A CATTLE sale in Hereford was due to reach a milestone this year, but organisers were forced to pull the event due to coronavirus.

This year’s spring show and sale of pedigree Hereford cattle would have marked 100 years of the fixture at Hereford market.

The first sale was held in 1920, 42 years after the establishment of what was then known as the Hereford Herd Book Society.

A vast proportion of the past century’s selling was conducted by father and son, Bill and Julian Gallimore, being successive official auctioneers to the society and witnessing much of the peak of the breed’s trade.

Julian Gallimore started in the 1960s, which he describes as being a continuation of the glory years where the numbers of pedigree Herefords sold are now hard to imagine in any breed.

He said: “At the premier January sale in 1963, 340 bulls were entered and among the purchasers was Jimmy Schofield who lived in Westmorland but bought for Argentina and Uruguay, Quinton Smith for South Africa, British Live Exports which bought for Australia and the Americas and Carlos Duggan, usually known as Charlie.

“In my first 12 months in the job, we held five sales of bulls between October and April, where we sold 1,619 bulls and 251 females.”

Now, two shows and sales are held at Hereford market each year. Following the long careers of the Gallimores, Mike Evans took to the rostrum, followed by the Society’s current auctioneer, Greg Christopher.

He said: “Brightwells are extremely proud to have sold Hereford cattle in their home town for the past 100 years. The Society sales bring a real buzz and atmosphere to the market.

“New and established old herds are looking to invest in the best bloodlines in the country, with the sales attracting vendors and buyers from all over the UK, including from Northern Ireland and Scotland.”

An online catalogue will be made available for those who were planning to attend this year's spring sale.