Newbirks herd champion again at Craven Dairy Auction The Newbirks Holstein pedigree herd of the Lawson dairy farming family, of Mill Farm, Arthington, added another Craven Dairy Auction championship to its ever-mounting tally at Skipton Auction Mart’s opening September show and sale. (Mon, Sept 7) The reigning CCM Dairy Farmers of the Year secured a further title win with their first prize newly calven heifer, Newbirks Heliotrope 345, by the Semex sire, Curtismill Mr Sam, out of Heliotrope 325.

Making the 360 miles-plus round trip to the high profile fixture for the third time – they also landed the Skipton supreme championship in 2010 - the Bishops, who trade as A & R Livestock, secured their second title with the January-born first time shown ram lamb, Bishops Alladin, by the Ballydown Magnus son, Balbrydie Thor, acquired last year as a ram lamb from Aberdeen breeder Brian Wylie.

Shown by David Lawson and his daughter Susie, the three weeks-calved victor, giving 32 litres, sold for £2,000, top price in show, to regular Skipton supporters Alf and Andrew Townsend, of Southfield, Burnley.

Show judge, Mike Longster, who runs a 200-strong commercial dairy herd at Fellbeck, Harrogate, remained in the same class for his chosen reserve champion, the second prize heifer from Malcolm Smith, of Bridge House Farm, Laneshawbridge, which was shown by his 12-year-old nephew John Thorpe, a pupil at Skipton Academy.

The four weeks-calved runner-up, bred by JH Towers & Sons in Tunstall, near Carnforth, came to market giving 28 litres and was knocked down for £1,600 to regular Cheshire buyer Wick Williams, of Nanwtich, who againmade several acquisitions.

Robin Jennings, who runs the Stainbank pedigree Holstein dairy herd at Hill House Farm, South Stainley, near Harrogate, just failed in his bid to bag a sixth consecutive Craven Dairy Auction championship, when his only newly calven heifer entry was placed third in its show class, before selling for the day’s second top price of £1,620 to Mr Williams.

The first prize newly calven cow came from the Broad Fold pedigree herd of Calderdale’s Alan and Geoff Midgley, based at Dean House Farm, Ludendenfoot. By the Semex sire, Mainstream Manifold, the seven-days calved second calver, giving 36 litres, also joined Mr Williams for £1,320.

The Lawsons also stepped up with the second prize newly calven cow, which sold for £1,380 to Dacre’s John Marshall, while the third in class from David Leeming, of Burnt Yates, who was continuing his dispersal sale, sold away at £1,420 to SM Liddle & Son, of Huby. The top price £1,520 newly calven cow from Sally Wellock, of Oldfield, Oakworth, joined local buyer John Howard in Heslaker.

In-calf heifers were again in demand, averaging £1,270 and topping at £1,400 for an entry from I Olivers & Partners in Darley.  Horton-in-Craven’s Joss Lancaster was well supported with an offering of four five-week old Holstein heifer calves, which averaged just shy of £300. 
There were 40 head of dairy cattle forward, which met with a varied trade. Pedigree newly calven heifers averaged £1,479 and their commercial counterparts £1,433. Newly calven cows averaged £1,192.

Skipton’s weekly Monday rearing calf sale attracted a 75-strong turnout, which achieved a handy trade throughout, with black and whites remaining strong to average £102.45 per head overall.

Continental youngsters were a touch easier, though still averaged £352 each, with top prices of £455 and £400 respectively for British Blue-cross bull and heifer calves. Native calves again sold well, topping at £315 for an Aberdeen Angus bull calf from the Fort family in Glusburn, and averaging £265.70 per head overall.