History of our Society

Times Past

A Breed from the Past

The Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society, originally constituted in 1910, published registrations from 1912 – 1921.

Although there was always work going on it was not until the threat of extinction became imminent that the Society once again became vibrant and the next book of registration was published in 1981. Since then this rare, beautiful and versatile breed has continued to gain momentum, and although still not totally out of danger for the very same reasons as earlier, a Herd Book has been produced every year.

Shetland Cattle have been known in the Islands for hundreds of years and have played an important role in the economy of the community as dual purpose animals giving a good milk yield together with beef of exceptional quality.

The Beginning

The Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society was established at a meeting held in the Spiggie Hotel, Dunrossness, Shetland, on the 28th October 1910 and the first General Meeting was held in the Queen's Hotel, Lerwick, on the 12th January 1912. Members were enlisted, Inspectors appointed for England and Scotland as well as Shetland and the County Organiser undertook the recording of milk yields and butterfat content.

The first volume of the Herd Book was published in 1912, with pedigrees of 380 cows and 39 bulls, and continued to be produced even during the First World War until 1922. Following the publication of the 1913 volume with 535 cows, 60 bulls and 115 calves, Mr W Laidlaw McDougal J.P., a Member of Council, prepared an important article on the characteristics of the breed.

Taking Responsibility

In 1914 the Society accepted responsibility for selecting bulls for a Premium scheme by the Board of Agriculture which enabled 10 to 12 bulls to be maintained in the Islands. During 1922 - which was a peak year for Pedigree Shetland Cattle - 556 cows were served by these approved bulls. By this time the value as first crosses had been recognised mainly as a means of producing larger bull calves. This resulted in dissension among Members at the AGM held in January 1923 and the 1922 registrations were never published. Neverthless, the Society has remained in existence and meetings have been held periodically.

Re-establishing the Herd Book

An important development came in June 1939 when Society Members sponsored substantial prizes at both local Shows and in 1944 94 cows were inspected and tattooed in an attempt to re-establish the Herd Book. In 1945 Council met to discuss a voluntary scheme of tuberculin testing with representatives of the Department of Agriculture, and so began a scheme which resulted in Shetland becoming the first county in the United Kingdom to be declared free of bovine tuberculosis.

After the Second World War, Shetland cattle being classified as a dairy breed, did not qualify for the 'Hill Calf Subsidy' unless crossed with a beef breed. This led to serious reductions in purebred animals though the situation was alleviated somewhat in the 1950s when the breed was designated dual purpose. An unsuccessful attempt was made in 1947 to introduce an AI scheme for the Shetland breed and in the 1960s the general use of semen of several other breeds almost resulted in the elimination of purebred stock in the Islands.

A Breed with Value

A major event in 1960 was the visit of the Royal Family to Shetland, when Shetland cattle, including a fine dun cow in milk, were exhibited.

In 1967 the Brucellosis Eradication Scheme commenced in the Islands and at that time it was noted that the Shetland was still the majority breed. In the same year Mr James Dean of DAFS, Inverness, was invited to Shetland to comment on the breed, and together with Mr George Smith of DAFS, Edinburgh, he addressed a meeting in the Gott School, Tingwall, on the 23rd July, 1968. Mr Dean commented on the value of the breed to Shetland and Mr Smith expressed surprise that Shetland bull semen supplied free by DAFS cost one pound sterling more than semen from any other breed. This was another contributory factor in the decline of Shetland Cattle.

60 Years On

Sixty years after the first General Meeting in Lerwick another General Meeting was held at the same venue. At this meeting Mr Alexander Morton, deputising for Mr James Barr of DAFS, Edinburgh, gave an address on the work being carried out by the Animal Breeding Research Organisation on the 'Multibreed Approach to Breed Comparisons'. Members present volunteered to supply Shetland heifers to form part of this research project. Mr T. A. U. Fraser was re-appointed President at this meeting and Mr H.M.S.Bowie appointed Secretary.

In the following year the Rare Breeds Survival Trust was established and in 1974 Shetland cattle were placed in Category Two on the Trust's priority lists. With the support of Mr. Lawrence Alderson, Technical Consultant to the RBST, 123 registrations were received by the Society in 1976. However, lack of interest at official level locally meant the postponement of a new issue of the Herd Book. Even more serious was the non-availability of pure-bred Shetland bull semen over an eight-year period during the 1970's.

