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  Dear Member,

  Welcome to the Spring Newsletter.  Due to many hours spent updating/improving our Club Stand for Harrogate I didn’t get time to do a winter letter as planned, sorry!  As a result I’ll start this letter by belatedly reporting on our final Stock Show of 2009 and giving the results of the Points Comp 2009! 

  The Welsh Area Stock Show near Newport, South Wales on 21 November was our final event of 2009.  This saw Emma Whitcombe making her NACC judging debut, thank you Emma and pleased you really enjoyed it.  Best in Show was Pete Holdaway’s superb Silver 5-8 boar “Ratzinger” – this result made it a fantastic hat-trick of NACC B.I.S.’s for “Ratzinger” after his YSS & SASS successes, congratulations Pete.   It was a good day also for Mary Jaffa’s new and fastly improving Stud of Silvers taking 2nd & 3rd BIS with two boars - her splendid adult and very promising u/5.  It was good to see John Archer showing a very nice team of Golden’s giving Steve Davies & Katrina Goodship some good competition; Best Golden going to Steve’s young adult boar ahead of Katrina’s lovely young sow.  Just a small entry of AOC’s all from new to the breed Stuart Inch, with his Lemon u/5 leading the way here; great to see you taking the breed on Stuart the Club need more like you!  There was a good entry of Solid’s with Penny Bell’s Optimist Stud team battling it out with M&G Thorpe’s Hero Cavies for the Solid Points award!  It was to be Optimist’s day taking all three challenge places with Penny’s Silver adult sow taking top spot. 

  Points Competition 2009 Results: 

GOLDEN: Winner - Steve Davies 119; Runner-up - Cherrone Stud 54.

SILVER: Winner - Pete Holdaway 215; Runner-up - Jane Phillipson 106.

AOC: Winner - Di-L-Emma Stud 111; Runner-up - Simon Neesam 82.

SOLID: Winner - Optimist Stud 214: Runner-up - Hero Cavies 132.

JUVENILE: Winner - CAC Cavies 32; Runner-up - Beth Holdaway 10.

OVERALL: Winner - Pete Holdaway 215; Runner-up - Optimist Stud 214.

  The year ended on a great note for one of our young members; our Clubs nomination for the first ESCC Joan Radeglia Memorial Trophy for Juvenile of the Year being awarded to Miss Hannah Salisbury (CAC Cavies). Congratulations Hannah, thoroughly deserved, keep up the excellent work.  Hannah was delighted to win this award in particular as it was her final year as a Juvenile; she was presented with her award at Bradford Championship Show 2010.  

  It has been a busy start to 2010 with two Stock Shows and our Club AGM. 

  The Adult Stock Show our primary event of the year at the prestigious Bradford Championship Show, Harrogate opened proceedings with long established Agouti fancier Malcolm Atkinson kindly judging.  He found a slightly disappointing entry of 25 Adults, which was largely dominated by the 12 Silvers and it was here he found the BIS pig.  This was Jane Phillipson’s splendid boar “Archie” who was in top form and gave Jane an awesome fourth Adult SS BIS in the previous five years, a truly fantastic achievement under strong competition, congratulations Jane. 

  This time Pete had to settle for runner-up with another of his super Silver boars.  Third BIS and Best AOC was Simon Neesam’s eye catching Lemon boar “Yeats”; this was the third year in succession Simon has had leading AOC.

  Despite just 7 AOC’s on show it was good to see all four colours present: Best Cinnamon & Chocolate – Di-L-Emma Stud; Best Cream – Tartuffe Stud.  After seeing at our YSS just one Golden entry (which was absent) it was yet again very worrying to find just one at our Adult SS – so Best Golden went to Steve Davies’ boar.  The Solid entry of five was also lower than expected with Optimist Stud’s Cinnamon boar taking the honours. Just the one Juvenile owned adult but still good to see Beth Holdaway’s lovely Silver boar and for those of you thinking this is one of Pete’s, this boar was actually found and bought by Beth from a Pet Shop!

  Supporting 5-8 & U/5 classes saw 36 entries largely made up of 20 Silvers. Best Support went to Pete Holdaway’s Silver 5-8 boar ahead of Steve Davies’ promising baby Lemon sow with third Simon Neesam’s Lemon 5-8 boar. 

  The Bradford Champ classes saw Agouti’s challenging hard resulting in two being up for Best Reserve Exhibit.   Pete Holdaway claimed this award and Best Agouti with his Silver 5-8 boar “Rivington”, a good result for the breed; Steve Davies’ baby Lemon sow taking a creditable fifth place. Best Silver Adult and winning the NACC Vic Bailey Cup was Val Pearse’s boar.

  The Club Stand was on display again at Bradford Champ which attracted many members and general public which was good.  Saturday 12.30pm saw Steve Davies give an illustrated talk with all six colours on “Showing & Judging Agouti’s” which was well attended by members but by very few non-members or public! Despite the stand being much admired it was not awarded by the Club Stand judges, which was disappointing!  Under one of the Stand tables was stored a large box containing Club rosettes for two Stock Shows and trophies for the Points Competition but late on the Sunday these went missing which was very annoying to say the least – if anyone has any information regarding this please contact me!

