A TIGHTER turnout of 1,698 prime hoggs at Skipton Auction Mart’s latest weekly Monday sale helped maintain trading levels closer than expected to the previous week’s flying trade when producing an overall average of £130.58 per head, or 301.1p/kg (SQQ 304.8p/kg).

All classes were good to sell, plenty of commercial handyweight Continental lambs making 290-310p/kg, those a little heavier generally 280p/kg-plus, with some commercial overweights around £100 over the weight or circa 260p/kg.

Per head trade topped at £190 (413p/kg) for 46kg Texel heavies from MJA&JR Sharpe, Gisburn, plus another pen at £189, while the by-weight high of 435.9p/kg fell to Beltex lambs from William and Michael Oldfield, Newsholme, the £188 section gross high going to Peter Longdin, Doncaster.

Beltex lambs were a sharp trade, several pens 400p/kg-plus and a breed average of 369p/kg, while Texel averaged 308p/kg, Charollais 309p/kg, Suffolks and Down-cross 290p/kg. Across the weight ranges, overweights at 52kg-plus averaged £160 281p/kg, 46-52kg heavies £144.06, 299p/kg, 36-45kg handyweights £127.28, 309p/kg, while 32-35kg lightweights, mainly horned lambs, were 235-265p/kg, depending on quality.

White-faced lambs made to £144, 411p/kg, for a 35kg pen from Seth Blakey, Bolton-by-Bowland, while Mules sold to £127.50 from the Heath family, Macclesfield, others of better quality in the £120s, Mule wethers averaging 270p/kg. Swaledales topped at £121.50 from P Addyman & Son Skipton, Scotch Blackface £123 from JE Greenwood, Denholme, Cheviots £132 from R Taylor, Preston, and Gritstone £130 from G Bland, Mottram.

Also penned for sale were 629 cast sheep, cull ewes topping at £274.50 for Texel from M Ryder & Sons, Haverah Park, Beltex trading to £234.50 from the Shuttleworths, Heber Park, Gargrave, who also headed the Mule trade at £119.50. Cull ewes averaged £85.96, cast rams £103.81.

In the cattle ring, a consignment of black and white cull cows from Paul, Janet and James Bolland, Airton, sold to a top of £1,427, 177.5p/kg, with good meat cows 160p/kg-plus, leaner sorts 130-145p/kg, the overall section average £1,104, 156.41p/kg. A mature Parthenais bull from M Bentham, Thornton, Bradford, made £1,384, 149.5p/kg.

Another strong rearing calf trade saw 41 head sell to £485 for a Limousin-x bull from G Pickersgill & Sons, Hawksworth. Of the other bull calves Blue-x peaked at £430 from Colin Whitelock, Gargrave, Charolais-x at £360 from J Peel, Newsholme, natives at £345 for an Angus again from the Airton Bollands, who also presented the £265 top price Angus heifer calf, Mr Whitelock heading the section prices with another Blue at £375.

Back in the sheep ring, the champion Mule wether lamb sold at Addingham & District Sheep Breeders Association’s 17th charity show and sale in December returned for sale earlier this month, raising a further £245 after first being claimed by Joe Bosworth, Rossendale, then mart-based Barkers Yorkshire Butchers.

It supplemented the £3,560 raised at the annual highlight for Sue Ryder Manorlands Hospice, Oxenhope, with original vendor Kevin Wilson, Blubberhouses, again accompanying his returning champion into the sale ring.