Poultry club crowing

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More than 1,300 exhibits had enthusiasts from all over the UK flocking to the Peebles and District Poultry and Bantam Club show last Sunday.

With record entries, up 10 per cent on last year, this is the biggest show the club has ever held, and cements its position as a top Scottish poultry event with 130 exhibitors vying for prizes. Peebles is one of very few shows in Scotland that have Poultry Club of Great Britain affiliated status, ensuring high standards.

Thanks to Millers Town and Country, which has a branch in Peebles, and GH Engineering, signing up as main sponsors, the prize money for many categories was doubled.

Exhibits ranged from large fowl to bantams, turkeys, waterfowl, geese and eggs. Best in show this year went to a spangled old English game bantam pullet shown by A and J Cumming, Glenfarg, who came to the show fresh from their overall vistory at the Scottish National Show at Lanark.

The runner-up was the white call duck shown by G Waddell of Broxburn, who won the overall championship at Peebles in 2010 and was just pipped at the post this time.

A number of local exhibitors secured silverware with best-of-breed and championship birds. Jimmy Hope of Broughton scooped the best trio (cockerel and two hens) with his eye-catching Poland bantams with their distinctive white crests. Jimmy won the overall poultry section at last year’s Peebles Agricultural Show.

James Dickson of Dolphinton lifted the very competitive best juvenile (12-16 years old) with his Welsummer bantam cockerel – his second choice for the show. James won best novice at the Agricultural Show.

The Peebles club’s secretary, Hazel Dickson, had two birds in the championship row – best heavy breed bantam with her German Langshan bantam pullet and best utility bird with a large Ancona.

Colin and Jenni Driver from Broughton won best large rare breed with a Marsh Daisy, and were narrowly beaten by the Yokohama bantam cockerel of turkey expert Janice Houghton-Wallace, Newton Stewart, for the place on championship row.

Colin and Jenni also topped the new class for best Derbyshire Red Cap.

Eddie McClintock of Gorebridge won the Hamburgh best of breed and Hamburgh Club Show, despite tough competition. Danny Walkinshaw of Peebles lifted the overall best of Sussex breed with his Sussex bantam.

Dorinda Fontana of Kailzie won two best of breeds – Brahma and Faverolle. AW Anderson of Duns took the Australorp best of breed title, and A and J Robertson of Kelso won best of breed with their Rosecomb.

This year’s egg section was very well supported, with 202 plates of eggs of every shape, size and colour.

Also proving popular again this year was the auction. As the sale birds are supplied by exhibitors or judges, the high quality always guarantees keen competition among buyers. With 36 sets of poultry under the hammer, the top price was £80 for a quartet of Sumatra game, a rare breed, sold by Pam Tapson of Yetholm.

Club secretary Hazel Dickson said: “Running a show of this magnitude involves a great deal of work. The club is grateful to the many volunteers who helped.”