CCM Skipton Auction Mart’s junior auctioneer Rob Cloughton has received a prestigious accolade from the Northern Region of the National Sheep Association (NSA) for his contribution to the sheep industry in the north.

He is the deserving winner of an award recognising a young sheep farmer residing in NSA Northern Region who has made achievements and contributed to the sheep sector.

Rob received the Geoff Lawn Memorial Award, presented at the recent annual members meeting in memory of the well-known and much respected Skipton sheep and cattle farmer, of None-Go-Bye Farm, a stalwart of both the NSA and the regional agricultural community who died in 2021 and was himself a familiar face and multiple prize winner in the show arena at his local mart.

Rob became a part-time auctioneer at Skipton early last year, following in the footsteps of both his grandfather and great grandfather, themselves well-known auctioneers in Wensleydale. He retains a close involvement with the family-run Browna Paddocks Farm near Hawes, which runs Swaledale and Bluefaced Leicester breeding sheep and their North of England Mule progeny, alongside dairy cattle.

Rob, who sells dairy stock and breeding sheep at Skipton, is currently in his second year of a four-year Livestock Auctioneers course at Harper Adams University in Shropshire, a specialist provider of higher education for the agricultural and rural sector. He said afterwards he “felt very privileged” to receive the award.

Also recognised for his valued contribution to the sheep industry within northern England and further afield was former secretary of Swaledale Sheep Breeders Association, John Stephenson, from Eggleston, Teesdale. He received the TI Allison Award, presented by NSA Northern Region trustee and fellow Swaledale sheep enthusiast Alan Alderson, himself a former SSBA chairman. Both men are familiar faces at Skipton.

John was SSBA secretary for 18 years, the position stemming from his family’s long established involvement with the breed since the association’s inception in 1920. He commented: “Having attended NSA-organised sheep events for more than 20 years in all countries of the UK I appreciate how much work is done by the NSA.”

NSA Northern Region manager Chris Adamson said: “Congratulations must go to both John and Rob on receiving these prestigious awards for the north of England sheep sector. Nominations for both indicated a high level of respect and admiration for their work which has been and continues to be integral to the success and future of the sector in this area.”

Craven Cattle Marts general manager and auctioneer Jeremy Eaton also received the NSA’s TI Allison Award – it is presented for lifetime achievement – in 2019 after having been nominated by the late Geoff Lawn.

CCM’s livestock sales manager Ted Ogden, who is chairman for NSA Northern Region, is also an industry sector award winner and in 2017 was named national 'Auctioneer of the Year' in the Farmers Guardian 'The Mart's the Heart Awards.