We had sunshine, rain and wind for the first ever Fun Day! Back in early 2016 we were approached by Ryan Davies to see if we could help to re-establish the Clun Forest Sheep back in its native homeland. With an increasing number of new members to the Society we thought it ideal to introduce it as an event to encourage novice breeders and exhibitors to come along and have a go. It was a good turnout, from both exhibitors trying their hand at showing and also from society members turning up from near and far to support the event. Indeed, we welcomed friends from Berkshire, Brecon and Surrey.
To say many of the sheep had never been on a halter before, they were remarkably well-behaved! So, well done to the sheep and their handlers and a big thank you to Clive Meredith for judging. We hope we provided them with an appreciation of what to look for in a Clun, making sure they check for correct teeth and feet, tips for preparing their sheep and guide to etiquette in the show ring. Roy Reynolds was to be found going around the pens, trimming shears in hand, showing how it’s done and what a difference a little tweaking to the head and neck makes! They left, suitably armed with Mike Eckley's tips for preparing and showing their sheep, together with an official Clun Forest Sheep badge, rosettes and prize money donated by Brian and Ann Davies. We look forward to seeing these upcoming exhibitors in the show ring next year.
A raffle raised £166 (shared with Clun Memorial Hall) with some fantastic prizes being donated and I’m sure the winners of the reclining garden seats, single malt scotch and local beers, went home particularly pleased. Clun sheep merchandise was available to buy, but we’re now down to the last three Society ties and so we’re asking for your designs to be submitted for the next batch of ties.
We had a superb cookery demonstration from the renowned local chef Milly Rees using Clun lamb provided by our secretary, Sue. The samples disappeared so fast that some of us didn’t even get to taste them! Milly provided printed recipe sheets but her recipes are available to download from her website www.millysmenus.com/ You really will think of using lamb in a completely different way.
Sheltering from the downpours, we had an opportunity to look through the displays of flock books going back to the inception of the Society, catalogues from the Craven Arms sales of yesteryear and an awful lot of reminiscing over old photographs.
It was unanimously agreed that we had a good time, but most of all we would like to extend a huge thank you to everyone who was involved with the day in whatever capacity. There has been such a positive response that we feel encouraged to repeat it next year so, if you have any thoughts as to the type of thing you would like to see included please do get in touch.
Location: Clun Memorial Hall, Guilden Down, SY7 8NY
The event will be open to the public from 11.00 am onwards. For those bringing sheep, if you aim to arrive around 9.00 am it will allow sufficient time to unload the animals and get them settled. If you’re arriving with your stock the day before that’s not a problem. Just let us know and we can make the appropriate arrangements.
Classes are Stock Ram (any age); Ewe (any age); Lamb (either sex) and are to be shown untrimmed. There are no limits on the number of sheep you may bring but if you could let us know approximately how many it would be helpful when planning the pens.
Judging takes place at 12.00 noon and ideally will be conducted in the show ring. There will be plenty of support to help make the process as stress-free as possible. However, it will still be possible for your sheep to be judged in the pens if necessary.
You might wish to take advantage of the trimming demonstration and go home with a show prepped animal that you can then take to a local show later in August or indeed the sale in early September! Roy Reynolds, our President will be showing how it’s done.
Where will this fabulous breed take us next!