Midlands Club report 2010


by Andrew Leedham

We started our club program with a quiz against the Centre West Club in March as usual held at the Greyhound Inn Yartlet and yet again David Bell and co triumphed, thanks once again to Chris and Kath Martindale for acting as question master and scorer.

In April, Ian Pritchard gave us an interesting and informative talk on cattle health schemes. This was well attended by regular members and quite a few new faces. This is obviously a topic on everyone’s minds at the moment.

In May, Jack and Jackie Smith toured around members farms to video cattle for the video competition to be judged later in the year and we also held a Junior Stockjudging training day at Jimmy and Vikki Wood's. Members travelled far and wide but the honours went close to home in the junior class with Hannah Wood winning and Sarah Pick from the North East won the seniors. Thanks again Jimmy and Vikki for your kind hospitality, the hog roast was excellent and the cattle as usual were top class.

John Barlow, Harry and Hannah Wood made the long trip north to the Royal Highland Show in June to represent the club in the Junior Stockjudging. Well done Harry for coming 3rd in the individual against strong opposition.

On a sad note Jim Skipper passed away , I'm sure he will be missed by all.

The National Show at the Great Yorkshire in July was well attended by Midland Club members, top of the prize-winners were Les and Norma Pennington who won Male Champion with their bull Annick Vesuvius , Harry Wood won the Forsdale trophy for Junior Stockmen and his sister Hannah came 2nd in the under 18 junior handlers class.

Later in the year in October Harry added another trophy to his collection by winning the young stockman competition at Stirling. Also in July, Norman Smith and his wife Margaret travelled many miles judging the herd competition finishing up at our farm on the 25th where we held the presentation of the prizes and had a hog roast and barbeque . The weather was kind and a great day was had by all. Many thanks to everyone who helped on the day and especially to Norman and Margaret for judging the competition.













Our last meeting was at the Greyhound inn in October which was the judging of the video competition. Always a good social night and enjoyed by everyone. Thanks to Jack and Jackie Smith for their hard work and doing such a professional job.

2010 video competition results








Our last get together was the Primestock show at Stafford where the Midland club provided the stand and refreshments for members and potential customers and later on the Sunday we held the AGM.

To finish I would like to thank Mandy for all her hard work during the year as usual everything ran like a well oiled clock and wish everyone good luck for the coming show and sale season.

Midlands Club report 2009


by Andrew Leedham

Our year began in February with a dinner and presentation of last year’s herd competition awards. It was good to catch up with everyone and look forward to the coming show season, Rob Fitton was Chairman but informed us that he had taken a position as manager of a large beef herd in the borders and so I was promoted a little sooner than I was expecting. We all wish Rob, Louise and family the best of luck in the future.

Following a successful bull sales at Perth we held a quiz at the Greyhound Inn, once again David Bell and his fellow Centre West team mates came out on top. I think some sort of handicap system might have to be considered for the future!! Thanks to Chris and Kath Martindale for supplying the questions and acting as quiz master and scorer.

Moving into May, Jack and Jackie Smith visited various farms who had entered the video competition to be judged by members later in the year.

The last Royal Show was well supported by Midland Club members, many picking up top prizes in the breed classes too many to mention them all but congratulations to Jimmy and Vicky Woods with Popes Nellys Princess and Popes Princess Victoria being part of the victorious group of five, Dan and Rob Evans Reserve in the Beef breeder class with Wroxall Wallace and Giles and Mandy Green with Greenfields Viper, Reserve Male in the breed class. Also well done to junior club members Felicity Hill and Jenny Bennet on their 3rd place in the under 21 stock judging.

Some of prize winners of 2009 herd competition

In July we held our herd competition with John Carter and his wife Maureen kindly coming over from Norfolk to judge. This year we had a new format with the judging being held over four days finishing with a results and presentation dinner at the last farm, home of David and Sue Donnelly. I think everyone agreed this was one of the most enjoyable dinners we have had for years. Many thanks to David and Sue for being such marvellous hosts, the food and drink flowed all afternoon. Congratulations also to David on your appointment to Council.

