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Rain fails to put dampener on record breaking Royal Welsh Spring Festival

Despite the rain the crowds still turned out in force for the weekend’s two-day Royal Welsh Spring Festival. Barry Alston reports from Builth Wells.
Glebedale Lancaster Georgina took the inter-breed champion rosette for the second year running
Glebedale Lancaster Georgina took the inter-breed champion rosette for the second year running

A repeat of the overall cattle championship for a Beef Shorthorn, top honours for a well-known mother and daughter team in the sheep rings and a supreme award for a newcomer with a ’passion for pigs’ rounded off a record breaking Royal Welsh Spring Festival livestock section.


For the second year running judging in the cattle classes saw the inter-breed championship rosette going the way of Jill Williams and her daughter and son-in-law, Tim and Kitty Bodily, from Llanddewi Skirrid, Abergavenny, with their home bred Glebedale Lancaster Georgina.


The July 2013-born heifer is one of six brown and whites the family keeps alongside their well-known British Blues and highly successful competitive commercial cattle.


A Welsh Black heifer from another exhibitor with half a dozen females took the reserve title for breed society promotions officer, Sally Lloyd and her Aurdu (Black Gold) herd based over the English border at Luston, Leominster.

 

Sheep


Competition was even stronger among the festival’s record entry of 828 sheep drawn from 42 breeds, with the supreme individual title going to a striking North Country Cheviot ewe from Julie Earle and her daughter, Georgina, from Penybont, Carmarthen.


Though the family is already well-known for its showring capabilities, the home bred three-year-old is a newcomer to the parades but has all the makings for many more successes to come.


Interbreed judge and Border Leicester breeder, Oswestry’s John Evans had little hesitation in awarding his top rosette to the Cheviot, preferring her to a two-year-old Poll Dorset ram from Llyr James, Tregaron, Ceredigion.


Not many minutes earlier, however, when teamed with two females his Ty Croes flock was at the top of the inter-breed group of three placings, beating the reserve placed trio of Welsh Hill Speckles from the Carno, Powys-based family combination of Alwena and Tudor Watkins and Gwynfor and Bronwen Harding.


Pig classes drew what could well turn out to be the season’s biggest entry with more than 120 vying for festival rosettes and Pig of the Year qualifying places.

 

Champion


Remarkably, both the supreme and reserve champions had travelled to Builth Wells in the same trailer – owned by Brian Merry, who keeps his six-sow Pinehurst Middle White herd at Delamere, Northwich, Cheshire.


Piggy-backing with him was a two-year-old Large White boar from near neighbour Stephen Lockett, who only started keeping pigs last year in a bid to fulfil a life-long passion and has just one sow and her October 2015-born son, Bartington King David, on his smallholding.


But little did Mr Merry realise that his good deed would result in his three-year-old sow, Eaves Fairlady 7, finishing as runner-up to King David for the supreme championship.


The Hebridean Sheep Society took the best sheep stand awards with the Badger Face Welsh Mountain Sheep Society reserve, while the Highland Cattle Club of Wales finished ahead of the Powys Hereford Breeders Club in the cattle lines.


Portlands from Lewis Robertson, Ystrad Meurig, Ceredigion, won the award for the best presented sheep pen.

 


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Sheep
Pigs
Sheep
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Results

Cattle


Beef


Interbreed (Judge, R. Hartshorn, Telford) Supreme and female, J. Williams, Glebedale Lancaster Georgina (Beef Shorthorn); reserve sup. and res. fem., S. Lloyd, Trefychan-ar-daf Dilys 16 (Welsh Black).


Traditional, rare and native breeds (R. Hartshorn, Telford) Sup. and fem., J. Williams, Glebedale Lancaster Georgina (Beef Shorthorn); res. sup. and res. fem., S. Lloyd, Trefychan-ar-daf Dilys 16 (Welsh Black).


Traditional Hereford (R. Hartshorn, Telford) Sup. and fem., F.W. Cook and Son, Albany Oyster Girl 18; res. sup. and male, F.W. Cook and Son, Albany Oblivion.


Dexter (R. Hartshorn, Telford) Sup. and fem., S. and G. Thomas and Son, Carmel Midnight.


Sheep


Interbreed (Judge, J.R.W. Evans, Oswestry) Sup. and male, L. James (Poll Dorset); res. sup. and fem., J. Earle, (North Country Cheviot).


Group of three (J.R.W. Evans, Oswestry). L. James (Poll Dorset); res., Watkins and Harding (Welsh Hill Speckled Face).


Pedigree Welsh Mountain (R.J. Pepper, Haverfordwest) Sup. and male, E. Evans; res. sup. and fem., T.E. Price.


Welsh Mountain (R.J. Pepper, Haverfordwest) Sup. and male, T.R. Hulme; res. sup. and fem., T.C. and A.J. Tyne.


Black Welsh Mountain (H. Williams, Llandeilo) Sup. and fem., G.W. Hughes; res. sup. and res. fem., G.L. Hughes.


Welsh Hill Speckled Face (G. Jones, Aberystwyth) Sup. and male, Watkins and Harding; res. sup. and fem., Watkins and Harding.


Jacob (L. Jones, Erwood) Sup. and male, R. Jones; res. sup. and fem., R. Edwards.


