Ribble Valley farmer wins prime lambs title

James Towler, second from right, with his Skipton prime lamb champions, joined by, from left, CCMs Andrew Fisher, William Towler, the victors nephew, and judge James Dewhurst.
James Towler, second from right, with his Skipton prime lamb champions, joined by, from left, CCMs Andrew Fisher, William Towler, the victors nephew, and judge James Dewhurst.
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Grindleton farmer James Towler, of Steelands Farm, was crowned champion at Skipton Auction Mart's monthly prime lamb show with a pen of five home-bred 41kg Beltex-cross.

All in the title-winning pen were by a pure-bred ram acquired at last September’s main pedigree Beltex highlight at Skipton from Durham breeder Henry Jewitt. They sold for £114 each to regular Red Rose butcher buyer Hamlets, of Garstang.

Heavy lambs again stepped up a gear, with plenty of three-figure prices and those in the 46kg to 52kg weight range averaging 209p/kg. The best Mule wethers and hill-bred lambs were 10p/kg dearer on the week, with good 43-47kg types making 195p to £2 per kilo and horned lambs selling in the 180s up to 190p/kg.

Taking into account that the increased entry of 2,815 old season lambs included 1,059 Mule, horned and other hill-breds, then the overall selling average for all lambs of £85.12 per head, or 201.7p/kg, was deemed even more remarkable.