Results of Herd Competition Large Herd: Joe Ede (FOLE) Medium Herd: Andrew and Yvonne Leedham (GRANGEWOOD) Small Herd: David and Sue Donnelly (ATLOW) Best Group of Maiden Heifers: Giles Green (GREENFIELDS) Best Group of in calf Heifers: Terry Ford (SHEBDON) Best Bull born after June 1st 2008: David and Sue Donnelly (ATLOW WEETABIX) Best Calf at foot born in 2009: Chris and Kath Martindale (FORSDALE ASTER Best Cow Family: David and Sue Donnelly (VALENTINE FAMILY) Overall Herd: Andrew and Yvonne Leedham (GRANGEWOOD) Reserve Overall: Giles, Mandy and Richard Green (GREENFIELDS) Judges Special Award: Mr J Mee

In August Hugo Arnold kindly invited us to visit the Hockenhull Herd before the dispersal in September. This was well attended, a great opportunity to see this wonderful herd for the last time. The sale was a memorable occasion - a once in a lifetime spectacle, the quality of the cattle and the prices achieved will not be matched for many years. We all wish Hugo, Geraldine and James all the best for the future.

Results of the video competition CLASS 1 INTERMEDIATE PEDIGREE FEMALE 1st Chadston Tollies Delight 5th (Female and Overall Champion) - (Barry Chadwick) 2nd Chadston Monicas Dream 4th - (Barry Chadwick) 3rd Pasturefields Princess Versace - (Rodger Birch)CLASS 2 JUNIOR PEDIGREE FEMALE 1st Greenfields Wonder - (Giles Green) 2nd Wroxall Warmhearted Vastina - (Dan And Rob Evans) 3rd Forsdale Willow - (Chris and Kath Martindale)

CLASS 3 INTERMEDIATE MALE 1st Wroxall Wallace (Male Champion) - (Dan and Rob Evans) 2nd Blackpool Wyatt - (D Loftus) 3rd Pasturefields Woger - (Roger Birch)

CLASS 4 JUNIOR PEDIGREE MALE 1st Wroxall Westend - (Dan and Rob Evans) 2nd Blackpool Wilfred - (D Loftus) 3rd Grangewood William - (Andrew and Yvonne Leedham)

We were back at the Greyhound Inn in October for the judging of the video competition, glad to see more entries this year. Top honours went to Barry Chadwick with Chadston Tollies Delight 5th who has also had a very successful show season. I don’t know how you find the time Barry with all those nappies to change!! Congratulations to you and Sally on the birth of your daughter Evie.

The Perth bull sales at its new venue were again successful with averages up and most bulls finding homes. From the Midland Club, Wroxall Wallace continued his show form becoming Reserve Senior Champion, Hugo Arnold achieved the highest price (16000gns) and our bull Grangewood William was the 3rd highest price (11000gns).

November was fatstock time again with the Midland Cub members hosting a stand at the Winter Fair at Bingley Hall Stafford. We are once again grateful to Terry Ford for his hard work sourcing the cattle for the stand. As usual it was a social get together for members and friends and followed by the AGM later in the afternoon on the Sunday.

To finish a big thank you must go to Mandy for all her hard work during the year organising the events and keeping everything running smoothly.

Midlands Club report 2008


by The Chairman

I was concerned that the Midland Club had had a very quiet year and that my report would be very short and sweet but when I look back and reflect on the year it’s actually been quite a busy one.

January the Midland Breeders Club quiz teams travelled away to visit Moreton Hall where the Centre West Club hosted a quiz night. Giles’ Midland Club 1 team (Mandy, Richard, Chris & Kath) triumphed over the remaining sub standard twenty other teams!

Nice to see the Simmentals winning the first inter breed competition of the year, and not a blue tongue in sight! In March it was our turn to host a quiz night at the Greyhound in Yarlet. Thanks must go to our ‘quiz master’ Chris and ‘scores on the doors’ Kath Martindale who kept order. They also managed to ask all the right questions for the Centre West Team, led by David Bell and his fellow egg heads, retained their Champions trophy for the third year in a row!

May saw the youngsters gather at Wroxall for a Stock judging practice to steer them in the right direction for the main event at the Royal Show. Master judge David Bell tutored the youngsters with his fountain of knowledge.

June another busy month for the various club members involved with entertaining the international visitors attending the 17th World Simmental Congress. This was a great chance for the breeders to make friends and business contacts on the World Simmental Stage. It was a shame more members did not take advantage of this opportunity.

