Cattle classes might have been cancelled, but all ages flocked to see the sheep at the Rangiora Show on Saturday, October 26.

Youngsters were leading their pet lambs, old farmers were spinning yarns and even new Waimakariri Mayor Dan Gordon cast his eye over the sheep entries.

It was Gordon's first official public engagement since being sworn in as mayor two days before the show.

"My favourite time of year is always coming to our local A&P show, to see all the machinery, to see the livestock, to see all the horses and everything that goes on."

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Gordon said while he has no livestock on his lifestyle block at Ashley at present, he had a keen interest in Suffolk sheep.

"Suffolk are my favourite because my mother used to have Siamese cats and we got them because they have that look about them.

"They're a nice sheep, have nice wool and a good temperament. There's some nice sheep here and they're a credit to our local farmers."

Judge Hugh Taylor congratulates Oxford farmer Dave Gillespie on winning all breeds champion meat breed with his Southdown ewe.Photo / David Hill
Judge Hugh Taylor congratulates Oxford farmer Dave Gillespie on winning all breeds champion meat breed with his Southdown ewe.Photo / David Hill

Youngsters Anna Gartery and Amelie Bell were thrilled to win ribbons with their pet lambs in the Years 3 & 4 and Years 1 & 2 classes respectively.

Anna comes from a farm at Cust, near Rangiora, and said her lamb was "cuddly" and she liked the way he walked next to her.

Amelie said she gave her lamb "so many cuddles". She planned to hang the ribbon up with her other prizes when she got home.

Judge Hugh Taylor had the job of selecting the all breeds champions and said he was impressed with the sheep on display.

"I know the numbers are down a wee bit, but generally the standard is very high. A lot of these sheep will go through the Canterbury A&P Show and do very well.

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"And even into the flock section there's some very good sheep, which is good to see."

Taylor chose Oxford farmer Dave Gillespie's Southdown ewe as all breeds champion meat breed, while the champion wool breed ribbon went to a Corriedale ram bred by TA & CM Beaton.

He said most farmers were in good spirits thanks to a very favourable season with plenty of rain.