Finished hoggets - 4,543 sold A big entry met a strong trade throughout with overall averages comparing favourably with national figures. Despite this large entry, prices held up well to the end of the sale with buyers competing strongly in an attempt to fulfil orders. While the small number of lightweight hoggets (36-38kg) sold attracted prices around the £45 mark, the majority of the others sold in the £50£60 bracket and up to £60.20 (140p per kg) for 43kg Texel Crosses from L. Stevens and son. Hogget averages: light 65 121.88 to 115.25 (116.48, nat ave 110.40); standard 1,171 130.30 to 105.45 (120.72, nat ave 116.30); medium 2,077 140.00 to 100.00 (120.24, nat ave 118.80); heavy 1,018 120.85 to 93.00 (112.88, nat ave 111.00); over-weight 212 112.15 to 69.71 (105.05). Store hoggets and breeding sheep - 734 sold An exceptional trade with a run of 208 Suffolk Cross mules from H.J. Hecks and son topping at £49.10 (ave £45.44); Crossbreds to £45.20 from I. Hobden; and relatively small Texel Crosses looking very well sold at £44 from A.Sherazee. Cull ewes and rams - 595 sold Despite the reduced numbers there was no improvement in the trade and the overall prices were similar to recent weeks. Texel Cross ewes took the pick up to £48 from J.and M. Lampshire; Suffolk Crosses made to £45 from C.and J. Georgetti; Romneys to £37 from DJK. Miles and mules to £30.80 from Kerr Farms. Cull ewe: first quality 171 48.00 to 37.00 (40.64); second quality 270 36.50 to 28.00 (32.80); third quality 124 27.00 to 2.00 (22.00). Rams: 30 48.00 to 3.00 (31.70). Finished cattle - 158 steers/heifers and six young bulls sold The strongest entry this year with good runs of decent cattle and very heavy sorts with 14 individual buyers on hand seeing trade very fair right through and very competitive. Of the 14 buyers, seven were looking specifically for under-24-month and again these were a sharp demand. A 23-month 535kg Limousin steer from C.J. Bean and son at 134.5p went to E.C. Wilkes and son (Cranbrook); a 615kg Belgian Blue heifer from M.B. Farms 136.5p to Anglo Dutch Meats (Charing) and a 675kg steer made 142.5p to the same buyer grossing £961 at 20months. In the supermarket lines, Mark Scott’s 715kg Simmental 110.5p; Paul Burden’s 775kg Charolais 108.5p; and an 870kg Charolais from J. Batchelor 102.5p while the lighter sorts were between 110-118p. Lean breaking up cattle also well sold again - P grade Holsteins to 88.5p and grossing to £634 - these must have earned money! Feeders and graziers were also looking for cattle with decent steers and heifers to 115p and old plain cattle 70-80p to face the OTM trade in the autumn. Just a small entry of bulls with nothing out of the top drawer. But heavyweight 18-month South Devon’s made to 96.5p and Keith Axell’s 16month O plus grade Limousin 102.5p. Finished cattle averages, steers: premium 38 134.50 to 108.50 (115.50); average 41 109.50 to 97.50 (104.00); others 14 93.50 to 65.50 (81.00). Heifers: premium 27 142.50 to 109.50 (115.50); average 32 108.50 to 96.50 (103.50); others 6 96.50 to 79.50 (92.00). Young bulls: first quality 4 102.50 to 89.50 (95.50); third quality 2 69.50 to 46.50 (58.50). Over-30-month cattle for the food chain - 34 sold After 45 years of auctioning livestock, Mark Clevedon is still waiting for the trade to let me know if things should be dearer! Plenty of trade for the graziers now - six lean 2004 purebred Sussex bulls 55-65.5p; 2000 Sussex Cross Friesian cows to 67.5p; a very tidy 2003 Limousin cow 97.5p; and lean 2004 Simmental Cross Friesian steers to 79.5p.