The Arable competition has been a firm fixture at Penrith Show for many years, but entries are seldom seen by anyone other than the farmer and the judge.
Crop judging takes place in advance of the show and always has a strong entry – this year is no different.
There were almost 40 entries across the seven classes in this year’s virtual show which feature spring and winter barley and wheat, root crops, maize and a catch all cereal category.
Like many show classes, entries were slow at first with a flurry at the end. The task of judging the crops fell to Mr Stephen Hemingway – a retired Agronomist from Aspatria Farmers. He was accompanied by Penrith Show Chief Steward, Chris Wilson.
Commenting on the crops Mr Hemmingway said “The quality of the crops was very good, especially considering the hot dry spring which made it difficult to establish spring sown crops, particularly with the lighter soils around the Penrith area. Winter Barleys were especially affected as the dry weather coincided with the main growth period.”
The Best Managed Crop Overall, and winners of the O’Reilly Diamond Jubilee Perpetual Trophy were Alan and Ben Taylor from Plumpton Old Hall. Judge Mr Hemmingway said, “In my Opinion the best overall crop was the Spring Beans entered by the Taylor’s, Old Hall, Plumpton – it was Outstanding!”
Receiving the trophy, Ben Taylor said “We have scaled back our contracting business to enable us to do more farming. This is the first time we have grown beans and we’re grateful to Steven Gate from Agrovista for his advice and support. So far, the crop is looking good and we’re able to explore a variety of potential markets.
“We were encouraged by fellow farming neighbour Hugh Lowthian to have a go at Penrith Show’s arable competition – so it was fantastic to win the trophy in our first year.”
The main category sponsor of the arable competition was Penrith Building Society with a leading supplier of agronomy advice Agrovista providing sponsorship in 2 classes.
Class 1 – Best Winter Sown Barley
1st-Mark Holliday, Town Head Farm Langwathby. 2nd-Robert Lyle, Staingills. 3rd- Hugh Lowthian, West Brownrigg.
Class 2 – Best Spring Sown Barley
1st- Mark Holliday, Town Head Farm. 2nd- Robert Lyle, Staingills. 3rd- Chris Wilson, Skirwith Hall.
Class 3 – Best Winter Sown Wheat sponsored by Agrovista
1st- James Todd, Newton Rigg. 2nd- Chris Wilson, Skirwith Hall. 3rd- Joe Taylor, Low Howgill.
Class 4 – Best Spring Sown Wheat
1st- Chris Wilson, Skirwith Hall
Class 5 – Best Roots Crop
1st- Chris Wilson, Skirwith Hall. 2nd- Mark Holliday, Town Head Farm. 3rd- James Todd, Newton Rigg.
Class 6 – Best Maize under Plastic Sown Crop sponsored by Agrovista
1st- Martyn Lyall, High Oaks. 2nd- Chris Wilson, Skirwith Hall. 3rd Scott Grierson, Skelton.
Class 7 – Best Any Other Cereal Crop
1st- A & B Taylor Contracting , Plumpton Old Hall. 2nd- M/s Fisher, Yanwath Wood House. 3rd- Joe Taylor, Low Howgill.
The O’Reilly Diamond Jubilee Perpetual Trophy was awarded for the Best Managed Overall Crop – the Spring Beans from A & B Taylor Contracting at Plumpton Old Hall.