Regional Contact Member – Peter Gorringe

Hopefully we will have a flock competition in October if we get enough people to enter and an open day and AGM with flock competition results in November so enter the flock competition as it is great fun

Autumn is coming up quickly and the show season is in full swing. Kent County Show went very well with lots competitors. Wendy Sharp was one of the new people showing and she written a little article about her weekend:

What a feeling, four rosettes in all the colours. We didn’t expect that, and it made the hard work all worthwhile. We had arrived at the Kent County Show Ground with our clean, and I thought ‘well behaved‘ Jacob sheep. This was the first time at the show as a competitor, and not as a helper, and we were feeling quite rough round the edges. For two weeks we had been taming and halter training these seven sheep, and we were not confident they were ready, a feeling made worse when one of our shearling ewes jumped out of her pen into another, as apparently, “her friend” was in that pen. So reinforcing of the boundary hurdles was required.

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Other competitors arrived all afternoon, with a final flury at tea time Thursday evening. There was a good representation of Jacob sheep, which was lovely to see as the existence of their class was at risk if the numbers were not high enough. We slept overnight in the livestock camping field, so were at the sheep lines by seven in the morning. Our class was the first in the ring, so we had to forfeit the stockman’s breakfast, and make haste preparing for our classes. Combs, clippers, sponges and halters all appeared with the camaraderie between my lovely team, in the pens, and other teams, of Jacobs, and other breeds as well, all united in a common aim, to produce the best sheep on the show ground. All helping each other, making new friends and rejuvenating older friendships.

Wendy Sharp getting ready for showing at Kent County Show

We had entered all the Jacob classes except the first for the older rams. Once we got going, we didn’t stop, not much time between classes, leading sheep into the ring,then out, and changing over, then in the ring again for the next class. Second prize in shearling ram with Bruno, and a third with our lovely ram lamb, Ryan. Then a first, yes a red one, In the older ewe class, winning with our favourite ewe, Elsa. Then came the shearling ewes, and finally ewe lambs. Our showing skills were being seriously challenged at this point, as our “group of three” sheep, were a bit of a shambles, but we kept smiling, having fun and we learned a lot.

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The second day was for the young handlers, and we had a few of them, but we weren’t sure if they would actually go in the ring or go shy on us. Well, all our youngsters decided to compete, all six of them. So there was a mad rush to get them ready for the ring, a mix and match of white coats and ties of various shapes and sizes were swopped across the sheep pens, so everyone could look their best. I am told that they all did really well in huge classes, and from the photos it certainly looked that way with all competitors receiving a rosette, and some feedback from the judge. Well done to you all. The children in the Sharps Sheep Teams all participated in camping on the show ground, and enjoyed the disco put on by the show organisers. And it is something special to be able to walk the animal lines at dusk, hearing them chewing the cud and settled in their beds after the crowns have gone home. Fun had been had by all, a show to remember… until the next time.

The Gorringe Family’s champion and reserve champion sheep at the Kent County Show with the judge, Peter Bull.


August 2023

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