Moorland-reared Mule gimmer lambs, carrying much better condition following a rare spell of fine weather, dominated the championship classes at the second annual North of England Mule Sheep Association (NEMSA) show and sale at Skipton Auction Mart. (Tues, Sept 22)


KM & L Throup, of Woofa Bank Farm, Silsden Moor, won the pen of 10s class, receiving the J Marsden Perpetual Trophy. The family, Ken and Lynne Throup, and sons Martin and Ian, were repeating their title-winning successes at the corresponding shows in both 2005 and 2006.



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 Their charges sold for both class and show-topping price of £96 per head to Cameron Walton, Hellifield.


Ashley Caton, of Otterburn Lodge Farm, Otterburn, chairman of show organisers, the Skipton branch of NEMSA, who had the champion pen of 10s at the opening sale earlier this month, sent out the runners-up this time around.


They made £92 each when bought by Margaret Watkinson, Sessay, Thirsk. The third prize pen from John Mason, Embsay, sold for £79 to co-judge Arthur Maude, Bradley, the price bettered by John’s fifth prize pen at £85, acquired by the other co-judge, Stan Bargh, Chapel-le-Dale.


Alan Lodge, of Westside Farm, Malham Moor, landed the spoils in the 20s class for the second year in succession, retaining his hold on the WCF Perpetual Trophy. The victors sold for £82 each, top price in class, to a purchaser from the Midlands, D Burton, of Oakham, Rutland.


Alan also presented the second prize pen, sold for £68 to Raymond and Robert Johnson, Felliscliffe, Harrogate, with the third prize pen, another KM & L Throup entry, making £75 each when joining Tom Parker, Downham, Clitheroe.


The overall average selling price of the 6,573 lambs forward was £52.48 per head, compared with £43.27 apiece last year, when trading conditions were more difficult.