Home / Knowledge / News / Textiles / Masham breeder keeps flag flying for quality wool
Masham breeder keeps flag flying for quality wool
13
Oct '09
L - R Thomas Gorst and Margaret McVoy with a Teeswater sheep
L - R Thomas Gorst and Margaret McVoy with a Teeswater sheep
Teeswater wool is among the highest quality produced by any sheep breed in the UK, so it's no wonder that Cumbria breeder Margaret McVoy makes sure it's a trait she's keen to maintain in her pedigree flock at Mutton Farm, Killington, Kendal.

She's the third generation of the family to breed Teeswater sheep and is determined to see Teeswater tups retain their role as the sire of commercial Masham ewes – one reason why she also runs a flock of Dalesbred ewes to breed top quality Masham females.

Although a well-seasoned and successful exhibitor of Teeswater sheep, it's only in recent years that she has started to show fleeces. And it was a fleece from a Masham ewe bred at Mutton Hall that beat all-comers at Westmorland County Show in September and took the overall fleece championship.

Margaret, whose father Thomas Gorst has long been a renowned breeder of Teeswaters, has had her own Masham sheep from a very early age but set up her own Teeswater flock when she was 18. A few years ago Margaret also established a flock of Dalesbred ewes – there are now around 60 – to put to her own Teeswater tups to breed Mashams.

Although working full time as the personal assistant to the bursar at Sedbergh School, Margaret devotes much of her spare time to running her sheep flock which includes a busy summer showing schedule. Among some good wins this year was the Teeswater breed championship at Grayrigg and Selside Show.

“I retain around three Teeswater tup lambs every year and put them to Dalesbred ewes to produce Mashams. The Mashams are sold at the breed society's main autumn sale at Bentham while Teeswater tups are sold as shearlings at the official Teeswater sale at Leyburn,” explained Margaret who has been encouraged by the continuing popularity of the Masham in the face of competition from other commercial breeding ewes.

“This is only the third year that I've sold my own home-bred Masham gimmer lambs but demand is good and we averaged £59 at the Bentham sale last month,” says Margaret.

The Teeswater is one of the UK's rarest sheep numbering around 300 pedigree breeding ewes but despite its rarity the distinctive fleece of the breed is still among the finest and most valuable produced by any breed. Teeswater fleeces have been making up to £1.50 a kilo this year.

Despite the narrowing gene pool within the Teeswater breed, enthusiasts are striving to retain fleece quality as well as the required conformation traits.

“We like a fine fleece on our Teeswater sheep with a nice, even purl. We can get fleeces weighing 5-6kg from Teeswater shearlings,” says Margaret who believes the fleece quality of the breed has improved considerably over the years.

The family have always included fleece quality as an important selection criteria for the flock and three years ago decided to start showing fleeces as well as sheep.

“We're still learning, but we'd already picked up afew prize cards before we won the championship at Westmorland Show. The championship winner was a Masham fleece from a shearling ewe that we'd ear-marked before she was sheared,” says Margaret.

Stephen Ballinger, Regional Manager of the British Wool Marketing Board, said there had been a strong turnout of fleeces in competitions throughout the season.

“The standard at Westmorland Show was high in all categories and was typical of the growing interest in exhibiting fleeces of all breeds. The Teeswater is renowned for its fleece quality and the champion Masham fleece was a great example of the breed's reputation for good wool.”

British Wool Marketing Board


Must ReadView All

Indian govt doubles MEIS incentive for garments, madeups

Textiles | On 25th Nov 2017

Indian govt doubles MEIS incentive for garments, madeups

Amid a sharp fall in exports, especially in October 2017, the Indian...

Bangladesh agrees to EU conditions for trade benefits

Apparel/Garments | On 25th Nov 2017

Bangladesh agrees to EU conditions for trade benefits

Bangladesh has decided to amend its labour law and the Bangladesh...

Infrastructure status to boost Indian logistics sector

Textiles | On 25th Nov 2017

Infrastructure status to boost Indian logistics sector

With the Indian logistics sector being granted infrastructure status, ...

Interviews View All

DK Sharma
Velocity Apparelz

We constantly communicate with employees at all levels

Amit Jain
Shingora Textiles Ltd

‘In terms of fabric, the fastest growing category for us is a blend of...

Nishank Patel
Shri Dinesh Mills Limited

Broad range of fabrics will sell well this financial year

Ravindra Jain, Ashish Baid

Oswal Prints Private Limited has been manufacturing and exporting ethnic...

Erik Sy

Manila-based CustomThread is a start-up offering premium custom apparel...

Suresh P Bagrecha

Komal Texfab, founded in 1981, is into manufacturing of knitted fabrics,...

Marcel Alberts
Eurofibers

Coating at a fibre level is a practice not usually seen in the...

Silke Brand-Kirsch
Schlegel und Partner

Silke Brand-Kirsch, executive partner of Schlegel und Partner, a leading...

Lynda Kelly
Suominen Corporation

Suominen Corporation is a manufacturer of nonwovens as roll goods for...

Silvia Venturini Fendi
Fendi s.r.l

"Yes, my confidence and positive attitude are my strengths and should be...

Igor Chapurin
Chapurin

"Now we can see the Russian trend in international fashion. And Russian...

Madhu Jain
Madhu Jain

She grew up in the walled city of Old Delhi, completed her studies, and...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

November 2017

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

news category


Related Categories:

Planning to Take the Leap towards
Sustainability?

Do you see sustainability as a route to business growth?

Yes No

Do you think the sustainability space has the needed tools and resources available for a business to lead change?

Yes No

Active Poll

Do you see sustainability as a route to business growth?

Yes
68.5%
No
12.4%
Skip
19.1%

Total Votes: 89

Do you think adopting a sustainable approach will be a profitable move for your business?

Yes No

Active Poll

Do you think the sustainability space has the needed tools and resources available for a business to lead change?

Yes
61.8%
No
30.3%
Skip
7.9%

Total Votes: 89

Do you want the world to know about your sustainability journey and your business’ environmental footprint?

Yes No

Active Poll

Do you think adopting a sustainable approach will be a profitable move for your business?

Yes
86.5%
No
10.1%
Skip
3.4%

Total Votes: 89

Thanks for your valuable feedback. Claim your free latest sustainability e-book.

Active Poll

Do you want the world to know about your sustainability journey and your business’ environmental footprint?

Yes
80.9%
No
9.0%
Skip
10.1%

Total Votes: 89


E-News Insight
Subscribe Today and Get the
Latest News Update in Your Mail Box.
Advanced Search