Junior Farmers Overwintering & Weekly Store Sale

1st April 2024

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Darlington Farmers Auction Mart held their Junior Farmers Overwintering Competition in conjunction with their weekly sale of Cast Cattle, Store and Breeding Stock on Monday 1st April 2024. Forward were 165 Cattle, 497 Sheep and 10 Pigs.

34 Cast Cows & OTM sold to 266ppk or £1716
2 Stock Bulls sold to 226ppk or £1856
9 Young Bulls sold to £1080
43 Store Steers sold to £1690
81 Store Heifers sold to £1740
276 Store Hoggs sold to £187
27 Feeding Ewes sold to £134
76 Ewes with Lambs at Foot sold to £312
10 Pigs sold to 189ppk or £140

Junior Farmers Overwintering – Another terrific offering from our budding youngsters as the twenty-seven of them presented forty-six cattle afore our Master Judge Mr Philip Parkin, Howden; the Facebook famous Philip carried out his task impeccably in awarding the £1000 prize fund and we offer him our sincere gratitude for both his time and his expert opinion.

The Champion rosette on the day went to an excellent Limousin heifer from nineteen-year-old Harry Askwith of Low Mown Meadows, Crook; the astute purchase was made in our store ring back in December from T H Mace & Sons, Hill Top Farm, Esh and was duly fed and brought out to perfection to steal the bragging rights at this year’s show. The reserve ticket went to a beautiful British Blue heifer from eight-year-old Ava Wilson, Throstlenest Farm, Lanchester in her first year competing, Ava picked her classy lassie out at our November suckled calf show from the prolific Stones family of Nun Cote Nook Farm, Marrick. The lucrative prize for showmanship and presentation was deservedly won by Michael Brannen, Scar Top, Temple Sowerby whose expert handling and presentation of a show beast defied his mere fifteen-years-of age and he is undoubtedly one to watch in future.
With the fun of the showing done and dusted on Sunday afternoon, on Monday the youngsters got down to business as we found out who claimed the most profit. Firstly, we should say well done to them all as the total gain equated to a marvellous £373.15 per beast as an average which in short sends a wonderful £17,164 away with our next generation to continue their farming journeys. King of the ring this year was last year’s runner up, twenty-three-year-old Elliot Grieves of Oakdene, Whinney Hill when his thumping Beef Shorthorn steer gained a brilliant £710 in value from his purchase back at the end of October last year. Tied at the top of the heifers gaining £590 profits were the in-form Elliot Grieves and also young Miss Ava Wilson, Throstlenest Farm, Lanchester with her reserve champion offering. Other excellent performances and gaining over £500 came from Mindi Dawson, George Wearmouth, Robert McAneney, Abi Hill and last but by no means least a special mention must go to two outstanding young ladies; Ponteland based Emma Watson and Bolam resident Imogen Davies who both joined Elliot Grieves with over a £500 gross gain with both of their overwintered cattle.

Show results as follows:

Overall Champion – Harry Askwith, Low Mown Meadows – Limousin Heifer

Reserve Champion – Ava Wilson, Throstlenest Farm – British Blue Heifer

Showmanship & Presentation:

1st Michael Brannen, Scar Top

2nd Emma Watson, East Thorn Farm

3rd Ava Wilson, Throstlenest Farm

Overall Greatest Profit – Elliot Greaves, Oakdene – Beef Shorthorn £710

Steers Greatest Profit
1st – Elliot Greaves, Oakdene – Beef Shorthorn £710

2nd – Mindi Dawson, Blue House – British Blue £570

3rd – George Wearmouth, Rosehill – Limousin £560

Heifers Greatest Profit
Tied 1st – Ava Wilson, Throstlenest Farm – British Blue £590
Tied 1st – Elliot Grieves, Oakdene – Limousin £590

2nd – Imogen Davies, Lough House – Limousin £550

Tied 3rd – Imogen Davies, Lough House – Limousin £530
Tied 3rd – Emma Watson, East Thorn Farm – Limousin £530

