The final official Southdown Sheep Society Show & Sale of the year took place at Melton Mowbray Market as part of the Traditional Native Breeds Show & Sale on September 8th -9th.
The Brompton Flock takes the 2016 National Championship title
Top honours in the 2016 Southdown Sheep Society National Flock Competition go to the Glaves family’s Brompton Flock from Scarborough, North Yorkshire, with DG & MY Crundwell’s Ladywell Flock from Langton Green, Kent, being awarded the Reserve Champion Flock title. Both these flocks were entered in Class B for flocks comprising 10 – 39 ewes.
Winners of Class A for flocks of 40 ewes or more is Messrs Wakeham-Dawson & Harmer’s Ridings Flock from Offham, East Sussex.
Taking the honours in Class C, the Novice competition for flocks not having previously won a first prize, is the Huntspill Flock of Megan Chilcott and Percy Clatworthy from Highbridge, Somerset.
Judge Mrs Alexandra Long from Kent commented that she was impressed with all class winners, but was especially impressed by the entries in class B where she considered that the quality and attention to detail were paramount. Most impressive of all flocks in this year’s competition was the Brompton Flock, where Southdown lamb, born and reared on the farm, is sold in the family butcher’s shop. The carcases on display in the shop are “a lesson for any breeder”, said Mrs Long. The Brompton Flock is also awarded the Hobgen salver for the best intake of shearling ewes.
Suffolk breeder Mrs Amy Readhead-Higgins achieved success with her Sutherland Flock, picking up the award for the best ewe lambs, in addition to the Jim Cresswell trophy for the best rams.
Mr & Mrs Crundwell’s Ladywell Flock receives the Paynter Wool trophy for the flock with the best wool, in addition to being awarded the Noakes trophy for best three lambs of each sex, sired by a named ram which is present and shown.
The Beryl Marsh trophy for the best newcomer is awarded to Megan Chicott and Percy Clatworthy.
In her summing up of this year’s competition, judge Mrs Long made particular mention of new entrant Louise Chiswell - as a new entrant to farming and sheep, Louise rents in grass keep and stables for her sheep and fits all shepherding duties around the “day/night job” of milking.
Mrs Long thanked the Society and all the members who took part in the 2016 Flock Competition, concluding that it had been “most pleasurable and enlightening” to see flocks at home.