Galloway Country Fair: performing pigs and leaping sheep

THE Galloway Country Fair will include “performing pigs, fence leaping sheep, beautiful birds of prey, and dogs of all kinds”, according to its organisers.

Events planned for 20 and 21 August at Drumlanrig Castle include the “Lamb National”, which involves a small flock of Herdwick sheep – complete with teddy bear jockeys, with names such as “Ed Sheerin'” – gallop round a circuit, leaping jumps along the way.

Bob Hogg, who organises the race, will be joined at the fair by his son, Tom, who will run “The Hogg Show”, involving seven of his pigs, including Kunekunes, Mangalicas, and middle whites.

Tom worked with sheepdogs previously, but wanted to diversify and – on the principle of “don’t look too far from home for your destiny” – realised his surname pointed the way forward.

“Pigs are wonderful animals, incredibly bright, and you develop a really strong bond with them,” he explained.

Bob was inspired to launch his “Lamb National” after helping move a flock of sheep round a farm.

“It was a flock of Herdwicks and we were quite amazed,” he remembered.

“The field walls had holes in them for sheep to go through but they just didn’t bother, they just leapt straight over.

“These are sheep that won’t do anything they don’t want to, and I’ve seen them clear a five-bar gate.

“We have fences in a field for training, but quite often when we go down there they will be jumping over just for the fun of it.”

Other attractions at this year’s Galloway Country Fair include Phil Gibbons flying his birds of prey from Ridgeside Falconry.

Read more stories on Scottish Field’s news pages.

Plus, don’t miss an in-depth look at Shetland’s otters in the August issue of Scottish Field magazine.

Galloway Country Fair - Ridgeside Falconry