Charolais again took the top spot at United Auctions’ Stirling Bull Sales, securing the lead price of 20,000gns and the top average of £6627 for 43 sold.

The breed average was also up £892 on the year, but for 20 fewer sold and the clearance rate was similar to the previous breed sales at 60%.

The breed’s chief executive, Peter Phythian, remained upbeat: “The sale reflected the flying trade for store cattle where Charolais crosses continue to attract the top prices. We also had a good show of Charolais bulls, which helped to bolster our sale average.”

Commenting on the reduced numbers forward and sold, Mr Phythian added: “Some breeders were unsure if the sale would go ahead due to the ongoing pandemic and if they got the chance to sell their bulls privately they did. However, we have to look after our live markets, and going forward we hope everyone will come back to selling through the ring in future.

“United Auctions did a fantastic job keeping everything running smoothly on top of all of the challenges faced in the current situation. The main thing is we were able to have the sale and that is what we have to protect,” he added.


The Scottish Farmer:

SALE LEADER, Gretnahouse Primate, achieved 20,000gns for Alasdair Houston


It was Gretnahouse Primate that came out on top for Alasdair Houston, Gretnahouse, Kilpatrick Farming, when his boy was knocked down at 20,000gns to Dumfries-shire breeder, Hamish Goldie, South Bowerhouses, Ruthwell. This April, 2019-born entry – brought out by stockman, John Morton – is a son of Westcarse Jimmy, a bull purchased here for 11,000gns, out of the Blelack Digger daughter, Gretnahouse Iugesse.

Primate also boasts Lakeland Sagesse, the legendary cow which features on many of the top priced Gretnahouse bulls, on both sides of his pedigree.

The same home also received 7000gns from Roy and Andrew McNee, Woodend, Armadale, for Gretnahouse Pointer.

A similarly aged bull, he is by Balthayock Gladiator, which was purchased here for 18,000gns and has already bred sons to 25,000gns. The dam, Gretnahouse Lannabel, has also bred bulls to 25,000gns and is by Wesley Equinox.

The Scottish Farmer:

THIS BULL, Glenericht Pablo sold for 16,000gns for WK and P Drysdale


Hitting 16,000gns was the 18-month-old, Glenericht Pablo, from Allen Drysdale, Middle Drimmie, Blairgowrie. He is by the easy calving Glenericht Limpet, a Fleets Vibrant son that has been breeding well for the herd. The dam is Glenericht Juicygirl, which has bred several females for the herd. Pablo headed home with Lanarkshire breeders, Colin and Fiona Wight, Carwood, Biggar.

The Drysdale team had a cracking trade, selling another two at 8800gns and 7000gns – both of which were sired by Glenericht Limpet. Dearest was Glenericht Parker, purchased by WS Paterson, Golland, Kinross.


The Scottish Farmer:

ANOTHER FROM WK and P Drysdale peaked at 8800gns – this was Glenericht Parker


This April, 2019-born lad is out of the Clyth Diplomat daughter, Glenericht Hayley, which is one of the best breeding females in the herd having produced the 2018 reserve senior champion here that went on to sell for 8000gns.

Selling up to the Isle of Syke with AJ Beaton, Gesto, Struan, at 7000gns, was Glenericht President, bred from the Blelack Digger daughter, Glenericht Idyll, which was also the dam of the February, 2019, reserve senior champion here.

The Campbell family, Ian and sons, Bruce and Andrew, who run the Thrunton herd, at Alnwick, also had a good day selling their best at 10,000gns with four bulls averaging £8450.


The Scottish Farmer:

TOP PRICE among for the Thrunton herd was 10,000gns for Thurnton Paramount


Their best, Thrunton Paramount, purchased by Orkney producers, WR Baillie and Co, Biggings, Toab, Deerness, is a 19-month-old son of the 28,000gns Maerdy Jerusalem, which has bred bulls to 10,000gns, out of Thrunton Lucinda, a daughter of the 26,000gns Thrunton Gladiator.

The Scottish Farmer:

THRUNTON PERFORMER sold for 8800gns for the Campbell family


Next best from the 75-cow herd was an 8800gns sale for Thrunton Performer purchased by Dumfries-shire producer, W Barbour, Carsegowan, New Abbey. This March, 2019-born entry is another son of Jerusalem, whilst the dam Thrunton Floret, goes back to the 26,000gns former senior champion winner here, Balmyle Dickler.


The Scottish Farmer:

This boy also made his mark for the Thrunton herd when he attained 8000gns 


William and Moira Milne, Ernan, Waterside, Strathdon, bought the 8000gns Thrunton Platinum, a son of Thrunton Gladiator, which in turn was sired by Balmyle Dickler. His dam is Thrunton Hoopla, a Thrunton Doubletop daughter. Platinum is a full brother to Thrunton Nugget – the top price at the February, 2019, event.

At 7000gns, the Campbells sold Thrunton Pathos, to J and W Kellas, Raws, Dufftown, Keith. Another by the same sire, he is out of Thrunton Linnet, by Thrunton Gladiator.

The Scottish Farmer:

BALMYLE PANTHER reached 8000gns for Bill Bruce


Top price for Bill Bruce’s Perthshire-based Balmyle herd, from Meigle was 8000gns paid for Balmyle Panther. Brought out by stockman Dane Ivison, this 17-month-old is one of the first crop of sons by Balthayock Minstrel – the pre-sale champion here in February 2018. The dam, Balmyle Dorothea, is the herd’s oldest cow and is by Sackville Adonis. Panther headed home with W and W Dawson and Sons, Whinbrae, Huntly, Aberdeenshire.

After his big purchase, Hamish Goldie, South Bowerhouses, recouped some of his spend selling Goldies Premier for 7200gns to Terry Coghill, Muce, Birsay, Orkney. This 19-month-old is from the first crop of Balthayock Marquis sons and out of the Gretnahouse Heman daughter, Goldies Lilac, which is a full sister to the 10,000gns Goldies Nadine.

Bombax Pirate was one of the six bulls to hit the 7000gns bracket for Chas Smeaton, Cotton of Ovenstone, Inverarity, Forfar. His 21-month-old is a son of Westcarse Houdini, and out of the heifer, Mornity Marilyn, by Maerdy Hwre. He sold to Easter Tulloch, Laurencekirk.

Matching that sale was Marwood Pascal from Neil Blyth, Elwick, Hartlepool. This 17-month-old is a son of the 16,000gns Balthayock Lineup, out of Marwood Iona, by Sportsmans Columbo. Ayrshire breeders, WF and H Logan, Maxwelston, Girvan, Ayrshire, forked out the cash.

The last of the 7000gns bids came for Elrick Platoon from Mike and Lisa Massie, Mains of Elrick, Ellon. Their June, 2019-born bull is backed by strong genetics, being a son of Maerdy Gouverneur, which has bred bulls to 25,000gns, whilst the dam, Elrick Lohan, is by Thrunton Fearless. Platoon sold up to Orkney with K and S Meason, Frustigarth, Shapinsay.

Best for Richard Hassell’s Brailes Livestock, Isalyn, Banbury, was a 6800gns sale to Ross Farms, Wester Middleton, Gorebridge, Midlothian. His 17-month-old bull, Bassett Piper, was purchased as a young calf from Jean Atkinson, and is by Whitecliffe Lacroix, out of Bassett Hifi.