A Place in the Future

The two main herds in Shetland belonging to the President (Glebe) and the Secretary (Araclett) were dispersed at the end of 1978. Several attempts were made to gain support for the breed from the Shetland Islands Council and this was forthcoming in 1981 with the publication of the Ten Year Plan for Agriculture in which it was recommended that a grant of £100 be paid to the owner of each pure-bred Shetland cow and £3200 to the custodians of up to three Shetland bulls. The interest of the RBST in Shetland Cattle from 1974 onwards resulted in meetings between the Trust and Society officials. Later meetings between Trust officials and members of the Shetland Islands Council ended in an agreement this year that the Trust will administer an initial sum of £19,000 set aside by the Council to help secure the future of the breed.

The Council of the Herd Book Society wishes to record a debt of gratitude to the following organisations for their co-operation and material assistance:- Department of Agriculture and Fisheries for Scotland (Edinburgh and Inverness); Shetland Islands Council (Lerwick); Rare Breeds Survival Trust (Kenilworth); and Animal Breeding Research Organisation (Edinburgh).

Hugh M.S.Bowie
Secretary
July 1982

 

1981-1989

1982

Progress since the New Foundation Herd Book of 1981 is recorded by Secretary Hugh Bowie for the 2nd 1982 edition. 5 cows and a bull of the Araclett line were located and accepted for entry along with an additional 32 females. 77 calves were also registered from all 4 recognised sire lines. Locally AI continued unsatisfactory with only 1 heifer and 3 bull calves resulting from the administration of a large number of straws.

Continued financial assistance from the SIC, administered by the RBST was greatly appreciated by Council members as was this volume typescript preparation by Mrs C. A. Calvert.

T.A.U. Fraser,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1983

21 island calves were registered whilst mainland numbers increased to 53 new calves.

Mr Bowie also writes that, "Members welcomed the news that official recognition was given by the United Kingdom to the Society under the terms of the EEC Directive 77/504 - Purebred Breeding Cattle."

T.A.U. Fraser,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1984

With the steady increase of Island cattle "The aim of the Society is to help maintain vigorous stock, that remain true to type with all the attributes that have enabled them to exist for more than a millennium. To this end Inspectors will assist in the choice of bulls and will endeavour to ensure that the 4 existing sire lines continue to be represented until new lines are established."

This line imbalance was also reflected on mainland Britain which would be addressed, whilst a significant development was the establishment of a herd by Leeds City Council.

Correspondence with DAFS Edinburgh regarding EEC Directive 84/419, July 1984 raised concerns of the Society's continued official recognition, as yet unresolved.

Thanks to the continued SIC grant with the RBST administration one Shetland herd now exceeded 20 head of purebred animals.

Robert Ramsay,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1985

Concerns on breeding sire line ratios continued, with the old spectre of cross-breeding again coming to the fore. However the 1984 problem with DAFS was resolved with the Society being officially recognised under EEC Directive 84/419 after minor adjustments to the rules and regulations for entry included in the 1984 Herd Book.

"Following correspondence with the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food it was agreed that the breed is dual purpose and hence qualifies for a suckler cow grant if used for pure breeding or if put to an acknowledged beef-breed bull. It is hoped that this will encourage more breeders to keep Shetland cattle for pure breeding purposes,"

From the mainland angle a useful meeting was again held at Stoneleigh with AI still causing problems.

Mr Michael Rosenberg, a tower of strength when the Society was at a low ebb had congratulations extended by new Secretary, Mrs Eleanor Hall, on the occasion of his being made an Honorary Commander of the British Empire.

Robert Ramsay,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1986

Island shortage of AI straws exacerbated the ongoing problem of sire line imbalance on the Isles with pedigree cow cross-breeding consequently going ahead. Elsewhere mainland owners were overcoming the AI non-performance by bull-sharing.

Shetland cattle continued to prevail at local shows with 9 entries at Voe, 5 at Cunningsburgh and 15 at Walls.

