BLACK BEAUTY: Peter Addison showing one of his Zwartbles sheep
BLACK BEAUTY: Peter Addison showing one of his Zwartbles sheep

HEAVY rain the night before did not deter exhibitors and visitors alike from enjoying a successful Brough Show which continues to show strong growth.

Although sheep entries were slightly down on previous years, other categories have expanded and more exhibitors than ever than ever were displaying their wares and services.

This is partly due to changes brought in by show secretary David Prince.

He said: “The interesting thing is the tractors. When I took over five years ago there were half a dozen. This year I had to turn some late entries away.”

The change is partly due to the reduced fees classic tractor owners are being charged to exhibit their machines.

Brian Park, who has been exhibiting his tractors at Brough Show for the past ten years, brought along a 1965 John Brown 990, the same model he used to work with before retiring.

He bought the tractor about a decade ago and had it refurbished.

The 70-year-old said: “It is just a hobby. Because you have been working with them all your life you keep them around. It gets you out of the house and into the shed to tinker around.”

Alan Alderson, who owns the land on which the show takes place, explained that the reduced sheep entry was due, in part, to conflicting events. Beltex entries were down because the breed show was happening at Carlisle at the same time, he said.

The former chairman of the Swaledale Breeders Association added that entries in other breeds had risen, such as Zwartbles.

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He thought the recent drought may have had an affect, but some of the upland breeds, like the Swalesdales faired well.

He said: “The Swaledale has enjoyed the sun. An animal doesn’t need to eat as much.”

He added however, that the lamb crop was not as good as in the past.

Mr Alderson said: “There is great quality [sheep on show]. There’s a lot of top breeders and strong young breeders.”

Teesdale had a good start to the show with Peter and Susan Addison, of Hayberries, near Eggleston, showing five Zwarbles and a Beltex.

They took a red rosette in their very first class for an aged or shearling ram.

Middleton-in-Teesdale Dales Pony breeder David Eccles also had a great start.

His daughter Rachel Cook said: “It has been good so far. We got first in brood mare and foal with Westwick Heather and first geld mare with Westwick Polly.”

Mrs Cook’s son Louie also won the best marked coloured pony class.

Full results from Brough Show will appear in the Mercury's next Farm and Country supplement.