Class 1 Steers – Age 25-28 Years

1st Georgina Laws, High Village Farm – Limousin

2nd Tom Barley, Alston House – Limousin

3rd Tom Barley. Alston House

Class 2 Steers – Age 13-24 Years

1st Michael Brannen, Scar Top – Charolais

2nd Jake Farrington, Whitelass Close – British Blue

3rd Abi Hill, Knavesmire – British Blue

4th Jake Farrington, Whitelass Close – Charolais

Class 3 Steers – Age 8-12 Years

1st Ted Rooke, Rye House – British Blue

2nd Mindi Dawson, Blue House – British Blue

3rd Mindi Dawson, Blue House – Limousin

4th Ted Rooke, Rye House – British Blue

Class 4 Heifers Age 27-29 Years

1st Emma Watson, East Thorn Farm – Limousin

2nd Emma Watson, East Thorn Farm – Limousin

3rd James Burns, Coquet Close – Limousin

4th Georgina Laws, High Village Farm – Limousin

Class 5 Heifers – Age 25-26 Years

1st Robert McAneney, Scow Hall – Limousin

2nd Robert McAneney, Scow Hall – Limousin

3rd Nicola Terry, Scow Hall – Limousin

4th Nicola Terry, scow Hall – Limousin

Class 6 Heifers – Age 19-23 Years

1st Harry Askwith, Low Mown Meadows – Limousin

2nd Harry Askwith, Low Mown Meadows – Limousin

3rd Elliott Grieves, Oakdene – Limousin

Class 7 Heifers – Age 11-16 Years

1st Michael Brannen, Scar Top – Limousin

2nd Jack Sewell, Knavesmire – British Blue

3rd Imogen Davies, Lough House – Limousin

4th Imogen Davies, Lough House – Limousin

Class 8 Heifers – Age 8-10 Years

1st Ava Wilson, Throstlenest – British Blue

2nd Thomas Foster Birch Bush – Limousin

3rd Flynn Winspear, Overton – Limousin

4th Flynn Winspear, Overton – Limousin


Sale of Store Cattle – An excellent trade throughout, quality boosted by the aforementioned junior farmers saw the brilliant bullocks average £1283 and the hot heifers £1124. A superb 18-month-old British Blue heifer from N Wilson, Hill House Farm led the way when she sold for £1740, behind her two crackers from Imogen Davies, Lough House sold for £1720 and £1700 with the top five heifers completed by Ava Wilson (£1600) and Jack Sewell (£1570). Top of the steers at £1690 was an excellent 15-month-old Limousin from regular sellers J S Foster & Son, West End Farm with others over £1600 coming twice from G W & L Marsay and also junior farmers Mindi Dawson and Joe Teasdale. A handful of young bulls early in the sale from C N Whitaker, Low House Farm topped at £1080 for a one-year-old British Blue.

Store Bulls- £1080 £1040 x2 £1010 x2 £1000 CN Whitaker.

Store Steers- £1690 £1510 JS Foster & Son. £1670 £1630 £1560 GW&L Marsay. £1630 £1590 Mindii Dawson. £1620 £1300 JD Teasdale. £1595 £1590 AE Barker. £1560 AG Laws. £1560 Elliot Grieves. £1540 Tom Barley. £1515 T Barker. £1500 Michael Brannen. £1500 £1470 Ted Rooke. £1480 George Wearmouth. £1445 x2 GW&M Singleton & Sons. £1370 x2 William Swinbank. £1370 £1345 Jake Farrington. £1350 Tom Barley. £1345 Abi Hill. £1160 £1110 £960 WJ Love. £1125 £1110 Northfield Farms. £1040 N Wilson.

Store Heifers- £1740 N Wilson. £1720 £1700 Imogen Davies. £1600 Ava Wilson. £1570 Jack Sewell. £1560 Michael Brannen. £1550 £1440 Emma Watson. £1510 £1310 £1290 £1230 RL Walker. £1500 £1420 Harry Askwith. £1500 £1390 C Moffett. £1490 Elliot Grieves. £1470 T Barker. £1470 £1190 R McAnency. £1430 £1320 Edward Swinbank. £1400 Thomas Foster. £1380 AG Laws. £1380 George Wearmouth. £1360 £1310 GW&M Singleton & Sons. £1310 Katie Wall. £1300 £1150 N Terry. £1270 £1210 JS Foster & Son. £1200 James Burns. £1180 x2 PT Stephenson & Son. £1180 A Tallentire.

