East of England Smithfield Festival 2014

This year's East of England Smithfield Festival featuring the famous Smithfield primestock championships as well as a wide range of other related activities and events will take place at the East of England Showground, Peterborough, on Thursday 4th and Friday 5th December.

For all show information please contact the event organiser, Kerry Buttriss by emailing kbuttriss@eastofengland.org.uk

December 2013: Smithfield champions destined for Harrods of Knightsbridge

This year's East of England Smithfield Festival, Peterborough, had it all, a top class show of prime cattle and sheep, top quality judges and buyers prepared to dig deep to secure the very best beef and lamb for their customers' Christmas counters.

And while the halycon days of London may be a distant memory for many Smithfield showgoers, there was an extra touch of London glamour added to this year's show with both the supreme champion beast and the champion lambs destined to grace the food hall of leading Knightsbridge department store, Harrods.

Commenting on the event's success show chairman Charles Horrell said it had once again provided a fitting finale to the winter primestock season. "This year's East of England Smithfield Festival has been a resounding success, with top quality stock forward in every section and an exceptional set of judges presiding over the classes throughout.

"The atmosphere and buzz around the event has been great and we look forwards to welcoming exhibitors and visitors back to Peterborough in 2014 for an even bigger and better event."

Lifting the overall cattle championship and fufilling a boyhood dream was Castle Douglas-based exhibitor and freelance stockman Drew Hyslop  and his partner Katie Davidson with their Charolais cross heifer, Bang Tidy.

This heifer, sired by Glenrock Eiger, was bought privately from Hugh and Lynne Dunlop, Holehouse, Ochiltree, making it the fourth Holehouse-bred beast to have collected the Smithfield championship.

Tipping the scales at 602kg Bang Tidy came through as crossbred Continental heifer champion and then overall heifer champion, under judge Archie MacGregor, Allanfauld, Kilsyth,  before being tapped out as the show's supreme champion beast.

Bred from a Limousin cross dam this heifer had been a first prize winner at the Scottish Winter Fair.

Commenting on his champion Mr MacGregor said she was an ultimate show beast and a more than worthy Smithfield winner. "She handles exceptionally well, has a great loin and length to her and has that all important added sparkle needed in the showring. She was without question the best beast here today."

In the traditional show auction conducted by Newark Livestock Market Bang Tidy collected the highest price of the day when selling for 8000 to William and Robert Woodward of Bowood Yorkshire Lamb buying on behalf of Harrods.

It was another heifer which came through to collect the reserve overall championship too, this time a purebred Limousin heifer from the Harryman family, Keswick, Cumbria.

The Harryman's reserve heifer champion and reserve overall winner was Keskadale Gamel, a June 2011-born heifer by Sarkley Volvo and weighing 724kg. Gamel won the purebred heifer championship and overall purebred title before going on to collect the reserve supreme championship and the King's Cup for the best homebred beast at the show.

And in a rare twist Gamel became the first beast to win the King's Cup for the second year in succession, having been homebred champion at last year's show too. Prior to her Smithfield return she had taken a red ticket at Agri-Expo, Carlisle, and stood second at the English Winter Fair as well winning numerous championships throughout the summer. She later sold at 3000 and heads to Scotland for breeding.

Taking the show's overall steer championship for a record sixth year on the trot were the Alford family, Mike, Melanie and Charlotte, with their Limousin cross steer Harlem Shake. This one was bred by O J Kendall,  and was bought from the Leyburn Spring Spectacular earlier in the year.

Sired by Cawfields Dazzler, Harlem Shake was steer champion at the Royal Welsh Show in the summer, as well as the Great Yorkshire and Royal Highland Show and has been a first prize winner on the winter circuit as well as claiming the steer championship and reserve overall at the Scottish Winter Fair last week.

Another long-time Smithfield supporter then collected the reserve steer championship when Sennybridge-based Elfed Williams' steer Dynamite Dougie scooped these honours.

Bred by Wilson Peters and bought at the Caledonian Marts Calf Sale in September for 4500, Dougie is a son of Normande Adventurer and is out of a Limousin cross dam.  He was reserve overall champion at last week's Royal Welsh Winter Fair.

Reserve crossbred Continental heifer championship honours fell to Cumnock's Ian Lammie. Mr Lammie's winner was the winner of the heavy weight British Blue sired heifer class Sweet Cheeks, a 698kg entry bred by Andy Woodburn.

