The Aireburn herd from Skipton, North Yorkshire, have been crowned as the winners of the 2022 Holstein UK National Premier Herd Award. Brian and Judith Moorhouse, who represent the Northern region, were presented with the highly acclaimed award on Wednesday 14th September at UK Dairy Day.
The award recognises the most outstanding Holstein herd in the country with the winner of each individual Club’s herd competition competing against neighbouring clubs to become one of the seven regional winners and finalists in the National Premier Herd Competition.
The seven regional winners are:
- Eastern – Messrs Winter, Corringham Herd
- Northern – G B Moorhouse, Aireburn Herd
- Northern Ireland – W & A Patton, Ards Herd
- Scottish – B & V Davidson, Errolston Herd
- Southern – Wills Brothers Limited, Willsbro Holsteins
- Welsh – R & E Bowen, Lan Herd
- Western – Riverdane Holsteins
The Aireburn herd was established in 1968 by the late George Moorhouse before moving to Hesper Farm in 1971. There have been a number of on-farm sales over the years and unfortunately in 2001, most of the herd was lost to Foot and Mouth Disease, however, 40 young heifers were retained which form the foundations of today’s herd. Prominent families include the Bevins, Dellias and Honeys and there are currently 97 animals classified as Very Good and 46 as Excellent.
The Moorhouse family, who won a Master Breeder Award in 2018, run a grass based herd with buffer feed in the summer months and TMR in the winter.
National Premier Herd Judge, and 2021 winner, Max Davies of the Davlea herd, visited each of the finalists and commenting on the Aireburn herd, he said “It was a pleasure to judge the National Premier Herd Competition and the quality of cows across all of the finalist’s farms was incredible”. Commenting on the winning Aireburn herd, Max said “These are my kind of cows and the herd is exceptionally uniform with great balance of frames, exceptional width of chest and rump, combined with quality udders throughout the herd. I really admire how uniform the herd is and combined with being modern in size, they really would fit any system”.
On behalf of Holstein UK, Chairman Michael Smale, concludes, “The Holstein UK Premier Herd Competition pits some of the best herds in the UK against one another and I am delighted to be able to congratulate the Moorhouse family for winning the national award. A commitment to producing quality, purposeful animals is reasserted and demonstrates the many years of dedication to the Holstein breed from the Moorhouse family. I would also like to congratulate B & V Davidson of the Errolston herd who were named as Reserve Champion and Riverdane Holsteins who are Honourable Mention. Many thanks also to Max for taking the time to visit all of the regional finalists in order to determine our national winner.
Holstein UK is a member-owned organisation aimed at assisting members in breeding profitable, robust and productive dairy cattle. Holstein UK is dedicated to innovation and quality and is driven to continuously improve the services offered. The charity is also the parent of two subsidiary companies, the Cattle Information Service (CIS) and the National Bovine Data Centre (NBDC) and is organiser of UK Dairy Day, an annual trade event for the dairy industry.
The CIS is the UK’s leading milk recording and health testing organisation operating a state-of-the-art laboratory.
The National Bovine Data Centre (NBDC) exists to develop industry-leading analysis of data for the improvement of dairy production in the UK. UK Dairy Day is held annually in September, taking place at the International Centre, Telford on Wednesday 13th September 2023.
- Holstein UK was formed in 1999 from the merger of the Holstein Friesian Society (founded in 1909 as the British Holstein Cattle Society) and the British Holstein Society (founded in 1946)
- The Society registers all pedigree Holstein and British Friesian cattle in the UK
- The Holstein breed in the UK currently averages 8,600 litres per lactation over an average of three lactations