Robert Ramsay,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1987

The sire line balance was restored via AI for Heather and Glebe lines whilst grant-aided bulls from Knocknagael, Araclett and Heather were available. The possibility of semen collection from good bulls before slaughter was discussed at a fruitful meeting in Shetland with Messrs G.LH. Alderson and G.E.Cloke representing the RBST.

The Society AGM was henceforth to be held annually on the last Tuesday of March and gratitude again expressed to the SIC, RBST and Mrs Cathie Church.

T. Isbister,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1988

"History was made when the RBST, in conjunction with the local veterinary surgeon, were successful in obtaining semen from local bulls Trondra Thorgeir and Waterloo Charlie. This important breakthrough was made possible with the use of Araclett Doris owned by Mrs E.A. Hall. The semen was collected outside at the premises of Mr & Mrs J.G.H. Moar. Never before has semen been collected anywhere other than at an official AI Centre."

Local bulls Garths Gunner and Trondra Thorgeir were purchased by English breeders.

T. Isbister,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1989

Despite the appalling winter which continued well into the growing season, the acute shortage of fodder did not affect the retention of pedigree animals, which, it had been feared may have been put to market.

T. Isbister,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1990-1999

1990/91

"We are delighted to inform you that Mr Robert Ramsay has successfully bred a red bull as has Leeds city Council."

W. Smith,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1992

The new secretary, Mr Laurence Odie announces that thanks to the strenuous efforts of Mrs Evelyn Leask the first Herd Book has been produced from her computer.

"The big change in this production is that now all animals will have a HB number once they are registered as calves.

Registration certificates are now being issued and full pedigrees can be purchased. We have also adopted a logo which will appear on all stationery."

W. Smith,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1993

The shipwrecked tanker Braer at the southern tip of the Isles made international headlines and many farmers in the area, including Shetland cattle owners, were severely affected by the windblown oil vapours on their land.

Gratitude to Mrs Evelyn Leask for the use of her computer in addition to the SIC and RBST contribution.

Eleanor A. Hall,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1994

President Mrs Eleanor Hall was pleased to announce an increase in new members from all over Britain. She thanked Mr & Mrs Odie, who were retiring as joint secretaries for all their hard work in office which included the Society Logo, Registration and Pre-Registration certificates which went into operation with the 1992 Herd Book.

Again grateful thanks were extended to Evelyn and Norman for collating and typing for the use of their office equipment, also a special accolade to Evelyn for collating and typing up two volumes of the Herd Book in record time in addition to producing two Newsletters plus a Promotional Leaflet.

Due to Mrs E.A.Hall taking up the Presidency Mrs E. Leask took on the post of Secretary in addition to her invaluable services as Herd Book Publisher.

There were fewer representations at local shows due to the voluntary testing for BVD. "Any cattle sold by Shetland Breeders are free from BVD which is a welcome addition to the already high health status."

Eleanor A. Hall,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1995

Norman & Evelyn attended the SCHBS Breeders' meeting at Stoneleigh where a great time was had by all. Subsequently the Lerwick Show and Sale was also a success along with the raffle which raised £2,126.

Eleanor A. Hall,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1996

"Tragically we lost Mrs Eleanor Hall of Walls. She was a tower of strength and consistency as a member, Secretary and President, always displaying a responsibility and determination towards ensuring Shetland Cattle would survive and multiply. Although she was forced to give up her own cows she continued to help selflessly - always busy and always willing."

"BSE has presented us with a new set of problems and perhaps a few opportunities if we can use our disease-free status, registration and traceability to join whatever ASSURANCE SCHEME the Government settles on.

Norman and Evelyn Leask presented a Silver Salver to the Shetland Champion at the RBST Show and Sale at Stoneleigh in September where they had a good chance to exchange views with Mainland members.
"If this organization is to succeed in its purposes we must be willing to listen to each other and cooperate."

Ronnie Eunson,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1997

The Leasks again visited Stoneleigh with new President Jim Johnson and his wife Jane. Jim judged the Shetland Cattle with the winners, the McCaigs, making a return trip to Shetland for John to judge at the successful Lerwick Show and Sale with nearly 60 animals presented.