Taking the reserve overall purebred title was Tim and Kitty Bodily’s reserve continental champion Llanymynach Hiccup. This home bred British Blue heifer is by Dartanjan and the only heifer out of Black and Blue Cleopatra. She weighed 602kg on show day.

Leading the way in the Native purebred classes was Mouswald-based Aberdeen-Angus breeder Matt Currie with his Angus steer Base Jumper. This 712kg Catrionas MacAllan son stood Aberdeen-Angus champion at the Scottish Winter Fair.

Standing reserve to him was the Philip Claridge with his South Devon heifer Knowlhill Sally 21. She is by Knowlhill Duke and weighed 614kg on her first outing and is from a herd of 240 cows including 150 South Devons.

Standing top of the line in the Baby Beef championships was John Smith-Jackson, Haltwhistle, Northumberland, with his home bred British Blue cross heifer calf, She’s a Diamond. Sired by Heatherview Copper and out of a Limousin cross cow, this one weighed 362kg and was champion at Agri-Expo at the beginning of November.

Reserve overall Baby Beef championship honours fell to Alistair and Elizabeth Vance, Newton Stewart, with their Limousin cross heifer Bonnie Betty.

This May born heifer is by Wilodge Azure and was a winner at Colmonell and Wigtown Shows and was reserve Baby Beef winner at Agri-Expo, Carlisle, last month.

Standing top of the Native Baby Beef classes were Jason and Sarah Wareham with their Galloway-sired steer calf Cheeky Vimto. Homebred, this one is by Ballavair Black Jack who was purchased at Castle Douglas and is out of a British Blue x Limousin dam. Currently weighing 310kg, he has picked up three seconds this back end as well as the reserve champion steer calf at Birmingham last month.

Galloway cattle continued their reign in this championship with Tim and Kitty Bodily standing reserve to the Wareham’s with Foxhillfarm Super Bonzo, by Quartz of Kilsnstown. Purchased on his dam at the Alford family’s dispersal of their Galloway herd in Brecon, this one weighs 375kg and was steer calf champion at the Welsh Winter Fair last week.

In the show's beef ribs competition the winner was Robert Needham, Louth. Mr Needham's winning ribs came from a British Blue cross Lincoln Red heifer, born in March 2012.

The reserve title was awarded to Michael Read, Horncastle with these ribs coming from a Limousin cross steer, weighing 324.2kg.


In the sheep section it was a pair of Beltex cross lambs from Herefordshire-based producer Robin Slade which collected the overall championship.

Mr Slade was winning his first live championship at Smithfield and achieved a rare triple at the event, taking the carcass title and reserve carcass championship too, this time with Dutch Texel sired lambs from his Weekfield flock.

The champions, a pair of homebred ewe lambs came through as the overall Continental champions under judge Stuart Clatworthy, Somerset.  They tipped the scales at 91kg and were described by Mr Clatworthy as more than deserving champions, being an evenly matched pair of lambs with exceptional tops, loins and ends. “Throughout the show the top end of every class has been outstanding, it's a credit to all the exhibitors to have such a strong selection of lambs to pick from.”

These lambs are also destined for Harrods having been bought by the Woodward family for a new Smithfield record price of 5100 apiece after a frenetic bidding battle.

Mr Slade's carcass champion a homebred Dutch Texel, killed out at 22kg achieving an E3L classification. Sired by a homebred tup from the Weekfield flock, this lamb weighed 38kg alive. A very similar pure-bred Dutch Texel gained his reserve card which again graded at E3L and weighed 22.5kg.

Taking the reserve Continental and reserve overall championship spot were a pair of Blue Texel cross lambs from David and Linda Wadland, Daventry. This pair, by a Whatmore sire bred by Steve and Sara Gibbons weighed in at 79kg the pair and it was a close run thing for the championship, said Mr Clatworthy. These lambs sold at 380/head under the gavel of Newark sheep auctioneer James Sealy.

The overall Native championship once again went the way of Melrose's Malcolm Stewart, with Mr Stewart notching up another Native championship at  the event with Suffolk sired lambs.

Mr Stewart's champions are by a homebred tup from his Sandyknowe flock and out of homebred Beltex cross ewes. They emerged from a strong line-up to take the Native title, including another pair of Suffolks from Mr Stewart, the winners of the untrimmed Suffolk cross class.

