New Year trading at CCM Skipton began on a solid note with monthly shows for primestock, dairy cattle and calves.
A sturdy first turnout in 2013 of 84 prime cattle saw the champion and reserve both presented by Bernard Simpson, of Heathfield, Pateley Bridge. The victor, a British Blue-cross heifer weighing 485kg, joined James Robertshaw of Keelham Farm Shop in Thornton, Bradford, for 260.5p/kg, top price by weight, or £1,263. Coincidentally, 12 months on, both vendor and buyer were repeating their performances at Skipton’s opening 2012 primestock show.
Mr Simpson’s reserve champion was a Limousin-cross heifer, which achieved the leading per head price at £1,377, or 257.5p/g, when bought by show judge, Saltaire butcher Richard Binns.The same vendor also sold a second Limousin-cross heifer at £1,354, or 229.5p/kg, to K S Luck, of Halifax.
Trawden’s Jim Baines again figured among the principals when presenting a Blonde-cross heifer that also made £1,354 and 229.5p/kg, which also joined Richard Binns, while R G Church, of Askwith, achieved four figures with two Aberdeen Angus-cross heifers sold for £1,112, or 176.5p/kg, and £1,110, or 180.5p/kg, both to Dawn Meats, of Carnaby, Bridlington.
Under 30-month prime heifers to 590kg averaged 242.82p/kg, with heavier weights averaging 191.81p/kg. In the 30 to 48-months age group, the overall selling average was 129.21p/kg, or £709.35 per head, with top price both per head and by weight falling to a British Blue-cross heifer from Robert Davey, of Eldroth, also sold to Dawn Meats at £1,117, or 174.5p/kg.
Championship honours in the opening cast cattle show fell to John and Alison Spensley, of Stirton, with their first prize Limousin-cross cull cow, the pick of the beef entries, which also topped both per head and by weight prices at £1,106, or 161.5p/kg, when falling to Halifax meat wholesalers J&E Medcalf.
R G Church was again to the fore with two British Blue-cross heifers sold at £1,055 and £1,033, both 145.5p/kg, to, respectively, S&JS Thompson, of Gargrave, and JF Thompson, of Preston. Robert Davey achieved four figures again with a £1,012 Simmental-cross cow, which became another Dawn Meats acquisition.
H Downs & Son, of Bingley, had the first prize dairy-bred cull cow, with black and white prices headed at £992 by an entry from J Wellock. Cull cows sold to an overall average of £779.09 per head, or 118.14p/kg.
A robust turnout of 3,640 head of prime sheep attracted a full company of buyers at the ringside, with trade much as anticipated. Well fleshed lowland sheep were particularly good to sell, with a total of 38 pens of lambs sold at over 200p per kilo and to a top of £94 per head, or 276p/kg, for a pen of 34kg Beltex from Paul Simpson, of Wigglesworth. A further 54 pens sold from 175p to 200p/kg.
Hill lambs were slightly cheaper on the week, with handy weight Mules £12 to £15 over the weight and heavy Mules, 46kg upwards, around £9 to £12 over the weight. Standard Quality Quotation (SQQ) lambs from 25.5kg to 45.5kg averaged 159.2p/kg, while the overall average for the 2,368 lowland lambs and 828 hill-bred lambs was 156.1p/kg. Ewes proved better to sell, bearing in mind that there were a lot more plain ewes in the market for this time of year than is usual.
The prime lamb championship fell to the first prize pen of five Continental-cross Beltex lambs from John and Judy Garnett, of Draughton. Their 44kg charges made £110 each when joining Bowood Yorkshire Lamb, of Busby Stoop, with the same buyers also paying £95 per head for the second prize and reserve champion Beltex pen from WA,VJ&JA Towler, of Grindleton.
Bowood Yorkshire Lamb made further prize-winning acquisitions with the second and third prize Suffolk pens, both weighing in at 49kg and shown by CCM Farmer of the Year for 2012, Brian Lund, of Walshaw, Hebden Bridge. These two pens each sold at £72 per head, joint top price in class.
The first prize 41kg Suffolk pen came from CD&RF Kitching, of Threshfield, knocked down for £67 each to Woodhead Bros Butchers, of Colne, with the same exhibitor also responsible for the red rosette-winning pen of ten 41kg, Mules, acquired at £56 per head by show judge Bobby Booth, of Rossendale.
Robert Crisp, of Calton, stepped up with the first prize pen of ten horned prime lambs, weighing 45kg and selling for £58.50 per head, top price in class, to Andrew Atkinson Livestock, of Felliscliffe, Harrogate. Mr Crisp also presented the second prize and top price pen of 49kg Mules, which joined the same buyer for £59 per head.
Hellifield’s Paul Watson made two prize-winning acquisitions on behalf of Dunbia Foods, Preston – the third prize pen of 43kg Mules from Ian Mellin, of Malhamdale, at £53 each, and the second prize horned pen from N&M Sutcliffe, of Giggleswick, at £52 per head.
With a total of 442 cast sheep forward, cull ewes began the year at an average of £51.37 per head, with two noted Texel breeders sharing the joint top price of £134.50 – Doncaster’s John North and Hellifield’s John Mellin. Cast rams averaged £70.73 per head, the leading performer at £119.50 a Charollais from Nick Dalby, of Hartwith, Harrogate.