David Towell wraps up Skipton gimmer lamb hat-trick Pure-bred Texel gimmer lambs from Glusburn’s David Towell, of Upper Leys Farm, clinched championship honours for the third year in succession at Skipton Auction Mart’s big mid-September store lamb sale. (Wed, Sept 9) His pen of ten home-bred lambs, six by his own Wigglesworth Spellbound, acquired three years ago at Skipton’s Northern Area Texel Sheep Breeders Association annual pedigree highlight in September, the remainder by a home-bred ram, won the Continental class and retained the Chris Hagar Trophy. They then sold for £115 per head to regular Skipton showman Robert Towers, of Camp House Farm, Farleton, Lancaster.

The Suffolk gimmer lamb show class winner was first-time exhibitor Adam Staveley, of Davy Hill Farm, Cowling. His ten lambs were all by Skipton-bought Suffolk rams, out of home-bred Mule ewes. They made £90 each, just bettered at a class-topping £92 per head by the second prize pen from F Reeday & Son, of Hetton, who were also responsible for the £90 third prize pen.

The annual prize show for pens of 40 or more Masham wether lambs fell to former Masham Sheep Breeders Association chairman David Wilson, of Beckwithshaw, Harrogate, for the second consecutive year. They were by a selection of home-bred Teeswater rams, out of home-bred Dalesbred ewes, and sold for £55 per head, joint top in class.

A standalone show for pens of 40 or more Dales Mule wethers was won by father and son Pateley Bridge farmers Joe and Trevor Stoney. Their pen made £54.50 per head.

Easingwold’s Ken Gamble, a regular vendor at the sale, was runner-up in the Continental show class for the third year on the trot, his Texel charges selling for £110 per head.

A total of 2,471 gimmer lambs were on parade, averaging £65.94 overall, with the day’s top price of £116 per head falling to a Texel pen from T Craddock & Son, of Bolton-by-Bowland. Texels averaged £68.58, Suffolk £64.22, Charollais £65.29 and Beltex £66.42.

The gimmer lamb show classes were judged by husband and wife Lambert and Joy Coverdale, of Beckwithsaw, and sponsors were JACS Trade & DIY Warehouse and animal ID firm, Top Tags.

They were staged as part of Skipton’s fortnightly store lamb sale, which produced an overall selling average £54.04 each (£59.03 last year), with individual breed averages as follows: Beltex £60.60, Texel  £55.25, Suffolk  £54.69, Mule £51.98, Swaledale £40.49, Masham £55, Charollais £50.93, Cheviot £55 and Lleyn £51.40.

A 10,000-strong entry is expected at the next fortnightly store lamb sale on Wednesday, September 23, which also incorporates show classes for Swaledale and Dalesbred wether lambs, while there’s additional interest for Mule, Dales Mule, Masham and Swaledale gimmer lamb breeders, with annual shows scheduled for Tuesday, October 6.