Large Herd – Hugo Arnold (Hockenhull)

Medium Herd – Giles, Mandy & Richard Green (Greenfields)

Small Herd – Jimmy & Vikki Wood (Popes)

Overall Winner – Hugo Arnold (Hockenhull)

Peter Burgess from Tilbrook Simmentals was the judge of this year’s Herd Competition and thanks to all who entered and congratulations to the winners. The Midland Club members were again on duty at this year’s Dairy Event with Terry Ford sourcing the cattle for the stand and manning it for most of the event with Fiona Sloan, thanks Terry.

This years Herd Visit saw the club venture over to Bill Adams, cross bred Simmental Herd and Peter and Sarah Burgess’ Pedigree Simmental Herd in Northamptonshire. A very informative day with something for everyone, top commercial Simmental cows producing exceptional cross bred calves for the Dovecote Park Scheme were seen at Bill Adams.

This was followed by a superb, if not very wet, walk around the Tilbrook herd in the afternoon viewing some exceptional Simmentals.

The day was finished off with a fantastic banquet produced by Sarah with scrumptious puddings produced by Rosie and Alfie. Many thanks to all those involved in the day, Bill Adams, his stockman Ed Dudley and his wife and son, and also to the whole Burgess family.

November saw the members working tirelessly again at the Winter Fair at Bingley Hall. Terry Ford had again sourced some pedigree display cattle, a cow and calf from Steve White (Tirley) and a home bred bull from his Shebdon herd with the stand running along the “weight for age” theme. A successful show with most members meeting on the Sunday for the club’s AGM.

Winners of the Video Competition were Class 1 Males born 1/8/06 to 31/12/06 1st Wroxall Timekeeper 2nd Wroxall Tradition 3rd Blackpool Tower

Class 2 Males born 0/1/07 to 31/05/07 1st Greenfields Valiant also Overall & Male Champion 2nd Greenfields Viper 3rd New Trend Viking

Class 3 Females born 1/8/06 to 31/12/06 1st Grangewood Twinkle also Female Champion 2nd Grangewood Tanya 3rd Blackpool Treasure

Class 4 Females born 1/1/07 to 31/05/07 1st Greenfields Viola 2nd Grangewood Vanity 3rd Blackpool Virtue

Late November we held our Video Competition which was a great way to see everyone’s cattle in their natural surrounding at home. I felt this was a novel way to promote the breed. On the evening club members and guests gathered around a big screen to watch and judge the cattle parade in the videos. Four classes to judge, so armed with our score sheets and pens we all judged the classes before us. Of course we were all right!! Many thanks to Jack and Jackie Smith for organising/videoing and running the event and to all the doubters I hope you enjoyed the evening and feel encouraged to get involved this next year.

This just leaves me to thank my fellow officers of the club. To our accounts department Bill Turrell and his driver Liz for keeping the financial books in order. To Terry Ford for driving up and down and around and around the M6 to source cattle for both the Dairy Event and The Prime Stock Show, sorry Winter Fair! and also for finding the sponsor for the Winter Fair in ‘Eccleshall Fencing’.

Finally my biggest THANK YOU has to go to Mandy Green our Club Secretary without whom I’m sure we would not have a club. Mandy works tirelessly ringing round members, organising events, ringing around members again, booking events and ringing around members again….. I feel we all owe it to Mandy for making the club what it is today and so Thank you Mandy, we all appreciate what you do, even though we don’t all show it!!!!

Midlands Club report 2007


By Rob Evans

The Midland Club started off it’s 2007 campaign with a very upbeat and pro active talk by Mr Henry Lewis from The British Livestock Genetics Consortium on the export markets. He explained in detail the opportunities and pitfalls of exporting cattle and the help available to us all. As a direct response to Henry’s hard work we were informed of marketing opportunity for Simmental into Poland, which is currently on hold due to ‘Blue Tongue’ restrictions.

Our spring meeting was a quiz night held at the Greyhound Country Inn at Yarlet (the new venue for club meetings). I would like to thank all the visiting teams, especially the students from Harper Adams and the ‘Egg Heads’ from the Centre West Club who for about the third year running won the competition.

This year’s summer farm walk saw the club visit Stuart Shrive and Family’s ‘Brigstock’ Simmental herd in Kettering Northampton. Twenty members ventured over to sample the fine hospitality and setting offered by the Shrive family and enjoy an afternoon browsing around the herd. I would like to thank the visiting members who raised £75 on the day for Stuart’s chosen charity, Cancer Research.

