Abbeyhouse herd lands first Craven Dairy Auction title of 2016 Andrew Jennings, who runs the Abbeyhouse pedigree dairy herd at Hill House, Fountains, near Ripon, won his first Craven Dairy Auction championship of 2016 at the opening May show and sale at Skipton Auction Mart. (Mon, May 9) Andrew, who trades as Jennings Farmers, lifted the title with his first prize newly calven heifer, Abbeyhouse Stan Laurina, from the famed Laurie Shiek family, which has produced several Comestar proven bulls in Canada.

Sired by Gillette Stanleycup, out of Abbeyhouse Melba Laurina, the title winner came to market 15 days calved and giving 32 litres. She sold for £1,380 to Skipton regular Brian Blezard, of Ribchester.

The same vendor was also responsible for the third prize newly calven heifer, Abbeyhouse Sailing Lisa, by Premier-Kerndt Sailing, out of Abbeyhouse Rolo Lisa. Twenty five-days calved and giving 29 litres, she made £1,180 when falling to another regular Skipton buyer, Wick Williams, of Nantwich in Cheshire.

Standing reserve champion at the pre-sale show was Sammy Sudgen, of Dobfield Farm, Laycock, above Keighley, who started her Brontemoor pedigree herd five years ago and made an immediate impact in the Craven Dairy Auction show ring two years ago when her very first entry was crowned champion.

Her latest reserve, Brontemoor Bossman Lily, is one of her first home-breds to appear in the dairy show arena. It is by the renowned Genus sire, Bassingthorpe Bossman, out of Brontemoor More Lily. Calved for 14 days and producing 33 litres, the reserve became the top-priced heifer when selling for £1,570, again to Mr Williams.

However, it was the first prize newly calven cow, a second calver from commercial breeder Sally Wellock, of Oakworth, that went on to make top call of the day when selling at £1,640. This, too, fell to Mr Williams.

The 12 newly calven heifers on parade met with a much improved trade than of late, with the nine 1st quality entries among them averaging a healthy £1,315 per head.

The milkers were supported by a robust turnout of 17 quality young stock, with some strong pedigree yearling and bulling heifers up for grabs.

Stephen and Rachel Coates, of the Bailmoor herd in Baildon, sold seven nine to 15-month-old pedigree and pure-bred bulling heifers to a top of £720 for a Panda Red Factor Red daughter, which fell to Sammy Sugden, as she further builds her 45-strong holding of young dairy stock.

David and Jill Pennock, of Bolton Abbey, topped proceedings with their first prize maiden heifer, a strong 16-month-old bulling heifer at £850, which found a new home with Duncan Holme in Bolton Abbey, while Alan Throup, who runs the Dalesbrad herd on Silsden Moor, sold four well-bred yearlings to top at £810 twice, both to Andrew Parker, of Emley, Huddersfield. 
I Oliver & Partners, of Darley, run by Brian and Susan Barningham, made a clean sweep of the prizes in the in-calf heifer show class with pedigree entries due at the end of May to Aberdeen Angus and Holstein sires. The leading performer made £1,230 on joining show judge Frank Wrathall, of Gisburn, with a section average of £1,177.

Calves maintain strong prices
At the same day’s weekly rearing calf sale, the 25-strong turnout was well fought over, with some strong prices in each breed.  Fred and Mark Houseman, who trade as Church Farm Enterprises in Burton Leonard, were the standout performers with three top prices – a British Blue-cross bull calf at £395, best of the day, a Blue-cross heifer calf at £350 and a black and white bull calf at £135.

Limousin-cross prices peaked at £330 for a heifer calf from Hayton & Stocks in Bolton Abbey. The overall Continental-cross average was £318.60 per head, while native entries, headed by a £250 Aberdeen Angus bull calf from Elslack’s John Rushton, averaged £203.50. Black and whites averaged £103.75 each.