WHILE a good response to Skipton Auction Mart’s call for retail cattle in handier weights had a dampening effect on selling averages, a strong underlying trade was seen on Monday for the 24 under 30-month prime cattle for all tastes, including a good number at 530kg and below.

Bacup retail butcher Phil Gregory made another foray across the border to claim two for his DA Gregory and Sons Butchers, among then the top price per kilo entry, a 565kg British Blue-x heifer from ever-present Threshfield farming brothers Charles and Richard Kitching for 261.5p/kg, or £1,478.

Mr Gregory added another heifer, a 495kg Limousin-x from JW Stockdale & Son in Burnsall at 260.5p/kg (£1,289), the same per kilo price (gross £1,420) as a further 545kg Limousin-x heifer again from the Kitchings, this becoming one of eight purchases by weekly buyer James Robertshaw, five for his own Robertshaw’s Farm Shop in Thornton, the other trio for Skipton-based Keelham Farm Shop.

Bradford wholesalers Ralph Pearson bagged seven, including the highest priced per kilo steer, a 590kg Limousin-x again from the Kitching pen, at 257.5p/kg (£1,519) and the overall top price, a 620kg Limousin-x steer from Silsden Moor’s Simon Bennett £1,603 (258.5p/kg).

Twenty-one cull cows met another solid trade when selling to an overall average of 119.96p/kg, or £822.88. Black and white dairies were strong again, three hitting four figures and trading to a top of 132.5p/kg, or £1,098, for one from Anthony Bolland, of Bolton Abbey with steaking dairies often 115p/kg-plus. A Fleckvieh dairy from Norman and Sally Fort in Silsden made 135.5p/kg, or £1,091.

Of the natives, a heavy Aberdeen-Angus cull cow from Brian Church in Askwith sold at 137.5p/kg, or £1,238, with a Luing from R Gill & Son also doing well at 137.5p/kg. A single mature black and white stock bull from Eric Marshall in Summerbridge made 114.5p/kg, or £973.25.

A small turnout of dairy cattle for the fortnightly sale topped at a solid £2,550 for a pedigree newly calven heifer from Mick Blackwell, of Gargrave. The well-bred daughter of Silver Ridge Extreme joined regular buyer Mark Goodall in Tong, Bradford. Pedigree heifers averaged £2,166, with a freshly calved commercial heifer from Calton’s Robert and Ellie Crisp also making £2,300.

An increased entry of 48 rearing calves again attracted plentiful buyers, two new faces among them. Top call of £430 fell to a British Blue-x bull from Chris Harrison in Elslack, with the 14 Blue bulls on parade all selling away strongly and at £380-plus for the best end with both age and shape. Eleven Blue-x heifer calves sold to £300-plus up to £320, this again from Mr Harrison.

Of the native youngsters, flying trade for Aberdeen-Angus saw two heifers from the Bolland family in Airton make £285 and £280, black and white calves trading to £110 for a bull from JC&DJ Marshall in West End.