Pigs - Lesmahagow Show 2011

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Lesmahagow Show first for pigs in Scotland

The Lesmahagow Show is the first show in Scotland for 30 years to have hosted showing and judging of pigs. The section was run by the Scottish Pig Keepers Association with a strong input from their local member, Karen McKay, a farmer with an interest in rare breeds of pigs. Entries came from all over Scotland. Congratulations to them and to Lesmahagow Farmers Society for hosting the event. I felt it was a great success and, for me, educational and entertaining. I hope they repeat it next year.

Pigs are delightful animals but absolutely uncontrollable. They are supposed to be controlled with a pig board and a stick but, in this event, the contest between handler and pig was overwhelmingly won by the pigs. It is perhaps no surprise that the handlers were generally young and fit. The one exception was a Large Black Pig which, because of its size and weight, only moved slowly and could be well controlled by its elderly owner. Trying to make sense of the mayhem was the judge, Mr John Herbert from Stafford, immaculately dressed in a suit with a bowler hat. How he managed it, I do not know, as the pigs rarely stopped moving around. However he did select one Gloucester Old Spot as winner from a pair of seemingly identical young pigs from the same litter. This, shown by Lisa McCaig of West Linton, became the winner of the Pigs section. This champion eventually proceeded to the Champion of Champions judging in the main arena where it carried on running around chased by Lisa. The other contestants, a heifer, a Beltex sheep, a Clydesdale and a pony were on their best behaviour.

Round the back of the pig tent was a trailer containing a Hampshire sow with a litter of Hampshire/Tamworth cross piglets. A lot of the time they were snoozing but, when they came to life, it was pig mayhem again. They jumped on their mother, chased around and chewed the laces of their handler's trainers.

So much fun in one section. I can't wait until next year!

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