May Day bank holiday breeding sheep bonanza at CCM Skipton On a traditionally busy day, an action-packed May Day bank holiday programme at Skipton Auction Mart again featured annual shows for breeding sheep – with a total of 2,756 geld gimmer hoggs and sheep with lambs at foot successfully going under the hammer. (Monday, May 6)

For the second year in succession, Skipton brothers John and George Stapleton, of High Skibeden Farm, again claimed first prize in the Continental show class with a pen of five from their annual run of Texel-cross hoggs with single Beltex lambs at foot. They went on to sell for £230 per outfit to GMJ Grainger, of Easingwold, with their total offering peaking at £240.
However, it was the second prize pen of Beltex hoggs with Beltex lambs from regular Derbyshire vendor, Steve Buckley, of Doveholes, that topped the day’s trade at £245 per outfit when joining CW Foster, of Bishop Wilton. Pocklington. The third prize pen from Hartlington’s Jeremy Daggett made £210.
Father and son, Raymond and Robert Johnson, of Summerfield Farm, Felliscliffe, who won the geld hoggs show class last year, were on the mark again, this time consigning the first prize pen of five North of England Mule hoggs, acquired at one the official NEMSA sales at Skipton last autumn, all with single Texel-cross Beltex lambs at foot.
They were by tups bred by James and Thomas Whiteford in Brampton and went on to claim a section high of £205 per outfit when falling locally to Harold Peel in Embsay, with the same vendors also responsible for the same way bred third prize pen, which made £170. The second prize pen from Malcolm Gratton, of Warsill, also sold away well at £195, his run averaging £179.
The tremendous entry of hoggs and lambs - 735 outfits with 956 lambs at foot - found a ready audience from start to finish. Despite trade being back slightly on last year it proved buoyant throughout. For the first time this year, white-faced hoggs and lambs outnumbered Mule hoggs with lambs and forged an impressive trade, with Texel-cross and Beltex-cross hoggs with lambs averaging just shy of £195 per outfit. Commercial type hoggs sold at £160-£170.
Former winner, Donald Sunderland, of Bramham House, Halton East, again took leading honours in the geld gimmer hoggs show class with ten North of England Mules also purchased out of Skipton’s NEMSA sales last year and all from local breeders. They sold for a breed top of £148 per head to judge Brian Bowness, of Burneside, Kendal.
Standing runner-up were A Wilson & Son, of Malham, and third Bordley’s John Lancaster, their pens selling at £120 and £117 respectively.
The 1,065 geld gimmer hoggs met a good trade throughout and in front of many people’s expectations. Topping the day was a pen of Beltex hoggs from Welsh vendor Hywell Williams, of Llanddeusant, which sold for £185 to BJC Robinson, of Great Ouseburn, Boroughbridge.
Other judges jwere Easingwold’s Andrew Grainger and Richard Batty, of Selside, with the show classes again co-sponsored by the British Wool Marketing Board and Top Tags Animal ID.