Millside Blue Texels at
NSA Scotsheep 2012
Stock from the Millside Flock of Blue Texels were displayed on the Blue Texel Society stand at NSA Scotsheep 2012 held recently at The Morrisons Farm at Dumfries House, Cumnock, Ayrshire. There was a record crowd of over 8000 people who, despite the wet weather, witnessed a tremendous display of many breeds of sheep and a vast array of trade stands with products, equipment and machinery of interest to sheep farmers and others.
Both Jennifer and myself were delighted to be members of the organising committee at this biennial National Sheep Event, which on this occasion was held within 10 miles of our home at Millside.
Dumfries House is of distinctive architectural importance as it was designed by Robert Adam in the middle of the 18 th century and its unique collection of Chippendale furniture is unrivalled. It was saved for the nation in 2007 by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, in his capacity as the Great Steward of Scotland. This beautiful house adjoins the 960 acre farm now run as a joint commercial venture by the Dumfries House Trust and Morrisons, one of the UK 's leading supermarkets.
HRH Prince Charles officially opened Scotsheep and afterwards toured the farm, meeting and talking to many people from all aspects of the farming industry. His great interest in Wool, and as instigator and Patron of the Campaign for Wool meant he spent plenty time at the ‘Wool Centre' speaking to representatives of the British Wool Marketing Board before seeing the display and demonstrations of feltmaking and spinning. Jennifer was honoured to meet HRH Prince Charles, and talk him through the diversity of processes on show highlighting different uses of wool from different breeds of sheep and in turn introduce him to all the ladies involved.
Needless to say Millside Blue Texel wool (and Millside Lleyn wool) featured and was handled by him!
For more details of this aspect of Scotsheep see Jennifer's separate report.
There was a lot of interest in the Blue Texel Sheep on the breed stand.
On display were 3 Ram Lambs, full E.T. brothers and also full brothers to ‘Millside Dave' – sold at NSA Builth Wells Ram Sale 2009 and subsequently Champion Blue Texel and Reserve Continental Interbreed Champion at the Royal Welsh Show 2010.
These ram lambs along with other males and females will be offered for sale at the various Society Sales in the autumn or privately.
Also on display were 3 home bred pure Blue Texel Shearling Gimmers which were again much admired.
However the cross sheep on the stand proved of great interest to the commercial sheep farmer. A Lleyn x Ewe with Twins sired by a Blue Texel were much talked about and proved that the Blue Texel can produce long tight skinned lambs with good conformation ideal for the butcher or as possible replacements for the commercial sheep farmer.
In addition were a pen of 3 Cross Shearling Gimmers sired by the Blue Texel Ram and out of a Lleyn Ewe, Rouge Ewe and Texel Ewe respectively. These gimmers had grown well and were lengthy, good gigoted sheep ideal for producing lambs suitable for fatstock or carcase shows.
Quite a number of farmers reported how pleased they are having used a Blue Texel Ram for crossing, and there were a lot of enquiries about where we would be selling sheep this year, either registered Blue Texels, or both males and females for the commercial sheep farmer.
Many thanks to Arfon Hughes from the Garn Flock in Wales for his help in erecting the stand and also for his help in promoting the Blue Texel by speaking to farmers on the stand and to Ewan McIntyre (Fairnbank Flock) who also assisted on the day.
We were proud of the sheep from our flock and we must also thank William Linton who helped prepare the sheep for the event.
We welcome any enquiries about our Blue Texel (or Lleyn Sheep) - please do not hesitate to contact us by telephone or e-mail.
If we're available we'll be pleased to speak to you or arrange to show you our flock.
If we're not available – keep trying!!