Wednesday 12 July 2023

Finding the peak of the trade in the second annual Grass Masters online auction was the May 2021-born bull Albany Sailor from the Cook family, Cambridge, selling for £3,000 to Oliver Stanley, Bath. Having claimed breed championships at both the Shropshire County and Royal Three Counties shows this year, this bull finishes the season with a move to the organic and Pasture For Life certified Lilliput Farm. A well-established traditional grazing enterprise, there are plans afoot for an on-site farmhouse kitchen with dry-ageing facility to market their finished cattle and sheep which graze the Cotswold Edge.

Albany Sailor from the Cook family sold for £3,000

Knocked down at £2,550 was another two-year-old bull, Carpenters Brigadier from Helen MacLeod, Malvern, Worcestershire. One of only a few contemporary cattle sired by AI from the 1962-born MMB bull Ffostil Brigadier, this June 2021-born bull sold to the Eutierria prefix of Sarah Cowle, Aylesbury.

Carpenters Brigadier from Helen MacLeod sold for £2,550 

Leading the female trade was another from FW Cook and son, the in-calf 2018-born cow Albany Oyster Girl 20th which sold to P and E Lynn, Nottinghamshire for £2,225. Representing a particularly rare female line of which only 10 were identified in 2023 census, this cow was selected by the Lynn family to expand the existing base of bloodlines within their growing Hockerwood herd.

Albany Oyster Girl 20th from FW Cook and son sold for £2,225

Another standout female line which breeders had the chance to pick up in this year’s online event, emanating from the original Free Town C family, came in the form of the 2019-born in-calf cow Carpenters Caroline, bred and sold by Helen MacLeod for £2,000 to repeat purchasers Courteenhall Estate, based near Northampton, who also secured in-calf heifer Carpenters Gaymaid 2nd from the same vendor for £1,500.

Carpenters Caroline from H MacLeod sold for £2,000

New breeder Harry Wreathall, Bury St Edmunds, purchased two 2017-born cows, both sired by Boresisle Lawrence. Gavelock Sybilla with her steer calf at foot from Carolyn Redmayne made £1,600, and in-calf Albany Lisbon from FW Cook and son sold for £1,525.

Two further lots from vendor Helen MacLeod both sold into Wales, with the yearling bull Carpenters Monroe knocked down at £1,500 to Ben Jones, Abergavenny, Monmouthshire and maiden heifer Carpenters Curly 19th to Rob Turner, Llanymynech, Powys for £1,200.

The final lot in the auction was a pair of embryos offered for sale by P and E Lynn. Sired by Margarita Sebastian and from the family’s home-bred and show-winning donor dam Hockerwood Lucy, they were purchased for £250 per embryo by James Reed of ND Dibben Farms, Salisbury.

Sales manager: Agri Marketing/Traditional Hereford Breeders’ Club

Averages: 3 bulls, £2,350; 4 in-calf females, £1,812.50; 1 cow and calf, £1,600; 1 maiden heifer, £1,200; 2 embryos, £250

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