AS we look forward to the autumn sales David Bowman, Mart Manger at Hopes Auction in Wigton provides a review of the sales so far and those coming forward through the Autumn. David said: “While 2020 has certainly been a difficult year, we can reflect on the benefits of the live auction system, with the live ring producing excellent returns for all classes of stock throughout the spring and summer. "Primestock returns have and are at levels not normally associated with the time of year and lambs particularly are trading £10-£15 in front of last year. "The rise in finished stock prices has produced confidence in the store markets with returns for cattle and sheep very pleasing. Cattle numbers forward at Wigton are markedly up as clients have taken advantage of this strong trade. "The August show and sale of store cattle at Wigton is a notable date across the country and again this year was no different, a strong catalogue of quality and numbers attracting several new faces to the ring to compete with established purchasers and a super trade throughout. "Of note on the year was the fantastic show of bulls forward with a very notable lift in prices from last year, Messrs Harryman, Keskadale showing an exceptional run of bulls to £1675, Wigton proving yet again to be the venue to market stock. "Store cattle were good to sell from the outset and buyers keen for all classes, increasing trade on the year by £130. "Strong cattle topping at £1475 for JJ & J Benson & Sons, Kirkland Hall, whose run averaged £1436. Heifers to £1435 for Messrs Dixon, Bankhead. Younger cattle forward with quality and with a trade to match. "Breeding sheep sales are now in focus and our early sale at the end of July produced a super trade with buyers keen to replenish stocks and obtain ewes to supply the early lamb markets. "September promises to be another busy month as in addition to our usual sales we look forward to the Wigton Whites Sale of 4000 continental breeding sheep on September12 and our Mule Ewe Lamb Sale on September 16 which this year will see a new fixture in the sale catalogue and be followed by our second sale of tups. "Meanwhile, the company is pleased to announce that during mid-August Rory Livesey has joined the team as the junior livestock auctioneer supporting David Bowman. "Rory joins us from Aberdeen & Northern Marts where he has worked for the previous six years selling store cattle and running a Highland Lamb Marketing Scheme. "Rory qualified to the Institute of Auctioneers and Arbitrators in Scotland (IAAS) in 2017 and was awarded the top Scottish Student of the Year Award. "Prior to joining Aberdeen & Northern Marts he worked for two years at Acklington Mart in Northumberland and spent a summer working in New Zealand and Australia. "Rory and his wife Kim will shortly be relocating to the area." David Bowman said on the appointment “We are delighted that Rory has joined the team, his enthusiasm for auctioneering is excellent, we hope he will continue the great work done by the team in recent years to increase sales through the ring here at Wigton.” For an on-farm meeting Rory can be contacted on 07827 966377.