Reserve in the overall native championship went to a pair of Southdown x Beltex cross lambs from Jonathan and Chrissie Long, Kent. In the Continental purebred championship the winners were a pair of Texels from David and Linda Wadland, with a pair of Dutch Texels from Robin Slade standing reserve.

The Native purebred title also fell to the Long family, with a pair of purebred Southdown whether lambs with a pair of South Country Cheviots from Stephen Cobbald taking the reserve title here.

Calf Shows

The show also hosted a number of pedigree calf shows and Alloa-based Richard, Carol and Jamie Rettie scooped top honours here when their Aberdeen-Angus heifer calf Retties Lady Ruth N228, won the overall interbreed championship. This heifer came to Peterborough on an impressive run at the winter calf shows and was pick of the draw at the recent pure calf show of Angus cattle at the Scottish Winter Fair.

She is by Rawburn Elysium F547, this one is out of Wall Lady Ruth E397 who was purchased at the Wall dispersal sale.

Standing reserve interbreed champion and again fresh from a reserve championship win at Edinburgh were Mike, Melanie and Charlotte Alford with Foxhillfarm Izzy. This one is by the noted Wilodge Vantastic and is out of Bankdale Alice, making her full sister to last year’s champion and multi award winning heifer Foxhillfarm Gracie.

The Alford family then celebrated further success when they won the Duke of Norfolk trophy for the best team of three pedigree calves, with the Shorthorn team standing reserve. Reserve to them was the Beef Shorthorn team of three from Tracey Severn. Charles and Sally Horrell and Brenda Wear.

Reserve spot in the Angus lines went to Wickmere Poppy N623 from A Hurn and partners, born in January she is by Jerusalem Mr Bojangles G130 and out of Balioua Pearl H173.

Meanwhile, reserve in the Limousins also went to the Alfords, this time with Foxhillfarm Impecabull, again by Vantastic and out of Bankdale Alice. He was the winner of the Cornwall Calf Show earlier in the winter season.

Taking top honours in the Beef Shorthorn championship was Tracey Severn’s Highlee Gabriel. This Vulcan of Upsall son is out of the show cow Highlee Blackbrook Dipsy. This February born calf is on his first outing on his own after being shown at foot of his dam this summer.

Standing reserve was Harry Horrell’s January-born Podehole Madeline Glamour. She is out of the 2009 Highland Show champion Podehole Madeline Zeta and sired by Trojan of Craigeassie which claimed the interbreed championship at the Royal Highland Show 2011.

The Charolais classes saw the Rix family win with Wissington Impish, an April-born Gretnahouse Ferdinand son out of Seawell Arnica. This one has already stood reserve champion at the South of England Calf Show. Reserve here went to the Harrison family with Lakenheath Ivory, a home bred heifer by Lakenheath Delboy.

Topping the line in the Lincoln Reds was Julie Evans’ Springwood Sterling. This March-born calf is by Hemingby dragoon and out of Hemingby Treasure K502.

Taking the championship tickets home in the Red Poll classes was John Williams with the April-born Pinguis Duke, a Kemerton Zetalnd bull calf out of Marsh house Xandra. This one has already taken a first prize at the Shropshire Calf Show when he was just three months old. Reserve here went to the winner of the senior bull calf class, Abbey Ceasar from David Blunt. Born in September 2012, he is by Onerfawr Prince and is out of Abbey Willow.

Then in the Simmental classes it was David and Lesley Sapsed that took the championship with Heathbrow Ex Factor, an April 2013-born son of senior sock bull Dirnanean Welcome out of Darsham Real Treasure, a daughter of the successful show cow Darsham Kit Kat. This one will be featuring in the summer team for the Heathbrow herd next year.

Reserve here was Rhys Grenham with Boars Head Dare Devil, a son of Sacombe Balmoral out of a Hocknhull-bred cow.

The last of the pedigree calf shows was the South Devons in which top spot went to Paul and Pam Harrison with Brafferton Trooper 20, a January-born home bred bull calf by Lumbylaw Leo 2 and out of a previous show cow Brafferton Stella’s Betty.

East of England Smithfield Festival 2013

Exciting new plans are well underway for the 2013 East of England Smithfield Festival which takes place on Thursday 5th & Friday 6th December 2013.

"Our dates have moved to weekdays reflecting the event’s aim to target farming businesses. To do this during the trading week days is essential for both trade exhibitors and visitors," says event organiser Kerry Buttriss “We also plan to include new technical elements this year and will announce more details in due course.”

