We have had some exciting news since my last entry, we participated in the genetic blood testing this year and have recently received the results. We sampled 6 rams and 3 were found to be homozygotes (WW) and therefore will not sire coloured lambs. One of the WW Rams, "Hawthorns U Bet" is entered into the RFBS Show & Sale held at Ludlow on 29th August.
We have had an absolutely brilliant weekend down in Malvern at The Royal Three Counties Show. On Saturday, we gained the championship with our shearling ewe, Hawthorns U5 and again on Sunday, which is the National Rare Breeds Day, she was champion again. We are extremely proud of her and the rest of our team. We had 3 first places and 3 third places on Saturday and 4 first places, 1 second place and 1 third place on Sunday. Our shearling ram, Hawthorns Union Jack and U5 were selected by our judge, Russell Howell to represent our breed in the Interbreed Pairs competition were they achieved Reserve Champions in the Other Breed Section.
This posting is well overdue!!! We had a brilliant show season last year culminating in winning the Percy Wear Points Trophy, which was awarded to us at The Ryeland Flock Book Society Show & Sale at Ludlow.
It was a huge honour to win this trophy and we are extremely proud. We thought our day could not get any better but we were wrong! We then went on to achieve a breed record price of 2,000 guineas with our yearling ram Hawthorns Talisman. It was a day we will never forget, made so much better by the congratulations of our Ryeland friends.
The show season started at The Royal Welsh Spring Festival in May, our aged ram Hawthorns Phineas gained a first place in his class, our two yearling rams, Hawthorns Tuilagi and Hawthorns Talisman were 1st and 2nd in their class. Our yearling ewe Hawthorns Tara was 2nd in her class. Phineas went on to become Champion with Tuilagi in reserve. Our next stop was The Royal Three Counties, unfortunately, it clashed with our local show, The Cumberland County, but luckily our friends the Bewley family and in particular Charlotte saved the day and exhibited our sheep, gaining Champion with Hawthorns Talisman. Then onto The Great Yorkshire were Tuilagi was made champion followed by trips to The Royal Welsh, Dumfries and another championship for Phineas, gained at Anglesey County Show.
A fabulous year for the Hawthorns Flock.
The Show Season of 2013 has been our best ever and most travelled. We started earlier than usual in May with the Royal Welsh Spring Festival. (Judged by William Laurie) It is the first time we have exhibited there and came home with the Breed Championship. We had a 1st place in the Aged Ram Class, 4th in the Shearling Ram Class and 1st and 2nd in the Shearling Ewe Class with our homebred Shearling Ewe "Hawthorns Simone" (S3) taking the Championship.
Our next show saw us in home territory enjoying the sunshine at The Cumberland County Show (Judged by Jeanie Scott). The classes were very well supported this year and hopefully next year we can have separate classes for Aged and Shearling Rams. Our lambs were the stars here as Hawthorns Tuilagi and Hawthorns Tara both won their classes with Hawthorns Tuilagi taking the Reserve Championship.
Next stop, Royal Three Counties Show at Malvern which held The National Ryeland Show, (Judged by Susan Bryden) again Tuilagi and Tara shone with Tuilagi winning the Ram Lamb Class and Tara second in the Ewe Lamb Class. They then went onto the win Best Pair of Lambs.
We have been chasing the Championship at The Great Yorkshire Show (Judged by Laura Howell) for many years having been Reserve on three occasions. This year was to be a dream come true! We achieved our best ever results at any show with wins in the Aged Ram Class (Hawthorns Phineas - P13), Shearling Ram Class (Hawthorns Shadrack - S15), Breeding Ewe Class (Hawthorns Phoebe - P3) Shearling Ewe (Hawthorns Saffron - S6) Ewe Lamb (Hawthorns Tara - T2). We had a 2nd place in the Ram Lamb Class (Hawthorns Tuilagi - T25) and third place in the Group of Three (Hawthorns Phineas, Phoebe and Saffron). We then went on to win Champion Female (Hawthorns Saffron), Reserve Champion Female (Hawthorns Tara), Champion Male (Hawthorns Phineas) and Reserve Champion Male (Hawthorns Shadrack). Hawthorns Phineas taking the Championship with Hawthorns Saffron Reserve.
