Archive Article: 1997/04/11 - Farmers Weekly

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Archive Article: 1997/04/11

11 April 1997

One of the first big dairy dispersals of the new milk year took place in Cornwall last week, when nearly 300 cattle were on offer…

The sale was for Peter and Rachel Chapman who, with their two children, are moving from Hendra Farm, Looe, to an arable and sheep unit near Bude. "With Peter approaching 40, we felt that now was the time to make the move if we were going to," said Rachel.

Yes, dont worry, you are in the catalogue… auctioneer Barry Colton of Kittows has a last walk round the cattle before the auction kicks off. The herd average was 7116kg at 3.56% butterfat and 3.33% protein. That left a margin over concentrates of £1702.

No, its not the black-and-white minstrels… its some of the Cardwen and Hendrahill herds which made up this offering. Some of the stock found new homes in Somerset and Devon – but the bulk stayed in Cornwall. Thoughts of the selective cull have focused farmers minds on the need to find replacements, say the auctioneers.

A Springer – without the spring. With its broken leg, it was grateful for the lift!

Peter Littlejohn in a tight squeeze.

Eating on the hoof… Herbert Laity finds a minute for a cup of tea and a bacon butty.

A good crowd and a good atmosphere…. There was a buzz ringside, too, with a bulling heifer making £1050 and a third calver at just under the £1000-mark. Which left the Chapmans – busy filling the removal van – very pleased.

Hendra Farm dispersal:


Cows (157)757

Young stock (88)480


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Archive Article: 1997/04/11

11 April 1997

At Welshpool on Monday, 900 new-season lambs averaged 168p/kg. But the strong £ has hit exports, says auctioneer John Jones (left, foreground). And supermarkets, sourcing New Zealand product, are not yet buying large numbers. As they buy more, however, the ideal lamb weight will rise from its level on Monday of about 33kg, adds Mr Jones. Hoggets averaged 145p/kg at the mart. But those at about 60kg that would have been worth £90 a year ago, are now making under £70. National averages for lambs and hoggets on Monday were 163p and 138p/kg, respectively.

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Archive Article: 1997/04/11

11 April 1997

FARMING Friends is another of the groups of runners out to raise money for charity in the Flora London Marathon. This team of five has been co-ordinated by Town and Country, an agricultural PR agency, to raise money for the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution and other agricultural charities.

It comprises East Sussex farmer Mick Major, Gloucestershire farmer Will Pinker, Stuart Thompson from the NFU, Simon Green of Rhone Poulenc Animal Nutrition, Angus McKirdy, deputy editor of Arable Farming, Peter Bullen of Farmers Guardian and Phil Christopher of Town & Country. Inquiries (01952-291911).

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Archive Article: 1997/04/11

11 April 1997

SHORTAGE of space means that we can only print a few of the letters we received on this subject but here are notable quotes from some of the others:

"Be content with your lot. You never see a satisfied farmer". Ruthe E Durose, Staffs

"Make local friends with similar interests – a safety valve for you and them".

Joyce Hayward, Shropshire

"Learn your place. Dont try to compete and, in time you can attain a comfortable little niche behind the collie, the John Deere and Daisy (10,000kg/2nd calving) – just ahead of the muck spreader".

Celia Haynes, Hants

"Always have a bristle broom and wellingtons handy. I have always found a broom invaluable for turning animals. This was my first lesson when a large sow came in through the front door into the spare bedroom where apples were stored".

M S Ricketts, Surrey

"A wise farmers wife never volunteers".

Delyth Roberts, Anglesey

"Find time for yourself. Swamped by other peoples demands as farmworker, housekeeper, wife, general dogsbody and unchoker of drains when nobodys around, you can forget who you are". Fiona Sinclair, Orkney

"An ideal farmers wife puts up with a lot, does not expect to be appreciated often. Needs thick skin and one deaf ear".

A Stonier, Cheshire

"Always have a bottle of whisky ready for your father-in-laws visits. He will forget your lack of practical farming skills if you put enough in his coffee".

Sandra Murchie, Herts

"You dont have to justify yourself. A farriers wife is not expected to shoe horses!"

Joan Mason, Warwicks

"Learn to tie an unslippable knot with a piece of baler twine, essential when assembling calf or sheep pens, or gate to catch up cattle. Worth more than a degree in any "ology".

Sue Ledbury, Devon

"You will never know from your husband how good you are, but if you are lucky a neighbour will tell you. Do hope for more praise, but dont be too disappointed if you dont get it and just enjoy the life. It is good".

Sandra Perraton, Devon

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