Livestock judging continues at the heart of the East of England Smithfield Festival with a strong line of cattle, sheep and carcase judges.

Judging commercial cattle and baby beef will be experienced and renowned livestock breeder Archie MacGregor. Mr MacGregor from Allanfauld Farm, Kilsyth, near Glasgow, runs a mixed farm of Limousin and Charolais cattle and Texel and Blackface sheep.

He has judge numerous leading events and bred the 2011 Smithfield cattle Champion, Allanfauld Fizz.

The show is pleased to be welcoming back Somerset butcher Stuart Clatworthy to judge the sheep section. Mr Clatworthy of Highbridge, Somerset supported and judged the East of England Agricultural Society’s primestock cattle classes back in 2009. Stuart has a wealth of experience as a well-respected judge, having covered both the Welsh and English Winter Fairs amongst others.

James Glaves, an award winning butcher from Scarborough will take on the task of judging the lamb carcasses and beef ribs.

“The carcass classes are hotly contested and James will face a tough decision,” says Festival Chairman Charles Horrell. “However, these classes really raise the profile of the Festival. There will be some meat of outstanding quality to buy from the event and we hope this encourages more visitors to join us.”

Newark Livestock Market will once again sponsor the cattle classes and be the official auctioneers for the sale that forms an integral part of the whole Festival. Newark Market has an dedicated team who are committed to the event and are the first point of contact for any potential vendor or buyer.

Also new for the 2013 Festival will be a number of VIP visitors and a new seminar programme to extend the appeal of the event to all beef and sheep farmers.
“We are delighted that NFU Vice President Adam Quinney will be joining us on the first day,” said Mr Horrell. “We will soon be announcing our seminar programme that will include leading speakers on meat production, livestock breeding and livestock economics.”

For further information visit:  www.eoesmithfieldfestival.co.uk

East of England Smithfield Festival

East of England Showground, Peterborough – 30 November & 1 December 2012

Following on from the success of the inaugural East of England Smithfield Festival the organisers are pleased to confirm a top drawer line-up of judges for the 2012 show.

This year’s East of England Smithfield Festival, which once again has Newark Livestock Market as the major sponsor and Farmers Guardian as its media partner, aims to build on the last year’s event, with the introduction of a number of new features.

Taking on the task of adjudicating in this year’s prime cattle and baby-beef classes will be leading butcher and showman Jonathan Maycock of Matlock Derbyshire.

Mr Maycock, who is responsible for the day to day running of his family’s traditional butchers shop and abattoir is a widely respected cattle judge who has previously judged at both the English and Welsh Winter Fairs.

He also runs a small farm at home and has previously exhibited cattle at several major shows, so is well placed to pick this year’s supreme champions.

Across in the sheep ring another leading butcher and farmer, Anthony Glaves of Brompton-By-Sawdon, Scarborough, will have the honour of awarding this year’s top prizes.

Mr Glaves is no stranger to the limelight, having previously won the Royal Smithfield championship and judged at leading winter shows, including the English Winter Fair. Alongside the family butchers shop Mr Glaves runs successful pedigree and commercial sheep flocks, breeding Southdown, Suffolk and Texel sheep as well as running a small herd of Berkshire pigs.

Other judges confirmed for this year’s show include Cornwall-based Gayle Bersey who will judge the final of the Young Stockperson of the Year competition and Dan Bull, Lambourne, who will have the task of adjudicating in this year’s College Challenge.

Event manager Kerry Buttriss said all four judges were well known faces in the livestock industry having all had previous judging and showing experience across the UK. “We are looking forward to building on the success of last year’s inaugural event and the early indications are that both livestock and trade stand numbers will be up on 2011.

For further information visit:  www.eoesmithfieldfestival.co.uk

New Smithfield - dedicated beef and sheep exhibition at Livestock 2012

Livestock Event, N.E.C. Birmingham, 4 & 5 September 2012

New Smithfield, the feature designed to help all commercial beef producers improve their enterprise margins is extending to the sheep sector at this year’s Livestock 2012.

Developed by the event’s organiser, the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers in partnership with The Royal Smithfield Club, and sponsored by EBLEX, New Smithfield will feature displays for all beef and sheep producers and offer them an opportunity to meet with the leading meat processors. A series of workshops will provide information on a variety of areas, from use of EID, beef AI, eliminating fluke, farming profitably without payments and how to get in to sheep farming.

