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Contributions made to the North of England sheep sector rewarded by NSA

22nd February 2024

Two respected sheep farmers from the Northern Region of the National Sheep Association (NSA) were recognised for their valued contributions made to the northern sheep industry at a recent NSA meeting.

Well known, former Secretary of the Swaledale Sheep Breeders Association, John Stephenson from Bishop Auckland, County Durham, was surprised to be presented with the TI Allison Award at the NSA Northern Region Annual Members’ Meeting (ARMM) at the start of February. The award recognises John’s valued contribution to the sheep industry within northern England and further afield. 

John was presented with the award by NSA Northern Region Trustee and fellow Swaledale sheep enthusiast Alan Alderson. He comments: “Receiving the TI Allison Memorial Award came as a complete shock and surprise and I was at a loss to think of anything to say.  It was more special as the Award was presented by Alan Alderson who I had worked with for 15years in our roles as Chairman and Secretary of the Swaledale Sheep Breeders Association.  Having attended NSA organised Sheep Events for more than 20 years in all countries of the UK I appreciate how much work is done by the NSA and I would like to thank NSA Northern Region for presenting me with this award.”

John was Secretary of the Swaledale Sheep Breeders Association for 18 years and worked for the Association for three years before taking the role. This interest and position stemmed from his family’s long established involvement with the breed since the Association’s inception in 1920.

The recent NSA Northern Region ARMM also included the presentation of a second award, the Geoff Lawn Memorial Award, this year given to junior auctioneer at CCM Auctions, Rob Cloughton. Rob was named as the deserving winner of the award recognising the achievements of a young sheep farmer residing in NSA Northern Region. As well as working as an auctioneer, following in the footsteps of his grandfather and great grandfather, Rob is involved with the family farm, Browna Paddocks Farm, Hawes, North Yorkshire, running Swaledale and Bluefaced Leicester breeding sheep producing North of England Mules.

Rob says: “I would like to thank NSA Northern Region for presenting me with this award. I feel very privileged to receive it.”

NSA Northern Region Manager Chris Adamson concludes: “Congratulations must go to both John and Rob on receiving these prestigious awards for the north of England sheep sector. Nominations for both indicated a high level of respect and admiration for their work which has been and continues to be integral to the success and future of the sector in this area.”