Herd visit to the Shrive family’s Brigstock herd.

Mention too must go to Jimmy and Vikki Woods on their successful showing season culminating in a win at the Royal Show with their cow “Popes Nellys Princess”, congratulations also to Robert Heaps their stockman.

Our herd competition this year was judged by John Trafford and I would like to thank him for making it to judge the Wroxall herd before we had to make the decision to call the whole thing off due to ‘Foot and Mouth’ and therefore one obvious winner!!!!

The club’s autumn meeting was a talk by Jack and Jackie Smith explaining how a video competition would work. The club plans to hold one early in the New Year - Foot and Mouth and Blue Tongue won’t stop us admiring each others cattle!

For the umpteenth year Mandy, our club secretary, has rallied us all round and steered the club with seemingly endless enthusiasm and my thanks go to her for all her hard work and support.

Our newest member to the club is Callum Leedham who was born back in October – Congratulations to Andrew and Yvonne. And so the year rolls to an end, with all the disappointments and frustrations of cattle farming behind us, we look forward to the New Year and wonder what trials and tribulations 2008 will hold.

With the British hosting The Simmental World Congress we must keep our chins up and show the world why there is a ‘Great’ in Britain.

Midlands Club report 2006


By Joe Ede

My year as Chairman started when I was elected at the AGM of the Midland Simmental Club held during the Staffordshire and Birmingham Agricultural Society National Primestock Show in November 2005, Rob Evans was elected as Vice- Chairman and all other officers remained as before.

In December 2005 the club lost a very loyal member, Peter Hill. Peter had been a very active member of our club for several years. He was a keen showman, winning many prizes with his stock. He is sadly missed.

Perth sale, as usual, dominated the month of February for us. Congratulations must be extended to all of those members who exhibited and successfully sold their stock.

March saw a meeting at the Society office; I attended along with about thirty other members to discuss marketing and sale venues. After much deliberation, Market Drayton, Shropshire and Thirsk, Yorkshire were adopted.

The Midland Club was responsible for the sale at Market Drayton held on April 22nd. My thanks go to David Lowry our Judge and to Roger Birch who presented the club with a Perpetual Trophy to be awarded to the Champion Female.

The Moat House, Acton Trussell was the venue for our April meeting. The club discussed the forthcoming sales at Ludlow and Market Drayton, and the February report from Council. Robert Fitton and Boomer Birch gave an account of their enjoyable and rewarding trip to Canada.

May saw us back at the Moat House for our annual quiz. The Charolais Breeders Club, Centre West Simmental Club and Harper Adams also fielded teams. The Centre West Club were triumphant.

Also in May, Bristol Sales Centre again hosted the spring sale. Bob and Christine Farmer dispersed their Highcroft herd very successfully. They have both worked quietly and tirelessly for the Simmental breed. Bob joined as a member of the Society in 1986, and has been a long standing member of our club. We wish them both a long and happy retirement.

In June we had a wonderful day hosted by Jimmy and Vicki Wood. We saw some wonderful cattle on the farm walk and Robert Fitton was the Master Judge for the Junior Stockjudging. Our thanks are extended to both our hosts and judge.

Our herd competition was held in July, Dorothy Moffat took on the onerous task of judging, a very large undertaking, and we thank her for all her time and effort.

Results of the herd competition 2006:- Large Herd 1. Hugo Arnold (Hockenhull) 2. Dan & Rob Evans (Wroxall) 3. Terry Ford (Shebdon)

Medium Herd 1. A & Y Leedham (Grangewood) 2. Giles Green (Greenfields) 3. The Late Peter Hill (Scotland)

Small Herd 1. Jimmy & Vicki Wood (Popes) 2. Barry Chadwick (Chadston) 3. David Donnelly (Atlow)

Best Cow Family Hugo Arnold (Girlie)

Best Young Bull Popes Strongbow (Jimmy & Vicki Wood)

Best Group of Maiden Heifers A & Y Leedham (Grangewood)

Best Group of In Calf Heifers Hugo Arnold (Hockenhull)

Overall Herd Hugo Arnold (Hockenhull)

Reserve Overall Jimmy & Vicki Wood (Popes)

Best Calf at Foot Born in 2006 Chadston Tremendous (Barry Chadwick)

Judges Special Awards Barry Chadwick & Richard Green

A beautiful sunny day saw us in Wales for three herd visits. Firstly we visited Gwyndaf Evans and Wynn Jenkins. Followed by Aled Davies and finally to Nick and Nadia Gwynne. The hospitality throughout the day was marvellous and thanks go to all concerned.

