World sheep shearing champions crowned at Royal Highland Show

The world’s top sheep shearing talent have battled it out at the Royal Highland Show – with 30 countries competing for the top prizes this year.

The Golden Shears World Sheep Shearing and Woolhandling Championships is the pinnacle for shearers and wool handlers, with teams coming from as far afield as Chile, South Africa and New Zealand to compete.

This is only the second time Golden Shears has been held in Scotland, the last time being 2003.

Taking the top individual titles were Gwion Lloyd Evans from Wales for machine, Bonile Rabela from South Africa for blade, and Rosie Keenan from Scotland for wool handling.

World sheep shearing champions

World sheep shearing champions

In the team’s section, South Africa triumphed in blade, Wales took the title for machine, and Wales for wool handling.

New Zealand will host the 20th Golden Shears World Shearing and Woolhandling Championships in Masterton in 2026.

The Golden Shears was first held in 1977 and takes place every few years in different locations around the world, including South Africa, New Zealand, Ireland, Norway and France.

Organised by Golden Shears World Council, the aim of the championships is to promote and encourage interest in wool and the art and skill of sheep shearing and wool handling.

RHASS Chairman, Jim Warnock, said: ‘The Society was delighted to finally welcome the Golden Shears this year, having won a competitive tender to host the event back in 2019.

‘It was a brilliant competition which brought the eyes of the world to Scotland to watch the very best in shearing and wool handling talent.

‘Next year likewise promises to bring a global aspect to the Show, as we are looking forward to hosting the Royal Agricultural Society of the Commonwealth’s (RASC) conference at the 2024 Royal Highland Show.’

RHASS Chief Steward of Sheep Shearing, Bruce Lang, added: ‘It has been absolutely fantastic to see the Golden Shears back at the Royal Highland Show once again after a 20-year hiatus.

‘The event is a spectacular showcase of global shearing and wool handling talent, and having it at the heart of Scotland’s premier agricultural show really shines a spotlight on the sport.

‘Huge congratulations to all of the winning individuals and teams.

‘It takes an enormous amount of hard work, determination, and skill to reach this level and represent your country on the world stage.’

The full list of results can be accessed here.

Read more on Scottish Field’s Outdoors pages. 

Plus, don’t miss the July issue of Scottish Field magazine.