AFTER 100 years in business, Leyburn Livestock Auction Mart Company Limited celebrated this milestone with a Centenary Open Day.

A large number of shareholders, customers and friends gathered to mark the occasion on Friday, June 29.

Proceedings started at 2.30pm, following the weekly rearing calf sale, with a number of trade stands in place and a sheep-shearing competition for all ages organised by Rod Marsh and keenly watched by an enthusiastic audience.

Stock judging progressed through the afternoon with nearly 100 entrants judging beef store cattle, prime lambs and Swaledale gimmer lambs with regular customer and friend to the mart, Dennis Thwaites, from Kirkby Stephen, being the master judge.

By 5pm, the sale ring was packed to the rafters as the auction of promises got underway. Auctioneers Stephen Walker and Jack Pickup had no problem placing more than 100 lots to a crowd of generous bidders who paid well over the odds for many lots ranging from a day’s pheasant shooting, sheep scanning and shearing, dry stone walling to holiday accommodation, fodder, fishing, logs, food and drink hampers, stable visits and days at the races.

The prices paid for the many vouchers from local shops, pubs and restaurants exceeded their face value. Some of the more sought after lots were a VIP taxi ride in a Lancaster Bomber, which made £500, and £130 for the company of Ken and Rob Fawcett in an All You Can Drink during ‘happy hour’ at the Bolton Arms, Redmire.

The entertainment continued into the evening with the band 1two3four providing music and a bar selling ‘auction ale’ kept everyone happy.

Beneficiaries of the £21,000 raised were the Great North Air Ambulance and the Yorkshire Air Ambulance. Included in this figure was £3,400 gathered together by office girls, Rachael and Debbie, following sponsorship of their 10,000 feet tandem skydive.