A buoyant demand for most breeds ensured a sound commercial trade at the NSA Wales and Border’s main ram sale at the Royal Welsh Showground, on Monday. 
Despite a top price almost most half that of last year, averages improved on the year. This year there was a lead price of 9500gns for a Bluefaced Leicester ram lamb that sold north to Aberdeenshire, and £2.225m changed hands – up £13,000 on the year – with 87% finding new homes. From an entry of 5312 sheep, 4880 were forward of which 4244 changed hands to average £524.32, a rise of £13.87 on the year.
Sale leader was a traditional Blue lamb, from Michael and Nicky Gray’s Espley flock, from Morpeth, Northumberland. Champion at the pre-sale show and full brother to last year’s 7500gns and 2500gns rams sold at Builth, he is bred from a ewe by the C15 Gurgoer and sired by an F2 Ashes. Aberdeenshire breeders, William an Carole Ingram, forked out the cash to take him home to Logie Durno, Pitcaple.
Texels also enjoyed a good day, with Michael and Ella James’ local Dunhonw flock taking four of the top five shearling ram prices at 8600gns, 8000gns and 5200gns twice. Their consignment of 18 shearlings levelled at £2595.
Leading was their first prize shearling from the performance recorded class, Duhonw You Belter, a son of Meinspride Usain, out of a ewe by Hull House Texas Jack. He sold to Robert Rennie, Sydenham, Kelso, for the Robex flock, which will disperse its adult portion later this year.
Selling at 8000gns was the first prize open shearling and pre-sale champion, Duhonw You’re the One, also by Meinspride Usain out of another Texas Jack daughter. He sold in a three-way split to John Elliot jnr, Roxburgh Mains; Paul Philips, Kimbolton; and Ed Page, Bedale.
The two at 5200gns were also by Meinspride Usain, with the first shared by Ted Fox, Symington, Biggar, and Jonathan Watson, Bowsden Moor and the latter purchased by James Whiteford, Tercrosset, Brampton, Cumbria.
Third top Texel was 7600gns paid for a shearling ram from the Reed family’s Scolton flock, bought by Stephen Williams, Wollascott, Shropshire. He is by Caereinion Rocket and bred from a Caereinion Monarch-sired ewe. 
Michael Seed, from near Turriff, also went to 4500gns for a Texel shearling from the Davies family. This was Cannllefaes You Are the One, a Scolton Uranium son, out of a Tycam Smart daughter.
Dumfries-shire breeder, Derek Steen, Lockerbie, topped the Lleyn section with a shearling at 3500gns selling to Simon Kavanagh, Skipton.
Top priced Charollais at 2850gns was an entry from Jeremy Price, Oakchurch Farm, Hereford, which sold to Joe Powell, Welshpool.
And, in an all Scottish transaction, Tom and Alison Cockburn, Kingside, Peebles, sold the dearest North Country Cheviot, a shearling ram at 1800gns to Jane Jackson, Ericstane, Moffat.
David Alexander’s Blue Texels from Galston, peaked at 1500gns for a ewe purchased by CC and S Edwards of Bishops Castle.