Ronnie Eunson,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1998

President Ronnie Eunson states in his preface that despite the dismal weather plus depressing state of crofting and farming "...it is indeed a testament to the faith of our membership that the state of the national herd of Shetland Cattle continues to be healthy."

"The SCHBS realises that we must continue to investigate the abilities of the breed and be able to promote its qualities with credible, proven and verifiable results. Owners of Shetland Cattle and prospective ones must know what their cattle are capable of. Nowadays anecdotal information alone is not sufficient, people require scientific fact."

Ronnie Eunson,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

1999

President Jim Johnson observes that despite difficult times this year exhibited significant progress for the breed with a notable number of Island-produced animals finding new homes with both existing and new mainland members, to the mutual benefit of both groups.

He concludes by thanking all individuals and organizations " who have contributed time, effort and money to promote the breed in any way, but most of all those of you who faithfully keep the breed. This in itself promotes the breed."

Ronnie Eunson, in conjunction with the Scottish Agricultural College, has initiated milk trials to confirm the anecdotal evidence of the superior qualities of Shetland milk. The comparative scientific analysis indicated that these native animals do indeed have greater concentrations of the beneficial, anti-carcinogenic, fatty acid Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA), in an extensive report compiled by the SAC.

Due to FMD there had been no progress in the BLUP trials for comparative calf development for Shetland milk from both pure-bred and cross-bred animals.

J.A.J. Johnson,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2000-2009

2000

The year of the Millenium Show saw the presentation of two Shetland heifers by President Laurence Odie to HRH Prince Charles on his visit to the Shetland Agricultural Show. The Prince was also made an Honorary Member of the SCHBS.

New promotional leaflets, "A Breed from the Past with a Place in the Future" and "Shetland Cattle as Conservation Grazers" were produced by Mr & Mrs Ronnie Eunson who effectively met the Millenium Show deadline.

Laurence continues that 2000 also saw the establishment of the UK Mainland Shetland Cattle Support Group. It had regional representatives and a contingent of 30-40 Shetlanders were hoping to do a round tour of the members in 2001, subject to the devastating Foot & Mouth outbreak being contained.

J.A.J. Johnson,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2001

Mrs Evelyn Leask was retiring and President Odie informed the Committee that discussions had taken place with Shetland Agricultural Association regarding their administration of the secretarial duties. He felt that this would be a benefit to the members knowing that the members' queries could be answered during office hours plus a dedicated answering line. More complex matters would be dealt with on a weekly basis or taken to the Management Council which would hopefully give continuity. The estimated workload of 10 hours/week would be funded by the SIC.

The future of the pure-bred heifer calf grant was uncertain but the Chief Executive was fully aware of the Heritage importance of the native breed. A delegation to address the Development Department on this issue was proposed.

L. Odie,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2002

No meetings of the Management Council were held in 2001 due to the FMD restrictions.

The UK Mainland Support Group was mirrored in the Isles with the Shetland Producers' Group to deal with daily matters, thus releasing the SCHBS to concentrate on Animal Registration, transfers and Procedural matters.

The issue of bull inspection was raised by Jim Johnson with a suggestion that a scoring system would help new breeders. He also suggested that the herd book would be enhanced by photos and it was mentioned that the Shetland Agricultural Association had space for the Society on its website. Lauraine Manson observed that the Shetland Pony Breeders' Society Website had proved most successful, giving details of every Shetland pony in Shetland. Costing was to be sourced.

K. Rennie,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2003

President Kevin Rennie informed members that the SCHBS office was now established at the Agricultural Marketing Centre, with the Herd Book now on computer there. Registration Certificates are currently being sent out on registration and the local Herd Book quote was accepted.

It was agreed that the AGM would now be held on the first Sunday of April.

K. Rennie,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2004

Kevin informed members that an office staff amalgamation had resulted in delays with the Herd Book, but hopefully this would be overcome in future along with a simpler procedure for registration.

Administration funding from the SIC was continuing, but with no guarantees for the future.

Cunningsburgh Show had been in contact to establish whether we would incorporate our show again.

Jim Johnson suggested that both Dr SHU Bowie and Mr TAU Fraser should be made honorary life members for their sterling work with the Shetland Breed.

