Sheep breeders selling at the NSA Wales and Border's Main Ram Sale at Builth Wells on Monday, had plenty to celebrate with most breed averages up on the year.

By the end of the day, 3425 sheep had changed hands to average £533.51 with an 86% clearance. This represents a rise of £23.06 on the year for 390 fewer sold.

“It’s been a great sale and a great relief,” said chairman, Richard Gwilliam.

“There has been a very strong trade throughout and particularly for Suffolks. There was so much competition and the confidence to buy them was colossal. We thought they were going out of fashion but they seemed to do the best trade of the day.

“Across the board, trade has been very strong and people are very, very happy,” said Mr Gwilliam adding that turnover was £1,827,255.

This year’s event also saw a new ring dedicated to pedigree Texels sold through Hexham and Northern Marts, which proved highly successful, producing the day’s top price of 7000gns complete with the lead average of £773.

In contrast to the Texel society ring sales, the sheep in this ring had not been inspected prior to the sale and therefore some could have also been trimmed slightly.

“I was approached by some of the Texel breeders last year to set up a new ring for pedigree MV accredited shearlings and it went really well. The breeders were looking for a ring in which they could present their sheep to their best and they sold better than ever,” said auctioneer, Chris Armstrong, who was delighted with the sale and expects a lot more breeders on board next year.

Sale leader at 7000gns was the pre-sale Texel champion in that new ring from Jonathan Watson’s Brijon flock, from Berwick upon Tweed. He is by the £23,000 Midlock You’re the One, out of a Brackenridge Strongbow daughter and sold to the Morgan family for the Blaencar flock, Sennybridge, Brecon.

On the other side of the coin, Mr Watson and Ben Marsden, Liley Farms, went to to 4400gns to buy another from the new ring from Michael and Ella James’ Duhonw flock from Wales. He is by Strathbogie Yamaha and out of a Meinspride Usain-sired ewe.

Second top price was 6000gns paid for the society pre-sale Texel champion from the Ingram family’s Logie Durno flock from Pitcaple, Inverurie, purchased by the Priestleys buying for their Brontemoor flock from Carlisle. Logie Durno Braveheart is by Caereinion Ace and out of a dam by Livery Ultimatum.

Another from Logie Durno, a son of Elmscleugh Assasin, realised 3000gns to Jack Arnott, Haymount, Kelso.

Scolton Bespoke, a Caereinion Rocket son from the Reed family from Pembrokeshire, sold next at 5000gns. He is out of a dam by Caereinion Valuable and was knocked down to CD Timm, Appelton Roebuck, York.

Two Texel shearlings sold for 4000gns to include Canllefaes Bruno from WT Davies and Co, Cardigan, purchased by HR Jones, Painscastle, Powys. He is by Talcoed You Know.

Second was AE Williams and Son’s Clun Big Boy, a son of Craig Douglas Ya Belter, bred from a ewe by Glenside Uri, purchased by RE and CJ Davies, Yockleton, Shrewsbury.

At 3600gns Paul Johnson’s Corriecravie Benchmark, the first prize winner in the Texelplus recorded class in the pre-sale and the reserve overall champion, sold to Alan Jackson, Alnwick. The sire was Sportsmans Alonso.

John Elliot, Kelso also came up with the goods selling the reserve champion in the new ring, a son of Craig Farm Wizard for 3000gns to L Hadfield and Son, Peak Forest, Buxton.

Other Scottish breeders making their mark amongst the Texels included Charles Scott, Jedburgh who went to 2700gns for the shearling Canllefaes Bang On from the Davies family.

And, Donald MacPherson, Berwick upon Tweed, sold a ram lamb at 2000gns to Ben Lowe, Wem, Shrewsbury. Hexel Cognac is by Plasucha All Star.

Strong commercial demand for Suffolks saw MV ram lambs sell to 1050gns to average £454, up £58 on the year with non-MV Suffolks rising £160 to average £729, from a lead price of 1650gns

Charollais were topped at 3200gns; South Country Cheviots sold to 2000gns and North Country Cheviots were topped at 1000gns.

MAINBREED averages

Ring Breed Type No Averages Clearance

1and 2 BFL ShRams (290) 573.34 502 97%

Rlambs (97) 591.14 604 73%

3 Non-MVSuffolks Rams (71) 622.01 546 87%

4 Non MVSuffolks Rams (202) 729.49 565 100%

5 MVSuffolks RLambs (74) 454.91 397 93%

6A Berrichon ShRams (32) 512.87 397 –

6B Blue Texel Rams (21) 554.05 £555 88%

RLambs (18) 414.75 423 60%

7 Hampshire Rams (25) 261.38 355 69%

8 Beltex Rams (33) 346.02 426 85%

9 Texel Rams (165) 574.95 498 95%

Texel X Rams (40) 681.19 458 87%

Beltex X Rams (40) 626.59 726 91%

Char X Rams (12) 412.13 – 71%

BFL X Rams (61) 408.30 431 91%

10 Lleyn MV Rams (74) 439.30 398 85%

11 and

12 Texel ShRams (551) 766.60 682 96%

13 Texel RLambs (304) 365.32 374 82%

14 B Leicester Rams (35) 377.49 300 88%

15 Texel MV Rams (67) 772.77 – 76%

Texel MV RLambs (15) 507.50 – 94%

16 Char MV ShRams (163) 588.39 607 86%

Char MV RLambs (141) 424.80 470 72%

20 SCCheviot Rams (69) 514.50 418 93%

NCCheviot PRams (102) 433.18 – 99%