Thainstone Show and Sale set to see prominent entries

Last year's overall champion Ally Fraser and his 13-month-old Limousin cross heifer with the show sponsor representative from Ledingham Chalmers Solicitors LLP
Last year's overall champion Ally Fraser and his 13-month-old Limousin cross heifer with the show sponsor representative from Ledingham Chalmers Solicitors LLP

Young Farmers across the North and North East are busy preparing for the 26th Young Farmers’ Overwintered Cattle Show and Sale next week.

Organised by Aberdeen & Northern Marts and sponsored by Ledingham Chalmers Solicitors LLP, the show and sale provides young farmers between the ages of 14 and 30 with hands-on practice in the art of stockmanship through the tasks of selection, feeding, preparing and parading cattle for shows and sales, all while engaging in friendly competition with peers.

Judged by Louise Allan, Arnsow, Kirkmichael, Maybole, Ayrshire, this year’s event will see 50 entries take part, of which 25 are steers and 25 heifers. The best presented and best paraded prizes will be awarded by Judge Debbie Watt, Oldwhat Mains, New Deer, Turriff.

Each young farmer participating in the competition has purchased their cattle at any of the Aberdeen & Northern Marts’ autumn sales and has reared the livestock throughout the autumn and winter months, in hopes of achieving top show results and strong prices in the sale.

The prize money totals to £2,200 with a wide array of prizes to be awarded, including the prestigious Calladrum cup for the champion overwintered animal alongside a £100 cash prize.

The top-prize animal is determined based on performance in the competition categories – highest feeders’ margin, highest average daily live-weight gain, best presented and paraded animal, and best quality animal.

John Angus, Aberdeen & Northern Marts Head of Livestock, said: “Young farmers events are a very important part of our shows and sales each year. Competitions such as this offer valuable experience in livestock management and the commercial side of livestock rearing to the future generation of farmers, allowing our industry to continue to prosper. This show and sale also presents an ideal opportunity for buyers to purchase good-quality animals ahead of the summer show circuit.

“Recognising the knowledge and talent that our young participants encompass is a priority for us, and we are delighted to see so many strong entries set to take part in this year’s competition.”

Last year’s show and sale saw Ally Fraser claim the overall championship title with his 13-month-old Limousin cross heifer, weighing 484kg and selling for a top sales price of £3,400 to an undisclosed buyer. A tie was declared for the Calladrum cup, which is awarded to the exhibitor with the highest feeders margin, highest average daily live weight gain, best presented and paraded animal, and best quality animal. The cup was awarded to both James MacIver Jnr, Wester Coltfield, Kinloss, Forres and Stuart Ross, Wardhead, Strichen, Fraserburgh for their overall achievements.

This year’s show – broadcast live via www.anmarts.co.uk – will start at 6pm on Thursday, March 22 with the sale taking place at 10am the following day.

The sale on Friday, March 23 will be conducted through our online purchase platform i-bidder.com, permitting potential buyers far and wide to view the live auction and bid with confidence.