New crop of winners highlight good grassland management

Border Crop & Grassland Management Competition
Border Crop & Grassland Management Competition
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The winners of a region-wide crop and grassland management competition were announced following a dinner in Kelso last week.

The awards ceremony for the winners of the Border Union Agricultural Society and Kelso and District Agricultural Discussion Society’s competition took place at the Ednam House Hotel when judges praised the entries.

Competition chairman Keith Thomson said: “We had a good competition with a few new entries. The judges were all very impressed with standard and quality of all the farms.”

The championship decision-makers saw different types of farms and said everybody was doing “a first-class job”.

“They enjoyed seeing so many active old farmers still playing a very useful part in the business,” said Keith.

The motto for the competition is ‘It’s no what ye hae, it’s what ye dae wi what ye hae’ and the judges were asked to take this into consideration when viewing the farms as they were all very different units, he said.

And for the second year running, judges commented on how well the crops and livestock were looking on all farms considering the weather and some admitted to being a little envious of what they had seen over the two days of judging. Producer Ron Shaw of GS Shaw & Co, Smailholm Mains, Kelso won the championship.

Keith said: “The winner impressed with attention to detail and the fact that it was a mixed farm with crops and livestock.”

The judges of the large lowground farms were impressed with the quality of crops considering the conditions over the winter.

“They were also impressed with the farms having ways of adding extra value to the business. They liked the winner because the crops all looked exceptionally well and liked their proactive relationship with their landlords.”

In the lowland small farm category Keith said the judges were very complimentary about all entrants. “Some were farming in fairly challenging farms. They were impressed with the runner-ups marketing of his crops and beef – working closely with the end user.

“They thought that the winner had very good even crops and was making a very good job.”

Keith reported the judges of the stock rearing units said all entires were “very impressive”

“But the top two were clear winners and had won this competition before.”

The conservation judge would have like to have given everyone a prize.

Keith said: “They were all doing great work, but she thought the winner had made a plan and was achieving good results from a blank canvas.”

He and his wife Susan, the competition’s secretary, added: “The committee is extremely grateful for the very generous support received from the businesses and organisations who provided sponsorship. Also huge thanks to this years’ entrants, without whom there would be no competition, and the judges and stewards for giving up their time.”

Everyone interested is invited to a farm walk at the championship class winning farm, Smailholm Mains, Kelso (TD5 7RT) on Tuesday (July 16) at 7pm.

Championship class judged by Mr Willie Porter, West Scryne, Carnoustie and Mr Ian Stirling, Arbroath

1st (F Jackson Cup) – GS Shaw & Co, Smailholm Mains, Kelso

2nd (Mackenzie Trophy) – Peter Tweedie, Buchtrig, Hownam

Best winter wheat (Matt Prentice Quaich) – WB Hamilton & Sons, Bee Edge, Coldingham

JT Carmichael Cup for livestock presented by John Swan & Sons – Peter Tweedie, Buchtrig, Hownam

Lowground Smaller class judged by Mr James Grant Suttie, Balgone Estate, North Berwick and Mr Carl Tuer, manager of Rock Estate, Alnwick

1st (Thomson Trophy) – Alan & Robert Lamont, Dunslaw, Duns

2nd – David Fuller Shapcott, Sweethope, Kelso

Enterprises :

Combinable crops 1st – David Fuller Shapcott, Sweethope, Kelso

Root/veg/pulses 1st – Clive Forster, Hassendean Bank, Denholm

Grassland/livestock 1st – David Fuller Shapcott, Sweethope, Kelso

2nd – Robert Brickell, Holydean, Bowden

2nd – Alan & Robert Lamont, Dunslaw, Duns

2nd – Ian & Jane Mitchell, Courthill, Hawick

Lowground Larger class judged by Mr Andrew Rampley, Southoe, Cambridgeshire and Mr James Thorp, manager for AG Wright, Cambridgeshire

1st (Moore Cup) – Andrew & Guy Warcup, Ford & Etal, Northumberland

2nd – Jamie Tweedie, Middlethird, Gordon Enterprise:

Combinable crops 1st – Andrew & Guy Warcup, Ford & Etal

Root/veg/pulses 1st – Graeme Murray, Redden, Kelso

Grassland/livestock 1st – Jamie Tweedie, Middlethird, Gordon

2nd – Graeme Murray, Redden, Kelso

2nd – Andrew & Guy Warcup, Ford & Etal, Northumberland

2nd – Bruce Martin, Galagate, Norham

Stockrearing class judged by Mr Tom Cockburn, Kingside Farm, West Linton.

1st (Hogg Cup) – John Mitchell & Co, Rumbletonrig, Greenlaw

2nd – BQ Farming & Eckford Farming, Bowhill, Selkirk

Enterprises – Crops: 1st – John Mitchell & Co, Rumbletonrig, Greenlaw

Grassland/sheep 1st – John Mitchell & Co, Rumbletonrig, Greenlaw

Grassland/cattle 1st – John Mitchell & Co, Rumbletonrig, Greenlaw

2nd – BQ Farming & Eckford Farming, Bowhill, Selkirk

2nd – CP Harrison, Halliburton Farm, Greenlaw; 2nd – BQ Farming & Eckford Farming, Bowhill, Selkirk

AJ Fleming Trophy for Best 
Commercial Beef Enterprise – John Mitchell & Co, Rumbletonrig, Greenlaw

Conservation class, judged by Ms Leonie Alexander, The Wildlife Partnership, West Linton

1st (Buccleuch Quaich) – Robert Brickell, Holydean, Bowden

2nd (Buccleuch Quaich) – Ian & Jane Mitchell, Courthill, Hawick