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Hexham Ram sale

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Hexham & Northern Marts held their Annual prize show and sale of Blackface Rams under the auspices of The North of England branch of The Blackface Sheep Breeders Association and offered for sale a catalogue of 299 rams from eminent breeders from across Northumberland, Cumbria and The Scottish Borders.

The pre-sale show was once again sponsored by longstanding supporters The NFU Office, Hexham and the company thank Messrs Reed & Bowman for their continued generous sponsorship of this important sale.

The prelimary classes of Shearlings and Ram Lambs were presided over respectively by breed and type stalwart John Pattinson, Hot Bank, Bardon Mill and Mrs Sam Murray branch secretary of West Deanraw and The Stell Green flock, Haydon Bridge.

From a level entry of 17 powerful shearlings Mr Pattinson worked tirelessly with a keen eye and years of invaluable knowledge to arrive at his final line up which many commented were a credit to all exhibitors and the modern type which had evolved over the last decade. 

A small but select entry of Ram Lambs were put before the lady judge and current North of England Branch secretary Samantha Murray who enjoyed her remit with relish and presided over both the individual lamb class and best groups of three.

The task of deciding the Best Scottish Type Ram Award and The Overall Championship fell to noted Newton Stewart breeder and authority on the breed Mr Colin McClymont, Cuil Farm, Palnure and the well-known figure in the Blackface world was diligent throughout.

The respective judges made their awards as follows;

Overall Champion – Shearling 110 – Messrs Murray, Stell Green

Reserve Champion – Ram Lamb 313 – Messrs Ridley, Shitlington Hall

Shearling Ram; 1st Stell Green 2nd Brownchesters 3rd Sewingshields 4th Yatesfield 5th The Steel

Ram Lamb; 1st Shitlington Hall 2nd Shitlington Hall 3rd High Leam, 4th Penpeugh 5th Allensgreen

Best Scottish Type Ram; 1st Quickening Cote 2nd Yatesfield (F Hall) 3rd The Dudlees 4th Townshields

5th Toft House

Best Group of 3 Shearlings; 1st The Steel, 2nd Carrick 3rd  Stewartshields

Best Group of 3 Ram Lambs; 1st Shitlington Hall, 2nd Allensgreen


With the ceremony of the show dispensed with an increased catalogue on the year was presented and following largely buoyant sales of ewe lambs, draft ewe and gimmers the male offering of this season were harder to place.  Despite a good crowd at the ringside breeders were choosy and commercial buyers were able to acquire sheep at easier rates than seen twelve months ago.

The sale leader was the second prize Scotch Type ram from Frank Hall, Yatesfield, number 180, by the £6000 Glenrath which was strongly fancied and travelled to a round £10,000 being knocked down in a two way split between the Toft House and Stewartshields flocks of Messrs Walton.

Next was ram 110 from the Stell Green flock of Andrew & Sam Murray & Sons, now of West Deanraw, Haydon Bridge.  This one by the £8000 Toft House was an exemplary example of the new type of ram to now be found at this centre and will undoubtedly be put to good use within the Hot Bank flock of the shearling judge Mr John Pattinson who backed his judgement to take the tup home.   

Shearling number 200 was the second offered from Stewartshields and this one by the £4800 Alan McClymont bred Kirkstead sire climbed to £5500 for Messrs Walton and shepherd Stuart Robson selling to The Carr Family, Camphill

The third placed tup number 141 from the Sewingshields flock of Jamie Murray was one of a number presented on the day by the £11,000 Ian Mcknight bred Dalhabboch purchase which after spirited bidding was knocked down to fledgling breeder and owner of the Evistones Estate James Pritchard, Otterburn.

The Toft House pen leader changed hands at £4600 and by the £16000 Wanwood hill stock sire this one was another to ring the bell on the day for Stuart Robson selling to the Nilston Rigg Flock of Annabelle Morshead and Benedict Bates.

Sewingshields sold ram 143 by a KIrkstead for £4500 to Messrs Robson Townshields and another from Stewartshields, number 201, changed hands for the same money, this by the £16000 Wanwood selling to Charlie Halbert, Prospect House.

Three were sold at a straight £4000 – The Steel sold number 95, by a Livet sire to Edges Green; number 170 from Yatesfield by £6500 Blackhouse went to Great Chesters and Stewartshields cashed 199 by a home bred son of a Wanwood to David Hope & Sons, Mouldy Hills.

Ram Lambs were largely unfancied however the reserve champion sold from Shitlington Hall, by the £4400 Greenleighton out of a Wanwood gimmer for £650 to the lady judge and Jamie Murray sold his best lamb from Sewingshields by a Townshields for £400 to Rachel Raine, Townfoot.

Leading Flock Averages;

FLOCK                         No. SOLD                     TOP(£)             AVGE(£)

Yatesfield (F Hall)       4                                  10,000             3,025

Stewartshields            10                                5,200               1,905

Toft House                  9                                  5,500               1,850

Whiteside                   6                                  3,800               1,825

Stell Green                  10                                8,000               1,770

The Steel                     5                                  4,000               1,710

Yatesfield                    10                                4,000               1,680

Wanwood Hill             9                                  3,600               1,233

The Hole                     2                                  1,200               1,150

Brownchesters           6                                  3,500               1,141

Cowden Burn              4                                  1,800               1,037

Leading prices;

£3800 Whiteside to West Nubbuck, £3600 Wanwood to The Steel, £3600 Prospect House to Mackenzie, Grantown on Spey, £3500 Brownchesters to Hot Bank, £3000 Sewingshields to Clennell, £2900 Whiteside to Greyside, £2600 Hot Bank to Stewartshields, £2400 Yatesfield to Sewingshields, £2400 Yatesfield to Shepherds Croft, £2400 Toft House to Greenleighton, £2300 Whiteside to Greyside, £2200 Carrick to Birtleyshields, £2200 Stell Green to Carrick, £2100 Toft House to Blagdon Burn, £2000 Penpeugh to The Lamperts, £2000 The Steel to Hareshaw, £2000 Yatesfield to Plenderleith.



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