DCSIMG

Thousands of people attend Castlewellan Show

Sandra, Molly and Matthew Cochrane with judge Jonathan Redmond. Steven McAuley

Sandra, Molly and Matthew Cochrane with judge Jonathan Redmond. Steven McAuley

Castlewellan Show is billed as one of the largest agricultural events in the province, and this year’s 47th annual show didn’t disappoint.

Slievenaslat Mountain provides a picturesque backdrop for the one-day show, which attracts thousands of exhibitors and spectators from throughout the island of Ireland and further afield.

“It’s been a hive of activity from early morning,” commented show chairperson Michelle McCauley. “Traffic has been heavy on all approach roads into Castlewellan, and people were still arriving at the show well into the afternoon.

“We’ve been very lucky with the weather, and I have no doubt that the success of this year’s show is largely attributed to the publicity we received from Nick Hewer’s Farm Fixer series.

“Our trade stand area is completely sold out, and we are delighted to welcome a number of new gold and silver sponsors.”

While agriculture remains at the core of the show, the action-packed schedule had something for everyone. Popular attractions included scarecrows, a fashion show, live music, vintage tractors, amusements and a dog agility demonstration.

Ladies from the Lisburn branch of Save the Children were serving vintage-style afternoon tea, while a host of other rural pursuits including stick making, threshing, wood turning, and birds of prey were on display.

The NI Stickmakers Club hosted a competition which attracted more than 180 entries, with the best in show prize going to Lawrence Barkey from Armagh, with John Lutton from Dungannon in second place.

The BBC’s Saturday Magazine was broadcasting live, with John Toal chatting to show goers, while celebrity chef Paula McIntyre prepared an array of tasty dishes using local produce.

Competition was strong in the livestock sections with more than 700 sheep taking part in the various classes, which this year included a section for the Vendeen breed originating from France.

Interbreed champion of the show was a shearling ewe from Alastair Gault’s Texel flock at Newtownabbey. Runner-up was a Charollais shearling ewe exhibited by Jim and Cynthia Aiken from Dromara; while a Beltex shearling ewe from David Brown, Banbridge, claimed the second reserve award.

Cattle numbers remained strong, with Scottish judge Jim Goldie awarding the day’s interbreed supreme award to the British Blonde champion Ivaniskey Denise, a five-year-old cow bred and exhibited by the McElroy family – Ivan, Ruth and William, from Dromara. This exceptional young cow has collected numerous prizes in recent weeks, and was described by the judge as an outstanding young cow. “She boasts length, width and excellent conformation, and is rearing a very good calf,” said Mr Goldie.

Runner-up in the interbreed beef line-up, and winner of the Bank of Ireland/NISA junior bull championship, was Ratoary Irishman ET, an eleven-month-old Charolais bull bred by Sean McGovern from Clogher, County Tyrone.

Claiming the second reserve honours was the commercial cattle champion Baby Fanta, a Charolais-bred heifer shown by John Killen, and daughters Shauna and Katrina from Crossgar.

The dairy cattle entries came under the expert eye of German judge Torben Melbaum. Top honours went to Wyndford BD Regiment Appletime Red ET, a second calver from Aubrey Patterson’s Ballycrochan herd at Bangor. “I really like this young cow, she has nice bone, moves well, and has an exceptionally high rear udder,” said the judge.

He awarded the reserve interbreed title to Lomond Damion Ashlyn from the Patton family’s Ards Herd at Newtownards. She calved her third in March, and is currently yielding 53 litres of milk daily.

• For a Full list of results, go to the Farming life website or see Saturday’s Farming life

Slievenaslat Mountain provides a picturesque backdrop for the one-day show, which attracts thousands of exhibitors and spectators from throughout the island of Ireland and further afield.

“It’s been a hive of activity from early morning,” commented show chairperson Michelle McCauley. “Traffic has been heavy on all approach roads into Castlewellan, and people were still arriving at the show well into the afternoon.

“We’ve been very lucky with the weather, and I have no doubt that the success of this year’s show is largely attributed to the publicity we received from Nick Hewer’s Farm Fixer series.

“Our trade stand area is completely sold out, and we are delighted to welcome a number of new gold and silver sponsors.”

While agriculture remains at the core of the show, the action-packed schedule had something for everyone. Popular attractions included scarecrows, a fashion show, live music, vintage tractors, amusements and a dog agility demonstration.

Ladies from the Lisburn branch of Save the Children were serving vintage-style afternoon tea, while a other rural pursuits included stick making, threshing, wood turning. Birds of prey were on display.

The NI Stickmakers Club hosted a competition which attracted more than 180 entries, with the best in show prize going to Lawrence Barkey from Armagh, with John Lutton from Dungannon in second place.

The BBC’s Saturday Magazine was broadcasting live, with John Toal chatting to show goers, while celebrity chef Paula McIntyre prepared an array of tasty dishes using local produce.

Competition was strong in the livestock sections with more than 700 sheep taking part in the various classes, which this year included a section for the Vendeen breed originating from France.

Interbreed champion of the show was a shearling ewe from Alastair Gault’s Texel flock at Newtownabbey. Runner-up was a Charollais shearling ewe exhibited by Jim and Cynthia Aiken from Dromara; while a Beltex shearling ewe from David Brown, Banbridge, claimed the second reserve award.

Cattle numbers remained strong, with Scottish judge Jim Goldie awarding the day’s interbreed supreme award to the British Blonde champion Ivaniskey Denise, a five-year-old cow bred and exhibited by the McElroy family – Ivan, Ruth and William, from Dromara. This exceptional young cow has collected numerous prizes in recent weeks, and was described by the judge as an outstanding young cow. “She boasts length, width and excellent conformation, and is rearing a very good calf,” said Mr Goldie.

Runner-up in the interbreed beef line-up, and winner of the Bank of Ireland/NISA junior bull championship, was Ratoary Irishman ET, an eleven-month-old Charolais bull bred by Sean McGovern from Clogher, County Tyrone.

 

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