ANDREW Walton has been appointed chairman of Glendale Agricultural Society (GAS).

A well-known local auctioneer and previous head of livestock at Glendale Show, he is part of the third generation of the renowned Suffolk Sheep breeders, J Walton and Son – established by his grandfather Joe in 1937, selling rams to a top of 11,000 Guineas (Roseden Special Blend) in 1982.

He was brought up on the family farm under the guidance of his also famous father, Michael, at Roseden, near Wooler, and took up his first tenancy at Wandylaw near Alnwick in 1987, establishing flocks of Blackface Sheep.

Today he farms at Preston Mains and Rock where his sheep farming enterprise comprises 900+ ewes, with flocks of purebred Texels, Suffolks and Blue Faced Leicesters, and Suffolk and Texel Cross Ewes as a closed flock for new stock rams. All stock is sold through Acklington Mart, live weight, with rams going to Kelso Ram Sales.

Mr Walton has never missed a single Glendale Show in his life.

He said: "There are many events competing for the same audiences, however we remain firm to our roots, ensuring farming and agriculture remains at the show’s hearts and I am pleased to say that the thousands of people who attend every year must agree with me. We have a very strong following from both sides of the border and many travel from the North East for what they know is a tremendous showcase of rural life."