Bishops take crown at Skipton pedigree Beltex highlight Gloucestershire husband and wife Andrew and Becky Bishop, of Pitfield Farm, Eldersfield, were supreme champions with a ram lamb at the Beltex Sheep Society’s 15th annual show and sale of pedigree rams and females at Skipton Auction Mart.

The Bishops Beltex flock was one of the first to be established in this country. It is renowned for its carcase lambs, having won multiple top-ranking winter shows, including Smithfield. The Bishops report that they have some superb lambs by Balbrydie Thor in the carcase flock for this year’s Christmas market.

The victor, also male champion, is out of a home-bred ewe, from a Dooley Nutter-sired ewe, and joined Madders & Johnson, of Deer Park Farm, Stafford, for 1,800gns.

The day’s leading price of 2,500gns fell to a shearling ram shown by Red Rose breeder George Cropper, of the Hudhey flock in Baxenden. His April, 2014-born Signature Walter, by Clary Naevus, out of the Glantre Norris-sired ewe, Woodies Smarty Pants, sold locally to Rob Lambert in Wigglesworth.

Mr Cropper was achieving top price at the fixture for the second year in succession. Last year, he set a new Skipton Auction Mart record price for a single sheep of 9,500 guineas, again with a shearling ram.

Local breeder Karen Shuttleworth, of the Heber Park flock in Gargrave – she was Skipton Beltex champion in 2013 - produced the Woodies Ringleader son, Heber Park Well-Fitt, a shearling ram out of Corstane Stobo, which took second prize in a strong class and sold to Scottish breeders EJ&AM Fox, of Symonton, near Biggar in Lanarkshire, for 2,000gns. 

Standing reserve supreme champion was the first prize shearling ewe and female champion from the Dean Brown flock of Harry Wood, based at Popes Farm, Dutton, near Preston. The February, 2014-born Dean Brow Wishful is by Cree Spartacus, acquired three years ago for 3,000gns from Scottish breeder Jane Campbell.

Out of Du Mont Des Alouttes, an ewe imported from Belgium, the Skipton reserve is also a full sister to this year’s Royal Welsh champion, while the same sire was also responsible for the 2015 Great Yorkshire Show reserve female champion. She was bought by AJ Wood & Son, of Whittingham, Preston, for 1,600gns.

Northern Ireland produced the first prize shearling ram and reserve male champion, which came from the Artnagullion flock of Elizabeth McAllister, which she runs with her brother William at Kells, near Ballymena, and was also responsible for last year’s female champion.

The February, 2014-born Artnagullion Worthy is one of triplets born to the 12,500gns Woodies Snoop Dog, bred in Aberdeenshire by Stuart Wood, who has also produced some worthy champions for the McAllisters and has sired sons to 7,000gns

The dam, Artnagullion Mika, was supreme champion at Balmoral as a gimmer lamb and is described as one of the best breeding ewes in the flock. Worthy, whose full sister was Balmoral and Irish Show champion this year, lived up to his name in the sale ring when selling for 1,600gns to another local breeder, Michael Hall, of Airton.

Reserve female champion was the first prize aged ewe from County Durham’s Anne Moss, who runs the Holmebeck flock at Ewebank Farm, Rokeby, near Barnard Castle. The 2011-born four-shear Holmebeck Roxanne is a daughter of Buckles Masterpiece, bred in Barras, Kirkby Stephen, by K&R Buckle, out of Holmebeck Nefertiti, whose grand dam was the 6,000gns Airyolland Looby Lie.

Mrs Moss, who has been breeding and showing Beltex since 2001, said this was likely to be her swansong in the show arena, as she is now winding down and was staging a dispersal sale at the fixture. She signed off by selling her reserve female for 1,300gns to aforementioned Aberdeenshire breeder Stuart Wood, of Skene.

However, that wasn’t quite the end of it, as Mrs Moss also picked up a second red rosette with her first prize aged ram, the Dooley Napal son, Bardnaheigh Talisker, out of Airyolland Roxanne. He sold for 1,300gns to J Whitton, of Goole.

The ewe lamb show class was won by the Rathbone flock of Michael Davis and his daughter Becky, based at Ravenshaw Farm, Eldroth, Austwick, Their March-born Rathbone Audrey, one of twins by Holmebeck Tonto, also bred by Ann Moss, out of the home-bred dam, Rathbone Paris, sold for440gns, again to AJ Wood & Son.

Stuart Curries’s Beautry flock in Rathmell, near Settle, was responsible for another high priced female with his February, 2014-born shearling ewe, Beautry Wanda, by Lyonpark Thrust, out of the Dooley Nissan daughter, Beautry Rosalie, which sold for 1,550gns to Irish buyer Andrew McCutcheon, of Trillick in County Tyrone.

Sale averages, with comparisons to last year, were: Gimmer Lambs £294 (2014 £407). Shearling Gimmers £529 (£395), Aged Ewes £455 (£537), Ram Lambs £666 (£406), Shearling Rams £633 (£726), Aged Rams £997 (£1,325). Full results and other chief prices are at

Show judge was Paul Tippetts, of Shifnal in Shrophire, with Skipton-based Windle Beech Winthrop and JG Animal Health again sponsoring.