Westruther gets ready for 70th annual show

Colin and Pam Cessford, Belmont, won the Westruther Show overall championship with their two-crop Suffolk ewe which was bought as a gimmer from Sandy Sutherland's dispersal.
Colin and Pam Cessford, Belmont, won the Westruther Show overall championship with their two-crop Suffolk ewe which was bought as a gimmer from Sandy Sutherland's dispersal.

Westruther Show celebrates its 70th year this weekend with overall judge John Young having attended a quite remarkable 55 of them.

The show is tomorrow (Saturday, August 31) on the showground just behind the village hall with sheep judging starting at 10.30am and the pet show taking place at 1.30pm. The sheepdog trial, which will be held at Cammerlaws Farm, starts at 9am.

Judge in the Blackface section is Ian Pringle, The Glen; Cheviots judge is Jane Jackson, Ericstane. Mules/Blues come under the eye of John McDougall, The Shields, while Prime Lambs will be judged by John Guiry, Glanton. Multi-breed section judge is Scott Sandilands, Threepwood. Pet show judge is Kath Lothian.

Always a friendly, fun show, the other attractions on the day include BBQ, bar and Overlangshaw ice cream.

Overall judge John Young was shepherd at Thirlestane farm for 35 years, from 1973 until 2008.

John’s long association with Westruther started when he showed most years, with his best year coming in 1984 when he won the dog trial and had the reserve champion sheep in the same year.

John said: “We have a lot of different breeds showing here now. Originally when it started, it was North Country Cheviots and Blackface sheep. There are a lot of continental breeds now. The show has gotten bigger over the years with addition of attractions like the pet show and, of course, more breeds competing. And the quality at the show is really good for the size of show.

“We have a really great committee at Westruther, with secretary Fiona and treasurer Sandra, in particular, putting a lot of effort into staging the show.”

And as for the champion this year, John said that looking for a ‘stand-out’ among the class champions would be the best way of putting it, something that ‘grabs the attention’.