosette-winning lambs found pastures new with M Kinnes, of Driffield, at £125 per head.
Top price in both class and show at 1,700gns fell to the third prize shearling ram from North Craven breeders H & M Dugdale & Son, of Borris Farm, Stackhouse. Shown by John Dugdale, the ram, by a Kirkby Stephen-based Lynda Jenkinson-sire, found a new home in Nottinghamshire with P Weaver, of Newark.
E & D Jones, of Machynlleth in Powys, were next best on price at 1,250gns for a home-bred shearling ram sold to Christine Thompson, of Helmsley. The Jones’s also sold a second ram for 950gns to AF Hodsman, of Monethorpe, Malton.
Welshman William Williams, of Bodtacho Ddu, Nefyn, Pwllheli, where Lleyn sheep first originated, had a particularly good day when presenting the first prize and reserve champion pen of five shearling ewes, also topping the prices in both female classes.
His first prize pen of ewes realised £240 per head when selling to J Kingan, of Dumfries, with Mr Williams also selling a second pen at £200 a head to Kirklington Farms, of Winkburn, Newark.
His top price ewe lambs realised £130 per head when becoming a further M Kinnes acquisition, while the same buyer also paid £120 each for the second prize pen of ewe lambs from Farmstock Genetics, of Selkirk. The same price was also achieved by a pen presented by AW Davies, of Pwllheli, acquired by G Morton & Sons, of Hull.
The 2011 Skipton champions, Ayrshire’s David and Jennifer Alexander, of Millside Farm, Galston, were again to the fore when selling two shearling ewe pens for £200 and £190 per head to local buyer Nick Speake, of Slitharo Ford Farm, Oakworth.
While overall selling averages were down on the previous year, trade at the 2012 renewal was described as positive. Shearling rams averaged £495 (£563.41 in 2011), shearling ewes £153 (£175) and ewe lambs £89 (£113.14). Show judge was Alison Moody, of Thirtleby in East Yorkshire.
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