Last year we went down to Builth Wells on a recky, with the Royal Welsh Show in our sights. We thoroughly enjoyed the experience and decided that we would like to exhibit there. After such an amazing experience at GYS I thought that things could not get any better!!! How wrong - I cannot find the words to express how fantastic the Royal Welsh Show is. It is quite simply the best! We were so proud to be even exhibiting there and to come away with the Championship was unbelieveable!! (Judged by Brenda Wear)Hawthorns Phineas was 1st in the Aged Ram Class, going on to become Best Male Exhibit. We achieved a 4th place in the Shearling Ram Class, Ram Lamb Class and Breeding Ewe Class and a 1st place in the Shearling Ewe Class with Hawthorns Simone. The welsh air must suit her very well as she came away with her second Welsh Championship of the year. Our Group of Three consisting of H. Phineas, Simone and Tara won the Best Group of Three Bred by Exhibitor. We were then pulled into the second cut short list in the Interbreed Pairs and Interbreed Lowland Championship. Never in my wildest dreams could I have predicted such a result, I am so proud.............and then we moved onto the Royal Welsh After Judging Party in the lines (maybe not so proud of myself - what happens in Builth stays in Builth!!!!) We Ryeland Breeders like to Party!!!
As the Show Season of 2013 draws to a close, I reflect on what has been an amazing year. What 2014 holds for the Hawthorns Flock I am still unsure but one thing I am 100% certain of is that we, the members of the Ryeland Flock Book Society have the very best breed of sheep and the very best breeders in the whole universe.
Arrived home early from a very wet Great Yorkshire Show, the organisers made the decision to cancel the show after one day as the public carparks were water logged. The judging of the Ryelands went ahead on Tuesday and we had a very good day, John Read was our judge and the Hawthorns Flock had a 2nd place in the Shearling Ram Class with Hawthorns Phineas, 1st place in the Breeding Ewe Class with Nettlesyke Lulu, 1st Place in the Shearling Ewe Class with Hawthorns Poppy, 1st Place in the Ewe Lamb Class with Hawthorns Simone, 1st Place Group of Three with Hawthorns Phineas and Poppy and Nettlesyke Lulu. Hawthorns Poppy was Female Champion and Reserve Champion overall, while Hawthorns Simone was Reserve Female Champion. Congratulation to Susan Bryden and Broomwell Piper on winning the championship.
We have just returned from an extremely wet Royal Highland Show. We have had a very successful visit with Reserve Breed Champion with our Shearling Ewe Hawthorns Poppy, we retained The Reivesley Salver for the Best Lamb which was between Hawthorns Strongbow and Hawthorns Simone, with Strongbow the winner, Best Group of Three with Hawthorns Poppy, Strongbow and Simone. Our Shearling Ram Hawthorns Phineas was Reserve Male Champion. Congratulations to Pat Maddock with her Shearling Ram on taking the Breed Championship
We have had a very successful ten days, following on from a Championship at the Cumberland Show with our 2sh Ram, "Dolwen Nimble", we are absolutely delighted to report that we had Breed Champion at the Three Counties National Ryeland Show with our homebred sh ewe "Hawthorns Poppy" sired by "Bryn Caffo Lordyn" out of "Hawthorns Gillean". The next day at Three Counties is Rare Breed Day and we achieved Reserve Champion with our homebred Sh Ram "Hawthorns Phineas" sired by Ruslin Zebedee and out of a Glenbryn ewe. Three Counties is a fantastic show, I can thoroughly recommend to all and very worth while the 5 hour journey.
All our show sheep are now washed and had their first trim. Our first show is Cumberland County on Saturday, followed by Three Counties and Royal Highland. Fingers crossed for a lovely, sunny day on Saturday.
We have been getting ready for the show season this weekend, our three possible show breeding ewes have been sheared and show lambs chosen. Cumberland Show will be our first show this year and is only 4 weeks away!!!