RED Rose husband and wife sheep farmers, David and Laura Coar, of Yew Tree Farm, Darwen, stood both champion and reserve with the two five-strong pens of home-bred show lambs they entered at Skipton Auction Mart’s June prize show and sale. (Monday, June 7)

It’s the time of year when the Coars regularly send out champion Spring lambs at the North Yorkshire venue and they were on the mark again with Continental consignments from their third draw of the season, with around 200 more still at home.

Taking the title were 44kg Beltex-x lambs by a Cheshire-based Paul Slater tup, the victors selling for £180 per head, or 409p/kg, to Knavesmire Butchers in York, while the 43kg reserve champion Texel-x pen, by a ram bred locally in Barnoldswick by Scott and Laura Robinson, made £160 each, or 376p/kg, when claimed for regular wholesale purchaser Vivers Scotlamb in Annan by their buyer John Gibson, who also judged the show classes.

The third prize 44kg Continental pen from Tom Hill and Ruby Wright, of Doncaster, sold for £170 to another regular wholesale buyer, Hartshead Meats in Mossley, Greater Manchester.

A standalone Suffolk-x show class was won by Steve Morris, of Dutton, Preston, his 40kg charges making £136 per head to Ashfold Quality Meats in Rochdale. The second prize 43kg pen from John and James Mellin, of Black Lane Ends, sold for £145 to Robertshaw’s Farm Shop in Thornton, the 48kg third prize winners from A&EM Ashby, of Farnley, Otley, knocked down at £159 each to Skipton-based Swaledale Foods.

The 2,261 prime lambs forward comprised an increased entry of almost 1,500 Spring lambs, as more vendors get into their first draws. Medium to heavy lambs were short of requirements and very good to sell, with the sale peaking at £202 per head, or £4.39 per kilo, for 46kg Texels from JA Gibson & Son, of Church Fenton, Tadcaster, selling to Brayton Farm Shop, near Selby, which also paid the top per kilo price of £4.54, or £190 each, for 42kg Continentals again from the Hill & Wright farming partnership.

Well-fleshed, premium quality heavies and mediums were keenly contested, with 51 further pens making £160-183, while quality 40/44kg handyweights tended to make £140/£155 and lighterweight smart sorts £130/£140, with odd pens such as one from D&A Livestock in Haverah Park, Harrogate, making £170, or 435p/kg, with 39kg Continentals, these again selling to Knavesmire Butchers. The same combination also traded 38kg lambs at £164 per head.

The Daggetts, of Burnsal, achieved £159, or 429p/kg, with 37kg Continentals and Toothill Bros, of Doncaster, made 423.1p/kg, or £165, with a 39kg pen. In total, ten pens made over 400p/kg, the overall Spring lamb selling average coming in at £135.72 per head, or 332.5p/kg. The 232 prime hoggs in the mix averaged £104.88 per head, or 233.5p/kg.

The next grade of premium lambs traded at 350-400p/kg, while a well-fleshed commercial lamb weighing 40kg-plus was able to command 330-345p/kg.