   The A.G.M. & Midland Area SS at Wye Vern on the 27 February was our next and latest event.  The A.G.M. was quite poorly attended but went well and was entertaining at times!  There were no major issues on the Agenda; the following however were decided – Subs 2011 would see FREE Membership for all UK Juveniles (U16); Overseas Membership to rise to £6.00; all other subs to remain as present. 

Judging Panel – it was decided to reduce the current qualification period of membership from 5 to 3 years before being able to be nominated for the Club Judging Panel.  The balance sheet showed a profit for the year of £142.67 which was largely due to NPM.

   The Midland Area SS saw a very welcome judging return by Andrew Pearson.  The entry for his return of 42 was lower than expected and disappointing but I feel this may be due to the time of year as there was a respectable number of exhibitors but didn’t have the quantity to show; also one exhibitor was unable to make it due to her husbands 50th birthday, poor excuse Madelaine – only joking hope you had a good day?

  The entry was made up of 13 Silvers; 6 Goldens; 12 AOC’s and 11 Solids.  It was pleasing to see a respectable entry of AOC’s with all colours entered (although the single Cream was absent) and it was the AOC section that led the way and honours with Best in Show going to Simon Neesam’s well-known and impressive Lemon boar “Yeats”, congratulations Simon made the long journey worth while.  A Lemon also took third place this being Steve Davies’ u/5 sow with runner-up spot going to Pete Holdaway’s Silver Adult boar “Raptor”. Behind the two Lemons in the AOC Chall was Di-L-Emma Stud’s Cinnamon Adult boar.  The entry of Goldens was again low with 5 of the 6 being from Steve and Katrina, the best going to Steve’s u/5 boar.  Optimist Stud again led the way in the Solid section taking the top two spots with her Silver ahead of the Cinnamon; the Silver also taking a good third spot in the overall Silver Challenge.

  The overdue new Club Handbook as previously mentioned in the last letter had been delayed due to unforeseen personal circumstances last summer, again sorry for this but I’m pleased to say it is currently being compiled.  There is still time to add material/articles which I’m short of and as this is your book could I please ask for articles no matter how large or small which would make it interesting; adverts are also still available at a bargain cost of just £10 Full Page & £6 Half Page. Please could you forward anything you’d like to include to me asap.

   Our new Club Website is proving a big success and has currently recorded over 1240 hits, attracting International interest and new members.  This is very pleasing and meant the many tireless hours spent building it by Pete Holdaway worthwhile.  The last couple of months have seen Pete again put in a lot of work updating and improving the site and just this week has added amongst a number of things photos of our recent Stock Shows; there’s also numerous photos from 2009 plus many throughout the 20th Century starting in 1903.  The site also contains useful information on the Club & Breed.  If you haven’t visited the site please do so www.nationalagouticavyclub.com and if you have but not recently, it’s well worth paying it another visit and to do so regularly. I’ve still got plenty of past photos of Agouti’s and members to pass on to Pete!  Both Pete and I would appreciate any feedback regarding the site and its content and if anyone has any good quality photos past or present or any old Agouti material I would be greatful if you could forward to Pete or me. 

  The 2010 Points Competition is now well under way with this year seeing the AOC being split into all four colours. The latest positions after Bradford Champ & WyeVern are:

 GOLDEN: Steve Davies 43; Katrina Goodship 20.

SILVER: Pete Holdaway 57; Jane Phillipson 24; Steve Davies 16; CAC Cavies 6; 4 others 5 or less.

CINNAMON: Dilemma Stud 36; Tartuffe Stud 3.

LEMON: Simon Neesam 44; Steve Davies 20; Stuart Inch 18; Hero Cavies 6.

CREAM: Tartuffe Stud 8.

CHOCOLATE: Di-L-Emma Stud 8.

SOLID: Optimist Stud 62; Hero Cavies 26; Tartuffe Stud 3.

JUVENILE: Miss B.Richardson 10; Beth Holdaway 5.

   The next show to gain points is at Yorkshire Champ Show on 10 April where points are allocated in both the Yorkshire and NACC Stock Show classes.

 Show Dates 2010 for you diary are: 10 April - Yorkshire Champ & NACC Northern Area SS; 22 May - Devon County (Points Show); 17 July - NCC Champ Show, Oswestry (Points Show); 7 August - Betley Agricultural (Points Show); 22 August – NACC Southern Area SS at Essex; 4 September - NACC YSS & London Champ Show; 20 November - NACC Welsh Area SS at Welsh National.  

  I would like to welcome New Club Members: Craig Paterson & Bena Neilson - Cranna Cavies (Aberdeenshire); Rebecca & Ben Lee - Rebble Cavies (Newark, Notts); Miss B. Richardson (N.Yorkshire); Lena & Cornelia Wilhelmsson (Sweden); Dorte Roper (Denmark) and Julie Inch (Cornwall). 

  I will finish by saying I hope you’ve found this letter useful & interesting; good luck with your Agouti’s and thank goodness the winter is all but over and the grass is nearly here! 

 Steve Davies (Secretary)