Our Ryelands story really begins with the boys raising two lambs this Spring, Skippety and Ruff + Tumble (Texel cross) under the watchful eye of Adam our shepherd.
We went along to the Royal Highland Show in the summer and spent an immense amount of time in the sheep marquee, discovering all the amazing array of different breeds of sheep there. Fraser loved the Ryelands there, with their docile nature and sweet woolly faces there was no going back for him! So getting Ryelands seemed like a natural progression of course after Skippety and Ruff + Tumble!!
We asked around locally, but being the end of year in terms of getting gimmers in for tupping (mating) we could only source tups! Luckily for us the Carlisle Show was coming up so it was a good opportunity to take a visit and see what we could get!
With much appreciated help from Susan from the Scottish Ryeland Group, we nervously bid on two Ryelands shearlings (gimmers in Scotland!) and won the bid! It was a nerve-racking and exciting experience! Certainly the biggest sheep sale we’ve ever been to!
Our two lovely Ryeland gimmers (meaning last years lambs that have been sheared once) arrived from the Carlisle Show on 17th September. They had a journey up from Ashgrove Farm in Herefordshire so we gave them a few days to settle in. Local breeders the McEwen-Kings kindly transported them home to us.
Rare breeds have different alphabetical name beginnings, last years was V so we had to choose some unusual names, Velvet (Fraser’s) and Valentina (Aidan’s)!
They have settled in well and Aidan and I fixed up an old trough for them to use. We are training them to come to a bucket and it is a slow but rewarding process!
Watch this space for more photos of Velvet and Valentina and the story of Windblowns arrival! …….