Fisher nets Skipton Wensleydale championship

Pictured at the Skipton Wensleydale highlight are, from left, Shelagh Prescott and the reserve supreme champion, Andrew Fisher and the supreme champion, and show judge Chris Stacey

Pictured at the Skipton Wensleydale highlight are, from left, Shelagh Prescott and the reserve supreme champion, Andrew Fisher and the supreme champion, and show judge Chris Stacey

First published in Countryfile Craven Herald: Photograph of the Author by , Deputy Editor

PEDIGREE sheep breeder Andrew Fisher, of Well House, Low Laithe, Harrogate, was supreme champion at the 123rd annual show and sale for the Wensleydale Longwool Sheep Breeders’ Association at Skipton Auction Mart.

Mr Fisher was doubly delighted with his first-ever championship success at Skipton, as he also works at the mart as a stockman and show steward.

He has only been breeding Wensleydales for three years and secured the overall title with his first prize shearling ewe and female champion.

The well-bred ewe has won every show class she has been entered for this year, including becoming first prize shearling gimmer at the Great Yorkshire Show and champion at Ripley Show. She sold for 380gns to W Rogerson, of Singleton, near Preston.

Show judge Chris Stacey, himself a well-known Wensleydale breeder from Buckfastleigh in South Devon, described his champion as “exhibiting really good feminine qualities”.

He also said the victor was more of working sheep than his chosen reserve supreme, the first prize aged ram and overall male champion from breed stalwarts and former Skipton champions John and Shelagh Prescott, of West End Far, Longhorsley, near Morpeth .

Home-bred, the reserve champion made 340gns on joining D Elsworth in Berwick-upon-Tweed.

The Prescotts were also responsible for all three prize winners in the shearling ram show class. Their red rosette winner made 390gns, top price in show, on joining Wallburn Hall Farms in Richmond.

Scottish breeder John McHardy, who runs the Endrigs pedigree flock at Kilmany in Culpar, near Fife, was also among the trophies when presenting the first prize ewe lamb and reserve female champion. Home-bred, she sold for 190gns to the show judge.

He was also responsible for the first prize ram lamb and reserve male champion and buyer at 250gns was M Bennett, of Penrith.

Averages were ewe lambs £157.50, shearling ewes £208.69, ram lambs £100.63 and shearling rams £208.43.

Challenge prizes were: Fawell Cup (champion sheep) and the John Percival Trophy (best female) – Andrew Fisher; Burton Silver Teapot (best shearling or aged ram), John Percival Cup (best shearling ram bred by the exhibitor), and Smalley Perpetual Challenge Cup (best ram) - John and Shelagh Prescott; Fawell Coffee Pot (best ram lamb) and Nettleton Salver (best fleshed ram lamb) – John McHardy.

Show results: aged ram – 1 John and Shelagh Prescott, Longhorsley; shearling ram – 1, 2 & 3 John and Shelagh Prescott; ram lamb – 1 John McHardy, Kilmany, 2 Nick Oliver, Carperby, 3, Yvonne Mudd, Knaresborough; ewe lamb – 1&3 John McHardy, 2 Nick Oliver; shearling ewe – 1&2 Andrew Fisher, Low Laithe, 3 Eddie Sherwin, Nosterfield.

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