Trade Talk - Katie Davies and Jenny Layton Mills, Knighton Market, McCartneys LLP
17th August 2020
Knighton market, located in Wales, yet overlooking the rolling Shropshire hills, is a little different to most in that it is two ladies who undertake the majority of the auctioneering, McCartneys partners Jenny Layton Mills and Katie Davies.
“We are very fortunate to have the opportunity to sell good quality homebred sheep and cattle,” they comment.
Jenny says, “Trade on the finished lambs is the best I’ve ever known for August averaging 222ppk today. This is 33ppk above last year’s average on the same day, and around £10 a head more.
Katie adds, “We have had some large cull ewe entries in the run up to Eid which have seen high demand. It has been very pleasing to see a strong demand continue after this date. It is noticeable that leaner, grazing sorts are wanted. You have to ask is it worthwhile trying to gain finish on ewes, or sell them leaner now to take advantage of good demand.
“The store lamb trade is flying. We don’t usually start autumn sales until September, however this year we are starting on 21st August with up-country vendors wanting to sell lambs off grass, and take advantage of the strong demand from finishers who have plenty of keep available,” says Katie. “We are now looking forward to a busy autumn of store and breeding sheep sales.”
Jenny says, “There’s been a fantastic trade right through lockdown for store cattle, with a better end beef price. Knighton has always had a reputation of selling great quality cattle, but we are now finding we have buyers for the second and third quality too, which will help numbers. Last sale the steers averaged 216ppk, heifers 215ppk and young feeding bulls 218ppk.”
Knighton is not only ‘girl power’ though. Jenny and Katie are training 20-year-old Lloyd Humphreys, who is a great asset to the team. Lloyd has started an excellent monthly sale of cull cows. Last month the cows averaged 148ppk and £917 per head, selling to £1350 per head.
Jenny and Katie add, “We realise that we have an old-fashioned market, but with very modern thinking and attention to detail, Knighton has a great future.”