Despite a top price £10,000 below last year’s equal record breaking £160,000, and a further 15 five-figure sales, Blackface ram lamb averages slipped almost £500 on the year at Lanark.

It was nevertheless a great day for Muirkirk breeders, Hugh and Alan Blackwood, Auldhouseburn, who not only sold the sale leader at £150,000 but also sold another two at five figures.

Notably, their pen, which averaged a whopping £36,333 for six, were all sons of last year’s £160,000 Elmscleugh ram lamb bought here. The pen leader also boasted Elmscleugh genetics on the dam’s side being a daughter of an £85,000 Elmscleugh lamb. With a third share retained, the remaining £100,000 was split between neighbouring breeder, John Murray, Crossflatt and Paul Coulson, High Staward, Hexham.

Record breaking genetics were behind the No 2 lamb too, which sold to a quartet of Northern Ireland breeders in Charlie Harkin, The Rock; Hugh Devine, Glenmornan; Brian Harkin, Moneygran and Grant Bros, Craigdoo for £35,000. The dam is a daughter of the £160,000 Dalchirla lamb.

Adding to the celebrations, Auldhouseburn’s third lamb, bred from a ewe by a £50,000 Crossflatt, made £22,000 selling to Andrew and Iain Cullens, Dollarbank, Dollar; Eoin and Kirstyn Blackwood, Dalblair, Muirkirk; the Dunlops from Upper Wellwood also Muirkirk and Aberuchill Management, Comrie, ‘herded by Craig Paterson.

Second top price was £38,000 paid for the pen leader from John Murray, Crossflatt, Muirkirk. A son of the £32,000 Dalchirla lamb bought at Dalmally last year, bred from a ewe by the £90,000 Blackhouse lamb, he was knocked down to David Morrison, Dalwyne, Barr; David Murray, Lurgan, Aberfeldy and Andrew Walker, Crammie, Glenprosen.

Another two lambs by the £32,000 Dalchirla lamb sold at £8000 each.

Sons of the 7000gns James McCurdy lamb bought at Ballymena last year, also proved popular for Crossflatt with sales at £35,000 and £13,000.

Both are also bred from daughters of Tornado – a home-bred son of a £160,000 Dalchirla retained for breeding, with the former and No 2 selling to Malcolm Coubrough, Hartside Farms, Lamington and Auldhouseburn. The third lamb made £13,000 and goes out to work at Mitchellhill, Broughton, Biggar, having been purchased by Angus Kennedy and son Angus.

Willie Dunlop and sons Quintin and William, Elmscleugh, Dunbar, also had a good day with sales at £24,000, £9000 and £7000, with the dearest, selling to John Harkin, Loughash, Northern Ireland. A son of the £45,000 Midlock lamb bought here in 2017, he is bred from a ewe by a £3000 Crossflatt.

On the other side of the coin, Loughash received the same money for their No 2, by the £30,000 Loughash lamb sold here in 2017 of which a share was retained. Fellow Northern Ireland breeders, Veronica and Patrick Fullerton were the final bidders on this cracker bred from a ewe by a £14,000 High Staward.

Billy Renwick and son Andrew, Blackhouse, Yarrow and Alan Rogerson, manager at Burncastle Farming, Lauder, also got in on the action, buying an a lamb from Colin Campbell, Easter Happrew, Stobo, Peebles, at £20,000. Their purchase, a son of the £75,000 Dalchirla bought at Dalmally in 2017, is out of a ewe by a £30,000 Elmscleugh.

While several breeders enjoyed a good day, it was a dream come true for Richard Colley and son Richard, when they produced their first five-figure tup, selling a tup for Buccleugh Estates’ 3800-strong Mitchellslacks ewe flock hirsel for £18,000. The lamb, a son of a £5200 Auldhouseburn lamb bought at Stirling last year, is bred from a ewe by Popeye, a lamb bought privately from Auldhouseburn. Male champion at Moffat Show, he sold to Billy Renwick and son Andrew, Blackhouse, Yarrow; Elmscleugh and Iain Campbell, Glenrath, Peebles.

Lambs from Allan Wight, son Allan and his son Ben, Midlock, Crawford, as always proved popular with sales at £17,000 and £10,000. Dearest was the No 2, a son of the £24,000 Connachan shearling, out of a ewe by Gold Blend – a home-bred son of a £40,000 Dalchirla retained for breeding. Jimmy and Donald MacGregor, Dyke, Milton of Campsie were the final bidders.

Midlock’s pen leader, by a home-bred son of a £25,000 Elmscleugh and bred from a ewe by the £100,000 Elmscleugh lamb, made £10,000 to Neil Barclay and sons Stuart and Magnus, Harestone, Insch and Elmscleugh.

