SKIPTON Auction Mart’s annual multi-breeds sheep showcase for pedigree and pure-bred rams and females attracted another solid turnout of 897 head, with quality in abundance.

Main sales for Suffolks, Blue Texels and Zwartbles were supported by second sales for Texels, Charollais, Beltex and other breeds, which took place in both the MV and non-MV commercial rings.

One of the many highlights in the latter was a day’s top price of 2,400gns for a Beltex shearling ram from Ellis Bros on Addingham Moorside. It was by the Mair family’s Aviemore Will-I-Am, now standing with Cockermouth’s Neil Marston, who provided the Ellis family with semen from the well-known ram.

The same home was also responsible for a second 1,000gns shearling ram, by a home-bred tup and claimed by Frankland Farms in Rathmell, plus another at 800gns.

The MV Texel sale ring saw a strong trade for both shearling rams and ram lambs, the pick of them coming from Procters Farm Ltd in Wennington, Lancaster, which sold 17 shearlings to average £789 and 10 ram lambs to average £424.

Heading the Suffolk section prices at 1,000gns was the second prize shearling ram from Hetton’s Matt Reeday, who also presented the 650gns third prize winner. Both fell to the Lund brothers in Litton. The Lawn family from Skipton did well with a trio of shearling rams sold for 600gns, 520gns and 500gns.

Show champion was a shearling ram from first-time exhibitor Stephen Kirby, who runs the Kirby flock in Ainderby Steeple, Northallerton.

The Beltex championship fell to a shearling ram from Gary Robinson’s Gala flock in Embsay. The former physics teacher runs a small flock of 12 breeding ewes with his niece, Laura Robinson, who herself keeps an award-winning Beltex flock in Barnoldswick.

Charollais champion was Mark Worthington, of the Moss Side flock in High Moss, Ramsbottom, with the first prize shearling ram by a tup from his late mother’s Sandbrook flock.

As in past years, Blue Texels again sold well to a top of 700gns for a shearling ewe from Mark and Elaine Hartley in Roughlee, with ewe lambs peaking at 400gns from Miss H Dean, of Acaster Selby.

The show class for Zwartbles was won by a gimmer shearling from multiple past section champion, Matthew Beckwith, who runs the Sharphaw flock in Gargrave. By Joyfield Empire, out of a dam sired by the home-bred Sharphaw Cora, the class winner sold for 140gns.

Back in the non MV commercial ring, Steve Buckley, from Doveholes, presented a strong pen of Beltex-sired rams out of Texel hoggs, selling his pen leader at 1,100gns to the Huck family in Bordley.

In the MV sheep section, top price of 780gns fell to a Dutch Spotted from Ballymena’s L Campbell.