Swires family take principal Craven Dairy Auction honours Commercial dairy farmers, the Swires family from Stainburn, midway between Harrogate and Otley, swept the board with a championship and reserve championship double at the opening March Craven Dairy Auction show and sale at Skipton Auction Mart. (Mon, March 13) Father and son, Tony and James Swires, of Town End Farm, where they milk 180 Holstein Friesian cows, first stepped up with the first prize newly calven heifer, which was then tapped out as overall champion by show judge Colin Whitelock, of Gargrave

A daughter of their former stock bull, Miresdale Prefect, acquired from Northallerton’s Geoff Spence, the victor, 14 days calved and giving 27litres, went on to sell for a sale-topping £2,020 to Mark Goodall, of Tong, Bradford.

The Swires were also responsible for the first prize newly calven cow and reserve champion, a 33 litre second calver by the renowned Genus dairy bull, Picston Shottle, which made £1,320 on joining Richard Webster in Leeming.

The family capped a good day when also sending out the second prize heifer, an 11 days calved 30 litre daughter of the Cogent sire, Admiral, which became another Mark Goodall buy at £1,420.

The third prize heifer from Carlisle’s Wilson Stewart sold for £1,380, again to Richard Webster, while the second prize cow from Calderdale’s John Midgeley, of Ludendenfoot, made £1,150 to Wick Williams, of Nantwich.

With 13 head offered for sale, both first and second rate heifers got away well, with some average goods bid fiercely for and many reaching £1,300 to £1,400. Newly calven heifers averaged £1,720 and cows £1,320. Co-sponsors were National Milk Records and famers buying group, Woldmarsh,

The same day’s weekly rearing calf sale attracted 79 head and saw young continental-bred calves achieve the best of the trade when averaging £325.48 per head overall, peaking at £410 twice for a brace of British Blue-cross bull calves from regular vendor and top price achiever Fred Houseman, of Church Farm Enterprises in Burton Leonard.

Johnny Moon, of Wigglesworth, topped the heifers at £370 with another Blue-cross. Native calves were out in good numbers, with 11 young Hereford bull calves averaging £200 and topping at £220 for an offering from John and Rob Marshall, of Dacre. Aberdeen Angus averaged £208 and peaked at £245 for a bull calf, again from Mr Moon. The overall native average was £195.48.

Chris Watson, of Horton-in-Craven, was on the end of a good trade for his Flekvieh-cross calves, with 10 averaging £228 and topping at £260. The same vendor also headed the Limousin-cross bull calf prices at £240.

Black and whites peaked at £170 from a bull calf from Nick and Emma Parker, of Silsden, with a section average of £60.