Badgerface Torddu Welsh Mountain (G. King, Llanelli) Sup. and fem., M. Evans; res. sup. and male, M.J. Jones.


Badgerface Torwen Welsh Mountain (B. Watkin, Borth) Sup. and fem., A. Groucott; res. sup. and male, G. Jones.


Balwen (E. Eagles, Carmarthen) Sup. and male, T. Evans; res. sup. and fem., D. and M. Hughes.


Kerry Hill (S. John, Llanstephan) Sup. and male, E.O. Williams; res. sup. and res. male, T.R. Evans.


Hill Radnor (W. Workman, Brecon) Sup. and fem., D.C.L. and C.J. Williams; res. sup. and male, D.C.L. and C.J. Williams.


North Country Cheviot (R.A. Williams, Henllan) Sup. and fem., Earle Family; res. sup, and res/ fem., Meakins and Sloyan.


Ryeland (S. Bradbury, Narberth) Sup. and fem., S. and Z. Unwin; res. sup. and male, T. Wright.


Southdown (S.J. Smith, Castle Caereinion) Sup. and male, Wakeham-Dawson and Harmer; res. sup. and fem., Wakeham-Dawson and Harmer.


Greyface Dartmoor (M. Osborne, Bude) Sup and male, E. Bateman; res. sup. and fem., S.E.J. Hamer.


Coloured Ryeland (J. Reed, Hereford) Sup. and male, A.J. Mcvicar; res. sup. and fem., K. Gittins.


Llanwenog (A.M. Jones, Lampeter) Sup. and male, D.B. Williams; res. sup. and male, G., W. and Evans.


Herdwick (T. Postlethwaite, Holmrook, Cumbria) Sup. and male, R. Thomas; res. sup. and res. male, K. Flye.


Pure Lowland Native Breeds (J. Sinnett, Stockton-on-Teme) Sup. and male, L. James (Poll Dorset); res. sup. and res. male, L. Crowther (Poll Dorset).


Any Pure Continental Breed (J. Sinnett, Stockton-on-Teme) Sup. and fem., G.L. Davies (Charollais); res. sup. and res. fem., A. Groucott (Beltex).


Pure Hill and Upland Breeds (H. Havard, Sennybridge) Sup. and fem., E. Jones (Brecknock Hill Cheviot); res. sup. and res. fem., C., A. and R. Joseph (Brecknock Hill Cheviot).


Rare Breeds Longwool Section (J. Brigg, Warwick) Sup. and fem., J. Flanders (Cotswold).


Rare Breeds Shortwool Section (J. Brigg, Warwick) Sup. and fem., O.T. Jones (Oxford Down); res. sup. and res. fem., O.T. Jones (Oxford Down).


Rare Breeds Heath and Hill Section (J.W. Brigg, Warwick) Sup. and fem., S.D. Hendrie (Whiteface Woodland); res. sup. and res. fem., P. Campbell (Norfolk Horn).


Primitive Section (J.W. Brigg, Warwick) Sup. and fem., N. Mason (Hebridean); res. sup. and male, M. and V. Beesley (Boreray).


Young handlers (Mr and Mrs D. Morgan Usk) Five to seven years old: Malen Peris Jenkins; res., Dafydd Jones. Eight to 12: Tom Evans; res. William Crew. 13 to 16: Joe Williams; res., Cara Gittins.


Pigs


Interbreed (Judge, P. Clark, Dorset) Sup. and male, S. Locket, Bartington King David (Large White); res. sup. and fem., B. Merry, Eaves Fairlady 7 (Middle White).


Welsh (N. Kiddy, Sandy) Sup. and fem., H.D. and E.M. Roberts, Gwynys Model 2023; res. sup. and res. fem., W.P. Bernand, Burry Nina.


Large White (N. Kiddy, Sandy) Sup. and male, S. Lockett, Bartington King David; res. sup. and fem., C. Taylor, Hideaway Maple 300.


Any Other Modern Breed (N. Kiddy, Sandy) Sup. and fem., A.J. and C. Walton, Deva Nancy 1073 (Duroc); res. sup. and res. fem., A.J. and C. Walton, Deva Nancy 1050 (Duroc).


British Saddleback (M.J. Kiddy, Sandy) Sup. and fem., A. Phillips, Brydges Lady 310A; res. sup. and fem., A. Phillips, Llanllwydd Lady 243.


Gloucester Old Spot (M.J. Kiddy, Sandy) Sup. and fem., S. Whitley, Birchfield Bluebell 402; res. sup. and res. fem., S. Whitley, Birchfield Bluebell 797.


Tamworth (M.J. Kiddy, Sandy) Sup. and fem., S. Nicholas, Fairybank Melody 9; res. sup. and male, B. Warren, Courtbleddyn Jasper.


Berkshire (M.J. Kiddy, Sandy) Sup. and fem., S. Westron, Choller Royal Lustre 4; res. sup. and male, C. Impey, Fairoaks Nomafjira 4.


Any Other Traditional Breed (M.J. Kiddy, Sandy) Sup. and fem., B. Merry, Eaves Fairlady 7 (Middle White); res. sup. and res. fem., S. Westron, Choller Black Lady 28 (Large Black).

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