While temperatures soared outside on the hottest day of the year so far, the ring-side atmosphere was also hot at the Hampshire Down UK Premier Breeders’ Sale held at Halls Livestock Centre Shrewsbury, with averages and clearance rates up on recent years.
Buyers were in a buoyant mood with a top call of 1,550gns for a ram lamb from the Northern Ireland breeders Kevin and Anna McCarthy, of Comber County Down.
This outstanding lamb out of a home bred ewe by Clogherny Eric sired by Ballycreelly 007 by Ballycreelly What the Devil, is travelling to Bridgwater to Charolais breeders P. J. Tully, to join their flock of Hampshire Downs.
The winner of the Hampshire Down National Show the previous week at the Royal Three Counties a ram lamb from J & G Galbraiths’ Graylen flock, Cumbria was knocked down to the judge for that show, Kevin McCarthy for 1,500gns.
Out of another home bred ewe by Graylen Harley, it is sired by Graylen Laird. Combining figures and conformation, this top-quality lamb is in the top 1% for growth and gigot muscularity EBVs’ in the breeds’ 2019 lamb crop.
Selling to R Smiths & M Jones’ Birchfield flock, Telford, was the breed champion at the recent Devon County show and one of the interbreed group of three winners from the same show. From A Rundles’ Treworthal flock, Newquay, it was knocked down at 1,000gns.
This ram lamb is by Treworthal Savea who also sired the top price at Stirling sale earlier this year.
Another lot from the Ballycreelly stable and sired by Ballycreelly 007 sold for 950gns with a top 5% index. He was earlier placed first in the performance recorded ram lamb class.
Coming second in the performance recorded ram lamb class was another Graylen ram, a top 5% lamb out of their very successful 2018 show ewe. This lot was sold for 800gns.
Shearling rams peaked at 600gns from E & A Jones’ Morley flock, Wymondham, Norfolk selling to S Harries’ Llainterfyn flock, Whitland, Pembrokeshire.
This son of Thorbeck Montague by Kelsey Nobleman is out of a Graylen ewe, he stood third in his class at the pre-sale show.
Female trade was lively, with a top price of 700gns for a shearling ewe, who won her class in the pre-sale show judged by Mike Adams. Bred by D & D Middleditch & Son from their St Paul flock, Sudbury, Suffolk she is by Ashley Jackpot who is sired by Ashley Blackjack.
This ewe will be heading north to K & A Knowles’ Roadinghead flock, Cumnock, Ayrshire. Next at 520gns selling to Amy Byford, Lawshall, Suffolk, was a shearling ewe bred by J & G Galbraith from the Graylen flock by Graylen Javelin by Yarcombe Iceman.
D. C. & A & E Ritchie & Halcrows’ Parkstock flock received the top ewe lamb bid at 520gns for a Whitehead Draco sired ewe lamb.
This lamb will be joining L & R Krypczyk & Davies’ Lynrics flock, Henlow Bedfordshire.
Congratulations must also be passed to Messrs J & J Barnard & McPherson from the Stourfield flock who took overall champion and male champion with their shearling ram in the pre-sale show. Mr & Mrs D Middleditch & Son from the St Paul flock took reserve overall champion and best ram lamb who later sold for 650gns.
Female champion went to lot 30, a ewe lamb from the Ballycreelly flock with a top 25% index sired by Yarcome Flashman
Halls auctioneer Jonny Dymond commented: “The very best Hampshires were on offer today with many of them being sold having competed at the National Show the previous week. Buyers were prepared to spend money on the right genetics and best sheep.”
Shearing Ewes – £479.50
Ewe lambs – £408.33
Shearling rams - £535.33
Ram lambs – £673.58
Auctioneers: Halls. Shrewsbury.
The Northern Ireland premier sale will be held in Ballymena mart on Monday, 5th August at 7pm with the show at 4.30 pm.