May Fair 2012

N.I. Dorset Breeders Take Exeter May Fair by Storm

May Fair_2012_010Ben Lamb and Supreme Champion with David Thomas (President) and 
Rodger Heggerton of Dale Head Foods

May Fair_2012_001Championship line up May Fair 2012


In what turned out to be the largest entry of Dorset Horn and Poll Dorset sheep at the two day, 2012 Exeter May Fair - coming in at slightly over 3000 head, both days proceedings were dominated by breeders from the Northern Ireland Dorset Club.

N.I. Dorset Club Chairman, Ben Lamb from Richhill, Co Armagh stole the show day proceedings with his mighty 145Kg Horn shearling ram Richhill Peter, winning both the Champion Horn award and the highly coveted Alfred Johnston Memorial Cup for the Supreme Event Champion, under Society President and Judge Mr David Thomas, Launceston, Cornwall.
Mr Lamb also won the Best Horn ram lamb class with another from his Richhill pen, while fellow N.I. breeders Thomas Wright, Ballymoney and W. & K. Carson Ballymena won a further two classes each with their pens of poll Dorset ram lambs.

The second day's action saw the two highest sale prices coming to N.I. sheep and six out of the top seven pen averages also collected by N.I. breeders.
Leading the sale day proceedings in what turned out to be a record breaking sale average of £902.78 for 129 rams sold, was Downkillybegs Strongbow - one of the first prize pair from W. & K. Carson, Ballymena. He sold for 4200gns to Society Chairman, D.W. Rossiter, Kingsbridge, Devon for his 400 strong ewe Huish flock. Underbidder here was Henry Tickler, Lincoln for his Mellor flock. The Downkillybegs pen of 7 ram lambs averaged out at £1527 each, the flock's personal best and second highest of the day.

Next in the pricing stakes and creating a new record price for a Dorset Horn at 3400gns was Richhill Peter the event's Supreme Champion from Ben Lamb. He sold to K.H. May & Ptns, Exeter, Devon, a regular buyer of top quality Dorset Horns, with the under bidder on this occassion, Derbyshire breeder, Sam Driver, for his Sandylane Flock. Mr Lamb's Richhill pen of three collected the top sale average of £1932 - making a truely memorable two days for the Richhill flock.
Next highest sale price of 3000gns and third highest pen average of £1464 came from the Sherborne flock, Dorset, owned and run by R.& R. Hole. Their top lamb was winner of the Signet recorded class and sold to Muncaster & Pritt, Cumbria for their Thornbank flock at Seascale. Under bidder on this occassion was Amy McConnell, Templepatrick, for her Beechmount flock.
Also helping the Sherborne average price was another pen mate at 2000gns who sold to three generations of the Robson family of George Snr, George Jnr, James, and Craig, from Doagh Ballyclare, for their renowned Ballyhamage flock.
Matching the 3000gns sale price was the best lamb from Raymond Hill's Olivertree flock, Doagh, Ballyclare. This favourite one from the flock's D4 family line sold to Nick Burringtion, Exeter Devon who manages the Exeter Livestock Mart and runs a large scale farming business which includes 120 pedigree Dorset ewes. Pushing hard on Mr Burrington's heels but just missing out was Mr & Mrs Ayres, Pembroke, Wales but who did finally manage to secure the other 1st prize winning pair from Downkillybegs at 1400gns for their Monalee flock.
The Olivertree flock recorded the fifth highest sale average of £1299 for their pen of 4 ram lambs. Coming in with the fourth highest pen average of £1338.5 was the Sandelford offering from father and son team G. & G. Henderson, Bushmills. They had the unenvyable task of starting the second day proceedings but managed to get it off to a rip - roaring start with a top price of 2050gns - a personal best for the Sandelford flock selling to relative breed new comer David Lewis, Pembrokeshire, Wales for his Pembroke flock.
Coming in sixth spot in the sale averages was first time exhibitors to the May Fair, T. & S. Knox, Armoy Ballymoney with their Riverview flock. Their pen of two ram lambs sold at 1350gns to R. & R. Hole Sherborne Dorset for their Sherborne flock and 1100gns to Tim Leese, Eccleshall, Stafford for his Outlands Flock helping the Riverview team to a pen average of £1286.
Hitting into seventh place in the averages league was the Ballytaggart flock of 7 ram lambs from Thomas Wright, Ballymoney who earlier had won the award for the best pen of five or more rams. Helping the ratings here was the flock's third lamb who sold at 2500gns to W.L. & H. French, Launceston, Cornwall. Another from the Ballytaggart pen sold at 1550gns to Mark Hayman's Houghton flock, Sidmouth, Devon. The Ballytaggart pen recorded an average of £1274 for seven.

Other Northern Ireland flocks who exhibited at the 2012 May Fair include G. & M. Cubitt, Glarryford, Ballymena who sold the best of their Kildowney flock offering at 1000gns to Roger Huxter, Credition, Devon for his Southham flock.
Seamus Mullan's Islaharan flock from Armoy, got a top of 720gns from A.J. & A.C. Kingdon, Newquay, Cornwall, while Samuel Caldwell, Rasharkin, Ballymena, topped at 650gns for the best from his Granagh flock selling to John Ryder, Holwell, Sherborne, Dorset. Michael and Catherine Maybin from Galgorm Ballymena, had to wait to the end of the sale to see their best lamb from their Galgorm flock, who stood fourth out of 33 rams in the single poll class sell for 550gns to the Rossiz flock belonging to Ross Sizmur, Okehampton Devon.
In the penned female section of the sale which numbered over 2600 ewes the top price of 350gns was paid by Trevor & Sharon Knox, Armoy, Ballymoney, for the first prize ewe lambs from R. & R. Hole, Sherborne, Dorset.
The first prize pen of hogget ewes sold to 345gns for Francis Fooks, Poorton, Dorset and sold to Henry Tickler, Lincoln.
All in all the ten Northern Ireland flocks had a very impressive two days at the Breed's main show and sale and showed of the quality of the sheep that is available from the province.

Sale avarage :- 129 Rams Av £902.78
Auctioneers :- Kivells & Husseys, Matford Park Rd. Exeter, Devon
Organisers :- D.H. & P.H. Sheep Breeders Association, Dorchester, Dorset.

May Fair_2012_015
William & Karen Carson with Best Pair and David Thomas (President)

May Fair_2012_019

Ben Lamb with Champion Horned Ram Lamb and David Lewis of Kivells Exeter

May Fair_2012_022
Ballytaggart’s Group Of Three. Thomas Wright, Gary Henderson,
Richard Currie and David Lewis of Kivells Exeter
 May Fair_2012_031

Ben Lamb with Champion Horn Exhibit and Simon Dunk of Osmonds