Breaking records across the board and attracting a phenomenal 400 livestock entries and in the region of 7,000 visitors in this its fourth year, Borderway UK Dairy Expo reinforced its position as the leading spring showcase for the dairy industry.
This Harrison & Hetherington hosted event at Borderway Exhibition Centre brought together the cream of dairy cattle from breeders from across the UK, together with a team of internationally-renowned judges. Developments in the industry were shared across the 135 trade stands, with many focussing on future proofing the industry.
Taking the 2015 Borderway UK Dairy Expo Champion of Champions, and chosen from the from the seven breeds competing in the event was Richard Bown’s Richaven Goldwyn Squaw 6, In announcing the Champion, Judge Hank Van Exel said: “The quality of the entries in the Holstein show is truly exceptional. The UK dairy farmers are excelling at breeding outstanding milking cows; I am delighted with the standard presented and applaud them.
“Choosing the Champion was a very difficult task, as those in the final line up were all worthy of this award, however throughout the day each time it came into the show ring, Richaven Goldwyn Squaw 6 just got better and better.”
Richard Bown commenting on the Champion of Champion award he scooped said: “I have been showing dairy cattle for the last 26 years, this is the first time I have received a major double award, and to receive the championship also – this really is the best ever day of my life. Our herd moto is seeing is believing, what more can I say!”
UK Borderway Dairy Expo is a high profile event in the dairy sector showcase calendar; this was powerfully reflected in the quality of the world-class judges present at the event. Responsible for the judging of the coloured breeds was Barclay Phoenix of Greenbank, Ontario, Canada.
Commenting on the whole event, David Pritchard the operations director for Harrison and Hetherington and event organiser said: “This has been an absolutely tremendous event and the feedback from all of the sponsors, trade stands and exhibitors is that in the very short time since its inception the Borderway UK Dairy Expo has become a resounding success.”
“It is well known that there have been many factors currently affecting the dairy industry, but we all feel that the success of today demonstrates that our dairy farmers, breeders and associated businesses have tremendous expertise and very solid foundations to ensure its future longevity.”
This year a number of the trade stands chose to use the Dairy Expo to mark milestones and launch products. Cattle Services (AYR) Ltd launched their campaign to celebrate 50 years in business and Embryonic marked their 25th anniversary by celebrating 25 years of their cattle foot trimming courses. Agri-LED launched their newly manufactured ‘Eco Range’ and the New Fresh Calc Bolus and New TK Everyday was launched by G Shepherd Animal Health.
The show also welcomed in the region of 50 dairy farmers from across Northern Ireland, William Thompson, NI agriculture manager at Bank of Ireland UK who sponsored the visit, said: “This is the third year that we have attended Dairy Expo. It is a very important industry event, it is the quality of livestock and the latest industry information which is on display that attracts the farmers.”
Entries for the showmanship competitions proved to be extremely well represented and hugely competitive. Scooping the Dairy Youth Showmanship award was Will Horsley of Woodcatt Herd, Catterlen, near Penrith.
The Horsley brothers, Tom and Will, both won their class competition. In the Championship, 17 year old Will Horsley also took the Dairy Youth Championship award, showing Woodcatt Explore Irene, a February born heifer calf.
Commenting afterwards Will, who works on the family farm, said: “I have been showing and entering competitions since I was nine and I am absolutely delighted to my first championship award.”
Both Tom and Will won their respective showmanship’s classes and batted it out in the Championship competition with Mark Bryson, Boghead, Lesmahagow, and Bob Lawrence, Grange-over-Sands.
Designed to enable the future generation to hone their skills in a competitive environment, the Dairy Youth Championships were judged by Lancashire-based Claire Swale, who’s an authority on Holsteins, a founder of Heavenly Genetics, and a regular Showmanship Judge in the the UK and Europe. She said: “With the standard of entries being of an exceptionally high standard it makes it very challenging to judge. It is a nice dilemma to have; it is both exciting and encouraging.”
The heifer junior champions were: Ayrshire Champion Sandyford LR Bunty from A Rimmer, Jersey Champion Eire Gammon Maime J from A Holliday & S Wake, Red & White Champion Riverdane Barbwire Advantageous Red from Riverdane Holsteins, Shorthorn Champion Shaunlea Geri 6th from Shaun Dixon and Brown Swiss Champion Kedar Alaska from T Lochhead & Sons, Holstein Champion Holmland Atwood Marie from B Yates.
The breed champions were as follows. In the Red and Whites, the Whittaker family, Shrewsbury, Andrew and Jane Whittaker, were Red and White breed champions, with daughter Steph and partner, James Doherty, taking the Jersey championship. Red and White honours went to the home-bred Knowlesmere Adventure Dream Red. Standing reserve was Robert Veitch, Ayrshire with Riverdane MB Strawberry.
The Jersey winner was Bluegrass Vindications Harp which has just been named reserve All Britain two-year old Heifer, Clifton Tequila Bracken from Steven and Claire Bland, Cumbria was in reserve.
Taking both the champion and reserve honours for the Brown Swiss was Robert and Sheila McColm, Wigtownshire with Soulseat Jublend Beatrice. In reserve was Soulseat Jackpot Dee.
Champion Ayrshire was Loukat Lucky, and owner Richard Bown. Richard Baynes, won reserve with Marleycote Brown Nell 20.
Dairy Shorthorn champion was a Marleycote-bred cow, Marleycote Princess Jill 31, now owned by the McLean family, Northern Ireland. Richard Baynes was reserve with Marleycote Songstress 17.
British Friesian breed champion was Adam Lawson’s Lismulligan Priscilla 41. Reserve was Mr Lawson’s Skyhill Rocket Pauline 2.
The Holstein breed champion was Richaven Goldwyn Squaw 6 from Robert A Bown. Reserve Richaven Rapture Rebecca from Robert A Bown.
The 2015 John Dennison Lifetime Award was presented to Sammy McCormick in recognition of his outstanding achievements in dairy breeding and exhibiting. Sammy was delighted to receive this prestigious accolade, and astounded when the winner of the 2015 award was announced.”
Sammy himself was overcome said: “This is a total surprise and I am absolutely delighted to accept this award. We welcomed John himself to our farm, and he was without a doubt a true champion. To receive this award is a great achievement for everyone involved on our family farm.”
Commenting after the show, David Pritchard added: “We are delighted that once again the Borderway UK Dairy Expo has completely exceeded our expectations, both in the terms of the quality of the animals on show and the number of visitors who attended. Our location in Carlisle and the excellent facilities at Borderway Exhibition Centre puts us in the perfect position to attract the very best competitors from the UK’s main dairy producing areas. The event was incredibly well represented and as a result of the very high standard of entries across all of the classes was a truly exceptional show. I congratulate all of the winners, and thank everyone who took part in the competitions.”
Dairy Expo 2015 was this year once again supported by seven mainline sponsors: Holstein UK, CIS, Clydesdale Bank, Norbrook, Farmers Guardian and two new sponsors, Carrs Billington and Pickstock Telford.