K. Rennie,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2005

New President Ms Jackie Syme filled the Chair at a premature date, thanking all experienced Committee Members for their assistance in various realms including the prompt delivery of the 2004 Herd Book in time for the AGM.

The numbers of calves born seemed to be stable with 148 heifers born in 2004 compared with 144 in 2003, 65 in Shetland and 83 outwith the Isles.

J. Syme,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2006

Jackie again thanked members for their support, remarking that the lack of issues to deal with was surely a good sign that the System was working. She observed that enquiries for cattle had diminished but put this down to the changeover to Single Farm Payment, hoping that trade would pick up once this was established. Notwithstanding this a healthy number of new members have joined the Society during the year, both in and outwith Shetland.

J. Syme,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2007

The President observed that in the wake of the Foot & Mouth outbreaks Shetland cattle prices were extremely low in the back end of the year here. The lack of dedicated slaughter facilities for cattle combined with higher freight charges continue to have a detrimental effect on these prices although there are hopeful signs that these are starting to recover from this extremely low level. Not only did Britain suffer FMD outbreaks in 2007 but also Bluetongue raised its ugly head. This has got to be a time when we all review our biosecurity measures and become very particular as to where we buy our cattle.

Jackie concluded that she was now finishing her 3-year tenure as President in addition to the 7-month Acting Presidential role. She gave heartfelt thanks to both the Committee and all members for their dedicated support over this period.

She continued that she felt it a great honour, as an English incomer, to have gained local acceptance and thus been nominated President of this very respected Society, administrated from its native roots. As her final Presidential act she asserted she would buy us all a drink as a specific appreciation of our faith in her.

J. Syme,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2008

At the AGM Jackie Syme's tenure came to an end and a long standing member and breeder Mr Addie Doull was honoured with the Presidency. On behalf of The Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society he wishes to thank individuals and organisations who have contributed time, effort and money to promote the breed in any way but most of all to those who have faithfully kept the breed, and for their dedication over many years.

We are delighted to have launched www.schbs.co.uk.

2010 will be a very historic year in that the Society was formed in October 1910 and Shetland intends to celebrate this fact with a four day, informative and action packed Centenary Celebration to give all attendees a real flavour of Shetland and its heritage and how Shetland Cattle were central to family life in the country.

Addie Doull,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2009

On behalf of the Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society I wish to thank individuals and organisations who have contributed time, effort and money to promote the breed in any way but most of all to those who have faithfully kept the breed, and for their dedication over many years.

The Society is gratified that native breeds are now achieving their rightful position within agriculture, not only as conservation grazers but as producers of superior quality beef.  This gives us confidence to promote pure breeding to existing and new breeders with this buoyant market.

The Society web site www.schbs.co.uk is working well and there has been a lot of admiration for the pedigree data and its ease of access.  Special thanks to Mrs Bundy for this superb job.

The Shetland Breeders Group are busy getting everything formalised for the 4 day Centenary event – 11th to 14th August.

Addie Doull,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2010-Present

2010

The Society having celebrated its Centenary during 2010, has meant that this has been a very special memorable year.  It was great to see so many of you in Shetland for the celebrations in August and of course we were blessed with very good weather.  On October 27th the Shetland breeders met in the Spiggie Hotel, the location of the inaugural meeting in 1910, for a meal and a chat where we were able to reminisce and soak in the atmosphere.

This Herd Book, with the registrations for the Centenary year, is a special limited edition book and we thank all those, who were eligible and wanted to, for preparing the data for their Herd Profile. This would not have been possible without the tireless efforts of a special person, Paddy Zakaria, who collated all the information and liaised with you all.  A special thank you to Paddy for her time and effort.

On behalf of the Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society I wish to thank individuals and organisations who have contributed time, effort and money to promote the breed in any way but most of all to those who have faithfully kept the breed, and for their dedication over many years.

Addie Doull,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2011

2011 has not been such an exciting year as 2010 but we expected that after all the celebrations. However the extensive publicity during the centenary year has meant that there has been a reasonable trade for animals.