In addition, from a total of over 500 stands, more than 340 companies will be offering products and services of interest to beef produces, twice as many as any other UK livestock trade show, while for sheep producers, there will be 250 exhibitors of interest. Some of the UK’s leading processors will be offering advice on how to improve returns from achieving the ideal carcase specification, how to improve value and the importance of producing for specific markets.

Beef from the dairy herd is the EBLEX focus at the event, examining rearing, rations and selection for slaughter as well as options for dairy bull calves. Producers will also be able to test their carcase classification skills using the EBLEX virtual program. There will also be an opportunity to find out more about establishing a direct selling enterprise.

The Royal Smithfield Club’s Geoff Burgess comments: “Once again we are proud to work with RABDF to create this feature to help all beef and sheep producers identify ways in which they may improve their margins by introducing technology along with business and management information that is available for everyone in the industry to take up.”

“The UK’s largest specialist livestock event is not just about dairy, it will be focusing on beef and sheep too,” says RABDF chief executive, Nick Everington. “We are confident that all beef and sheep producers visiting the event will find a very professional exhibition at The NEC which reflects the true worth of the industry, and provides a one-stop shop for all livestock farmers, their partners and their staff.” New Smithfield, sponsored by EBLEX, will be staged in the Livestock Hall alongside the National All Breeds Show.

For further information visit – www.livestockevent.co.uk

Royal Smithfield Club Bicentenary Trophy

How can we recognise those who make a major contribution to our industry?  For many it is not possible, but within the livestock and meat sector there is a way - The Royal Smithfield Club Bicentenary Trophy.

Created to celebrate the bi-centenary of the founding of the Smithfield Club in 1798, the trophy is awarded each year to a person or organisation deemed to have made a significant contribution to the UK meat industry.  Recipients can be from any part of the industry - from livestock producers through education, research, processing to retailing.

Nominations are received each year by the Smithfield Club, from a wide range of people.  The thirty to forty nominees are considered by a panel made up of people from across all sectors who meet to create their shortlist from which they choose the winner for the year.

Past winners have been:

    • 2000 Sir Donald T.Y. Curry, CBE
    • 2001 Frederick J. Mallion, MBE
    • 2002 John Thorley, OBE
    • 2003 The Late Jack Woodhead
    • 2004 Norman Bagley
    • 2005 David Raine
    • 2006 J. Alan H. Stevenson, OBE
    • 2007 Ian Galloway, CBE, ARAgS
    • 2008 Dr Basil G. Lowman, MBE
    • 2009 Richard M. Cracknell
    • 2010 Professor Geoff Simm
    • 2011 J. Rees Roberts, OBE, BSc (Hons), FRAgS
    • 2012 H.R.H. The Prince of Wales
    • 2013 The Nuffield Farming Scholarships Trust

The Trophy is a silver Armada Dish, around the rim of which are twenty-five golden guineas, all dating from the late 1700's, which represent the loan of twenty-five guineas made by the House of Lords Farmers Club to help the foundation of The Smithfield Club.

Each of the guineas was given by a person, or company, with long association with the Club - the best known being The Late Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, who was President of The Royal Smithfield Show in 1983 and from 1987 to 2001.

The current Duke of Bedford donated the Armada Dish in memory of his ancestor, the 5th Duke of Bedford, who was instrumental in the formation of the Smithfield Cattle and Sheep Society, and hosted its first meeting at the Woburn Sheep Shearings in June 1799.

The objective of The Club were then, and remain today, the research into and promotion of best practice in the production of quality primestock to meet the needs of the consumer.

It is very fitting that a trophy in memory of the founding of those objectives should, over 200 years later, be awarded to those who stand by the same convictions

To receive a nomination form for the next award please contact: sally@royalsmithfieldclub.co.uk.

Nullfield Scholarships

The Club is delighted to support The Nuffield Farming Scholarships Trust.

Nuffield is an organisation which awards individuals with life changing opportunities that span their personal and professional lives, with a view to developing agricultural sector leaders and innovators of the future.

They have funding available to sponsor overseas travel and assist with a period of study, and are always looking to attract new candidates. If you are farming yourself, or work in an industry associated to agriculture and rural industry, then please take the opportunity to explore the website and find out what Nuffield has to offer – www.nuffieldscholar.org.