SW Scotland turned out in force to support Grant Hurcomb in his bid to shear for 24 hours at the weekend.
Wool was whipped off super quick in the Scottish National and Open Sheep Shearing heats, semis and finals on day four of the four-day Royal Highland Show extravaganza at Ingliston, Edinburgh.
Scotsman Simon Bedwell fired out 20 North Country Cheviot hoggs in 15 mins and 56 seconds (47.8s per sheep) in a bid to take out the Scottish National title, while later in the day, Hamish Mitchell, who now farms in Norway, went all out to take the time advantage in the Open class, peeling his score of Scotch Mule hoggs and pushing them down the porthole in 15 mins and 47 seconds, averaging 47.35 seconds each.
A 21 year old shearer from New Luce, Dumfries and Galloway, is pulling out all the stops and going for a 24-hour charity shear.
Welsh sheep shearers certainly made their journey worth while by taking six of the possible sixteen finalist stands at South of Scotland Shears, held at the Barony College, Dumfries, at the weekend.
In the Autumn of 2011 I heard about a shepherding competition, with the fantastic prize of a trip to New Zealand! ..writes Gregor Ingram, NSA Young Shepherd of the Year 2011
Buying and running a farm at 23 years old is a young farmer’s dream – one that was reality for Ewen Macmillan, Lurg, Fintry. Seventeen years on he is a well respected Blackface Breeder, one of the leading lights, commanding impressive prices for both breeding males and females, in an industry, which is, by no means, the easiest to crack.
Farming in the National Park just above Keswick in the Lake District, Will Cockbain has seen many changes over the years. “There are less sheep on the hills due to Agri-enviromental Agreements. Initially the stock did better, but now sheep numbers are too low in some areas and vegetation is too long. Sheep are the losing the immunity to ticks and such like.
From the bottom, almost any direction is up. That's the outcome that wool industries around the world will be expecting from the Campaign for Wool, launched in late June by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales.
Tourists and heavy rain drove the farming partners Brian Walling and his cousin Robert Hudson out of Cumbria sixteen years ago.
Matthew Simpson of Tardoes Farm, Kilmarnock, is one of the numerous Scottish farmers to exit the dairy industry in the past ten years.