Although registrations in 2011 are less than 2010 it is good to see the traditional colours being registered.  I have always been interested in all the different colours of the Shetland animals and was encouraged by my father to breed coloured Shetland Sheep so I am delighted to see that there are 5 grey and 5 dun registered in this year.  I will never feel content until I have a proper ‘rigged coo’ in my byre.

My belief is that even if you feel that you have to cross breed your cattle for whatever reason then if you can possibly take one pure bred heifer calf off each cow then the gene pool should not be diminished.

It is not always easy keeping the faith and it is with deep gratitude that I thank you, the breeders of Shetland’s native cow, for all the time, hard work, sweat and effort you put into maintaining this superb multi-purpose cow.  Your dedication is sincerely appreciated by the Society.

Norman Leask,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2012

In 2012 it was extremely exciting to have another wonderful visit from members of the Shetland Cattle Breeders Association.  Thank you all so much for making the effort to come to Shetland and see the home of our much loved native cattle.  There was a good entry of cattle at Shetland’s premier show in Cunningsburgh.  The SCHBS tent, manned by the Shetland Cattle from Shetland Breeders Group, had a wide range of memorabilia emphasising the importance of Shetland Cattle within the Shetland community.

Registrations, of course, are not as healthy as we would like, however, the longevity of the Shetland Cow allows members to be able to take a heifer calf from each cow and still produce many cross bred animals if that is what the finances dictate.  It is really comforting to see that most of the traditional colours are secured into the breed but I still look forward to seeing a ‘rigged coo’ in the byre.

Thank you for keeping the faith and supporting the breed.  The Society is grateful for your continued belief and all your hard work.

Norman Leask,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society 

2013

Greetings from Shetland the home of, what I think, is the most powerful animal.  She kept the country people of Shetland alive with her vast capacity to produce great quantities of milk on very poor grazing.

We, in the native homeland, are indebted to you for your dedication in striving to ensure that this breed does not become extinct.

Unfortunately the number of calves registered is down this year. However I am hoping above hope that this is because you are cross breeding some of your animals.  As you know I believe that you may have to do this to make things more financially viable but please remember to ensure that you produce at least one heifer calf from each of your cows, thus securing the gene pool.

New herds have been discovered in some other Scottish Islands and also two new herds are being established in the Isle of Man.  Obviously these herds on other islands help to secure the breed in case of disease epidemics.

Moves are afoot to establish a herd in Australia where a herd of cattle are ready and waiting. The embryos are ready to ship as soon as semen is collected from bulls of the four sire lines.  This is a very exciting progression for Shetland Cattle

Funding is being sought for an ongoing semen collection of the best and most genetically important bulls.

Once again I thank you for your continued loyalty as we approach another year.

Norman Leask,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2014

I can hardly believe it will be a year soon since I was voted as your President.

The summer was very good and there was a good turnout of animals at the shows.  This winter has been very windy and very wet, however it is probably a good job that we have no control of the weather as it would be mayhem with everybody needing something different.

The E-bidding sale at Shetland Marts was a great success and I thank all those who put their animals to the sale and to those who signed in and purchased animals.

I thank the RBST and others for their help in dispersing the Montiaghs herd in Northern Ireland and those new breeders who have joined this small, elite family who are striving to save this unique breed from extinction.

It is very exciting to report the formation of the Zetralia Herd.  This was instigated and executed by the sheer determination of Dr Paddy Zakaria.

Once again I thank you for your continued loyalty as we approach another year.

Eleanor Arthur,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society

2015

Dear Member,

The majority of the UK suffered from seriously wet weather.  Old Shetland crofters believe 2015 was the hardest year in their lifetime to produce quality stock.

It is rare that local agricultural shows in Shetland are cancelled due to the weather and ground conditions.  This year unfortunately the Voe Agricultural Society had to capitulate.

I wish to take this opportunity to extend condolences to all those who have had their fields and homes devastated during the year.

It is very exciting to have 7 pure Shetland calves registered to the ZETRALIA herd in Australia.  For your information ZETLAND was the official name for Shetland until 1974  -  hence ZETRALIA.

Thank you for keeping the faith and helping preserve our native cattle.

Eleanor Arthur,
President,
Shetland Cattle Herd Book Society