Almost financing the £17,000 Midlock purchase, Dyke received £16,000 for a lamb brought out with assistance from stockman John Duncan. A son of the £70,000 Glenrath lamb bought here last year, bred from a ewe by Travis, a home-bred tup retained for breeding, he was knocked down to Jack and Sheila Kay, Hartside, Lammermuir and Jim Pate and son Gordon and family, Toxside, Gorebridge.

Sons of the £160,000 Elmscleugh lamb also proved popular for Iain Campbell, Glenrath, Peebles, with two selling at £13,000. The lambs, brought out by son in law, Steven Renwick, saw the first, bred from a ewe by an £11,000 Greenside lamb, sell to John and Iain Finlay, Blackcraig, Corsock and Andrew Kay and sons Robert and Andrew, Gass, Straiton, with a half share retained.

The second, out of a daughter of a £14,000 Dalwyne, was knocked down to Andrew Paton and son Andrew, Craig, Straiton; Andrew Kay, Knockeen, Barr and Jimmy Wallace, Fingland, Dalry.

Two lambs sold for £10,000 including the best from Archie and John MacGregor, Allanfauld, Kilsyth, purchased by Newton Stewart breeders, Danny Hair, Drumbreddan and the Mitchell boys from Little Larg, New Luce. The breeding behind this cracker includes the £70,000 Glenrath lamb from last year onto a ewe by a £5000 Blackburn.

One of the last lambs sold matched that selling to Auldhouseburn. This was the pen leader from Alastair and David Macarthur, Nunnerie, Elvanfoot, a son of the £15,000 Balliemeanoch lamb bought last year.

Averages: 152 ram lambs, £5075.00 (-£485.18 for three fewer).

• Omitted from last week’s Blackface sale at Stirling was a £2200 call for a ram lamb from the Aberuchill Management’s Aberuchill flock herded by Craig Paterson, Comrie. A son of a £12,000 Nunnerie, he sold to I Junor, Inverness


Ram lambs – £9000 – Elmscleugh, by a £70,000 Glenrath, to D Henderson, Sweetshawhead, Elvanfoot; The Rock, by a £26,000 Auldhouseburn to J McCurdy, Carnlough, Broughshane, Northern Ireland; Milnmark, by a grand-son of a £16,000 Dyke retained for breeding, to A McClymont, Kirkstead and A McClymont, Dryhope and Crosswoodhill.

£8500 – The Rock, by a £45,000 Loughash to R Loughrey, Northern Ireland.

£8000 – Crossflatt by a £32,000 Dalchirla to R Hamilton, Laigh Balernock, Shandon, Helensburgh and FDA McVicar, Lephinchapel, Strachur, Argyll; Crossflatt by a £32,000 Dalchirla, to C Mitchell, Cookstown, Co Tyrone, Northern Ireland.

£7000 – Pole by a £9000 Elmscleugh to A Kay and Sons, Gass, Straiton; Elmscleugh by a £45,000 Midlock to Gass, Straiton.

£6500 – Glenrath, by £160,000 Elmscleugh, to R Carruthers, Merkland, Thornhill and J Carruthers, Silloans, Rochester.

£6000 – Little Large by a £3000 to Elmscleugh to Kirkland Farming, Sanquhar and W Graham and Sons, Craigdarroch, Sanquhar; Glenrath by a £160,000 Elmscleugh to S Robson, Yatesfield, Hexham and FJ Hall, Monkridge, Otterburn

£5800 – Dalblair, by a £28,000 Auldhouseburn, to J Pirie, Blarnavaid, Drymen.

£5200 – Elmscleugh, by a £58,000 Auldhouseburn, to S Duncan, Achdregnie, Glenlivet.

FLOCK averages

Mitchellhill (3) 4800 2566.66 ¬-

Crossflatt (5) 38,000 20,400.00 5400

Allanfauld (3) 10,000 5466.66 3617

Dyke (4) 16,000 5750.00 2683

Midlock (7) 17,000 5328.57 3700

Little Larg (3) 6000 3433.33 -

Merkland (4) 1500 950.00 -

Upper Wellwood (3) 1900 1133.33 1063

Gass (5) 4000 1350.00 1500

Elmscleugh (7) 24,000 7114.28 27,057

High Staward (5) 5000 1720.00 700

The Rock (6) 9000 4250.00 -

Easter Happrew (4) 20,000 6225.00 -

Hartside, Lammermuir (3) 4500 3000.00 -

Blackhouse (4) 2200 1350.00 -

Auldhouseburn (6) 150,000 36,333.33 23,980

South Cobbinshaw (3) 700 500.00 2263

Glenrath (6) 13,000 7316.66 29,900

Tinnis (3) 4500 3600.00 9167

Loughash (6) 24,000 7200.00 8375

Nunnerie (3) 10,000 3866.66 1760

Silloans (3) 3200 1300.00 -

Windhill/Craigview (3) 150 150.00 -

Dalblair (4) 5800 4200.00 4463