Cast Cattle/OTM – The cow trade rumbles along very nicely, less numbers due to the Bank Holiday and no real superstars at the top end mattered little as the sale averaged 191ppk and £1270 per head which included one third dairy cows and only eight continentals. Top per kilo at 266 pence was a tidy Limousin OTM heifer from G Dixon, Low Scargill; seven other OTM’s followed between 214ppk and 242ppk including two Freisian heifers from Little Newsham Farms and A R & C Booth. Top of the gross values (aside from the bulls) this week was a British Blue OTM from J E Grieves, Brackstone House, Whinney Hill reaching £1716, leading the dairy cows was a marvellous Montbeliarde from J E Holiday & Son, Woodland House Farm at £1522 with Friesians to £1473 from Little Newsham Farms.  On to the two bulls, a super Stabiliser from Skelton Farming, Stanghow sold for 176ppk and £1856 whilst a smart Aberdeen Angus from E A & N Thompson & Son, Ormside sold for 226ppk and £1830.

Cast Cows- Top prices PPK 266 234 GS Dixon. 242 G Calvert & Sons. 228 220 JE Grieves. 218 190 176 162 Little Newsham Farms. 216 AR&C Booth. 214 212 202 200 198 x2 196 188 Skelton Farming LTD. 200 Duell Partners. 196 R&W Todd. 192 178 JT&M Atkinson. 192 JE Holliday & Son. 190 Gerard Te-Lintelo. 182 N Wilson. 180 178 176 JA&B Nappey.

Lead Grossing Cast Cows- £1716 £1161 JE Grieves. £1543 G Calvert & Sons. £1542 Gerard Te-Lintelo. £1522 JE Holliday & Son. £1490 £1298 GS Dixon. £1490 £1466 £1460 £1147 £1143 £1053 £1035 Skelton Farming LTD. £1473 £1448 £1430 £1187 £1009 Little Newsham Farms. £1450 £1254 £1168 JA&B Nappey. £1310 N Wilson. £1294 JT&M Atkinson. £1172 £1033 AR&C Booth. £1162 R&W Todd.

Cast Bulls- Top prices PPK 226 EA&N Thompson & Son. 176 Skelton Farming LTD.

Lead Grossing Cast Bulls- £1856 Skelton Farming LTD. £1830 EA&N Thompson & Son.

Ewes & Lambs – A fast start to the ewe and lamb season as the sale averaged a remarkable £99.55 per life, anything with strength or shape proved to be an absolute humdinger of a trade. Top of the day at £312 per family was twice achieved by R A Patterson & Son, White House Farm as tremendous Texels (4 with 7 & 5 with 9) led the way for the Capheaton based firm. Two vendors sold pens of continental ewes at £300 when 6 with 12 lambs from W Wearmouth & Son, Rose Hill Farm matched a price set just moments before by J E Stobbs & Son, Killerby Hall showing 12 with 23. Cheviot ewes with strong Texel crossed twins from C J & J M Simpson, Rookery Hill topped at £295 and were followed by our top price per life a stunning Beltex ewe with a single lamb from Francesca Stobbs, Killerby Hall saw the family realise £270.

Ewes with lambs at foot- £312 x2 £240 RA Patterson & Son. £300 £248 £215 W Wearmouth & Son. £300 £245 JE Stobbs & Son. £295 £208 CJ&JM Simpson. £270 F Stobbs. £250 PA Evans. £235 J Burbury.

Store Hoggs – Newfound levels as the heroic hogg trade just keeps on climbing. Naturally the quality is reducing but that seems to matter little as all shapes and sizes remain incredibly well sold. Top of the day were a wonderful quartet of Texel hoggs from K O Stones, Nun Cote Nook at £187. Four more followed from the same good home at £174 ahead of a pair from P J & A J Browell at £171. See below some remarkable returns with all breeds selling to unprecedented levels for the time of year.

Store Hoggs-

Texel- £187 £174 £132 £128 KO Stones. £162 £99 JJ Horn. £159 N Gill. £113 Colne Valley Beef.

Continental- £171 PJ&AJ Browell. £157 £94 Colne Valley Beef. £128 £110 D&J Coulson. £109 £103 N Gill. £98 £96 GH&RG Stobbs. £86 TB Walton.

Beltex- £162 D&J Coulson.

Suffolk- £159 P&AR Jopling. £106 D&J Coulson.

Cheviot- £153 £68 KO Stones. £148 £104 N Gill.

Black Faced- £128 MW Cook & Son.

Blue Faced Leicester- £106 MW Cook & Son.

Jacob- £114 Colne Valley Beef.

Herdwick- £78 N Gill.

Swale- £63 N Gill.

Feeding Ewes- £134 J Atkinson. £103 £60 PA Evans. £99 £42 GH&RG Stobbs. £95 S Fenwick. £91 P&AR Jopling.  90 Colne Valley Beef. £84 £75 £72 D Clarke. £64 S Dodsworth.