Solid retail demand at CCM Skipton monthly prime cattle show Retail customers were out in force for Skipton Auction Mart’s April prime cattle show and sale, when Threshfield brothers Charles and Richard Kitching presented another in a long line of monthly champions.


Their first prize heifer, a 580kg British Blue-x, was knocked down for £1,731, or 298.5p/kg, to Bradford-based Ralph Pearson Wholesale Butchers, which was once again the volume purchaser and leading buyer among the heavier entries when claiming 12 of the 25 under 30-month clean cattle. 

Show judge Frank Wrathall, of Gisburn, remained in the same show class for his reserve champion, the second prize heifer, a 615kg Blonde-x from the Critchley beef farming family in Hutton, Preston, which grossed £1,928, or 313.5p/kg, when again joining Pearsons.

Looking to the leading performers on price, Red Rose retail butcher Phil Gregory paid the top by-weight call of 339.5p/kg, or £1,884, for a 555kg British Blue-cross heifer from North Craven father and son, Francis and Andrew Smith, of Masongill. 

The same buyer followed up with a 530kg Limousin-x heifer from the Jowett family in Queensbury at 327.5p/kg, or £1,736, making it a trio of buys when also taking home the third prize heifer and second highest gross price of the day, a 600kg Blue-x from Jim and Christine Scrivin in Elslack at £1,959, or 326.5p/kg. All are for the family-run DA Gregory & Sons Butchers in Bacup.

Hargreaves Farms, of Walton-le-Dale, Preston, again crossed the border to stand second and third in the bullocks show class, the runner-up, a 715kg Limousin-x, going on to secure the day’s top gross price of £2,063, or 288.5p/kg, when also figuring among the Pearson acquisitions, as did the best price per kilo steer and first prize in class, a 615kg Limousin-x again from the North Craven Smiths, which made 313.5p, or £1,928. 

Clapham’s Jonathan Townley returned with a 560kg Blue-x heifer sold at 327.5p/kg, or £1,834, and one of a brace falling to Knavesmire Butchers in York, while Robertshaw’s Farm Shop in Thornton also took home two, among them the leading per kilo lightweight heifer, a 430kg Limousin-x from L Bamforth & Sons in Wainstalls, Halifax, at 300.5p/kg, or £1,292. 

Every category of the 20 cull cows on offer proved good to sell, as trade increased again, with the best dairies now circa 170p/kg, topping at £1,371 and 173.5p/kg for two from a nice run of black and whites from the Downs family in Bingley, who also made £1,086, or 164.5p/kg, with a Brown Swiss.

Lean cows got away at from 135-150p/kg, while a pure Limousin cow from Charles Stanton, of Cowark, Clitheroe, caught the eye at 222.5p/kg, or £1,802, with a brace of British Blue half bred dairies from Geoff and Margaret Booth in Lothersdale selling to 216.5p/kg and £1,781. The overall cull cow average was 168.47p/kg, or £1,154.

The same morning’s sale of 60 rearing calves, when trade was slightly easier on the week, produced a top call of £475 for a Limousin-x bull from the Hayton & Stocks farming partnership in Bolton Abbey.