Our dinner was once again held at the Staffordshire Showground in October. A good night was had by all. Dorothy was on hand to present the herd competition prizes. There were two judges special prizes this year, Barry Chadwick was awarded a special prize for the most consistent herd for the second year running, and Richard Green was awarded a special prize for his knowledge of cattle and best young bull although this bull was unfortunately too old for the judging category. Congratulations to everybody who took part in the competition.

At the Staffordshire and Birmingham Agricultural Society Primestock show again. Our club always has a fantastic stand, where members and friends can meet the large amount of commercial customers who also visit the stand for refreshments.

Midland Simmental stand at Bingley Hall

I would like to thank all committee members and especially Mandy for all their hard work and support over the last twelve months.

Midlands Club report 2005


By Vikki Wood

Here we are at the end of another busy MIdlands Club year and also at the end of my duties as Chairman of the MIdlands Club. The old saying “Time flies when you are having fun” is suitably appropriate!

Our first meeting in March was a quiz evening against the Centre West Club. We had a very enjoyable evening although unfortunately we were defeated by the visiting team.

In April David Meakins from Scherring Plough came to talk to us about Bovine Respiratory Disease. The evening was informative and well attended.

Our Junior Stock judges were out in force for our visit to Peter Hill’s Scotland herd in May, for a training day with David Bell acting as master judge.

Robert Fitton won the Senior class and Harry Wood the Junior class. Both juniors and seniors enjoyed the day and hopefully came away with some useful strategies to put into practice. Thank you to Peter and his team and to Mandy and Norma for providing refreshments and thank you to David Bell for giving up his time to encourage our juniors.

July saw us making the journey to Warwickshire to visit the Wroxall herd. The weather did its worst but did not manage to dampen spirits and we were transported by tractor and trailer to see the Evans family’s lovely herd. We returned to a much welcome lunch and our thanks go to Dan, Sheila, Rob, Sam and Stockman Matt Harris for their wonderful hospitality. Thank you all.

During the summer months club members were out in force yet again flying the flag for the Simmental and MIdlands Club. Large and small shows were once again well supported and it is always nice to see familiar faces as well as new ones. Well done to everybody for supporting and promoting our breed.

In August Tony and Phillida Hurn made the journey from Norfolk to judge our Herds Competition. This is a huge undertaking as we cover a very large area from Lancashire in the North to Warwickshire. Thank you very much to Tony and Phillida for giving their time to judge the competition and we look forward to seeing them at our Dinner on 4th March 2006 at Staffordshire County Showground, when they will make their presentation. Results were as table below.

Members who made the journey to Perth in October for the Bull Sales met with a selective trade. However Roger and Steffi Birch enjoyed a good show and sale, Well Done!

As I write my report Rob Fitton and Boomer Birch are preparing to leave for Canada. I hope that they have an enjoyable trip and bring back lots of information and ideas to share with us at our next meeting!

My two years in office ends at our Annual General Meeting on 20th November when Joe Ede will take over as Chairman. I would like to wish him well in his new position. Thank you also to Chris Martindale who came off Council this year. Chris works tirelessly for our breed both at Council and Club level and has been a great asset to our breed.

Thank you also to Mandy Green, Chris Martindale, Bill Turrell, Terry Ford and the rest of the Committee for all their help and support throughout the year.

Finally I would like to wish everybody a healthy, happy and successful 2006.

Large Herd 1. J Ede – Fole 2. J & V Wood – Popes 3. D & R Evans – Wroxall

Medium Herd 1. Peter Hill – Scotland 2. A & Y Leedham – Grangewood 3. T Ford – Shebdon

Small Herd 1. C & K Martindale – Forsdale 2. G Green – Greenfields 3. D & S Donnelly – Atlow

In Calf Heifers D & R Evans – Wroxall

Maiden Heifer T Ford – Shebdon

Best Bull Calf Born after 01.06.04 P Hill - Scotland

Best Calf at Foot J & V Wood – Popes

Best Cow Family J & V Wood – Popes

Judges Special Award (To be presented at Dinner on 4th March 2006)

Overall Herd J Ede – Fole

Reserve C & K Martindale – Forsdale