THE dispersal sale of the entire Ribble Aberdeen-Angus pedigree herd from Henry Rowntree, of Gisburn, was deemed a runaway success at Skipton mart on Saturday.

Conducted jointly by Craven Cattle Marts and United Auctions of Stirling, it was one of the biggest dispersals of Aberdeen-Angus cattle ever staged in the UK.

The 390 head comprised 157 cow and calf outfits, two in-calf cows, 40 in-calf heifers, 26 heifers and seven bulls.

The sale attracted 57 buyers from across the UK and Belgium and achieved a joint top call of 7,500gns for a heifer and calf, and one of the bulls.

The heifer was the March, 2016, Ribble Black Belinda S489, by Ribble Euston L544, out of Black Belinda N093. Her March-born heifer calf, Black Belinda U793, has since run with Fordel Bishop Monkton T780. The pair sold to J&T MacFarlane, of Berwickshire.

The joint top price bull was five-year-old Ribble Eritrean N031, by Fordel Enniskillen, out of Ribble Elka G030. He sold to WT Jones, of Gwynedd.

Another young bull selling for 7,000gns was the March, 2017, Fordel Bishop Monkton, bred by Dinar Estate Management, before joining the Ribble herd. He sold to Slawston Grange Estate, South Leicestershire.

Two further bulls both made 6,000gns. Three-year-old Rulesmains Jimo Eric R666 sold to J Doyle, of Co Tyrone, while two year-old Ribble Martin Porres S435, sold locally to Addingham’s Max Holmes.

Pedigree bulls averaged £5,250 and the pedigree cow and calf section averaged £3,596.

Top price here was 6,500gns for the September, 2013, Ribble Pride N162, by Blelack Lord Hancock, out of Ribble Pride K488. With her April-born female calf, Ribble Pride U875, an Eritrean daughter, they joined AR Bell, of Hawick.

In-calf heifers averaged £2,428, peaking at 2,900gns for the May, 2017, Ribble Equidora T727, out of Equidora M750. She sold to W&AM Aitken.

Pedigree heifers averaged £1,558, selling to joint tops of 2,200gns for a brace of Black Burn daughters. The March, 2017, Ribble Lady Jane T672, sold to WT Jones while the June, 2017, Ribble Passionetta T776, sold to AR&HE Cox of Ripon.

Of the two in-calf cows, best on price at 2,200gns was five-year-old Ribble Elize N007. Run with Fordel Bishop Monkton, she sold to CN&SA Harrison, of Elslack.

Barrie Turner, Aberdeen-Angus Cattle Society chief executive, said: One of the biggest sales that the Aberdeen-Angus breed has seen in recent years has been a reflection of two things that we are seeing going forward.

“Firstly is the recognition of really good breeding, with Henry Rowntree focusing on the figures to produce animals in the top percentiles of the Breedplan EBVs without taking an eye off the animal itself. The sale averages reflect this policy.

“Secondly, the recognition that the Aberdeen-Angus as a breed are very much on the up, as beef producers look to adapt to both market conditions and ease of management, and bring more focus on to the economics of production by engaging with the breed and the brand to ensure a sustainable and profitable enterprise."

A new sale of Aberdeen-Angus females will be held at Skipton on Wednesday, November 7, alongside the Beef Shorhorn Society’s annual show and sale of pedigree bulls and females.