An 18-year-old auctioneer from Worcestershire will kickstart a fundraising mission at Dingwall Mart later this month in a bid to raise funds for rural charities.
Jack Walton aims to visit 25 livestock marts from Dingwall to Truro in Cornwall and raise money by auctioning one pen of lambs in each mart.
He is raising funds for Scots rural charity RSABI and its equivalent south of the border – the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Fund (RABI).
The six-week fundraising feat, which will result in Mr Walton travelling more than 1,000 miles, starts at Dingwall Mart on Tuesday, July 19, at 12.30pm.
The budding young auctioneer will auction off one pen of fat lambs and the market’s commission will be donated to his fundraising pot.
Other stops along the way include Forfar Mart on Wednesday, July 20, and United Auctions in Stirling on Thursday, July 21. The journey ends on September 7 at Truro Livestock Centre.
Mr Walton, who is the grandson of renowned Suffolk breeder Michael Walton from Roseden Farm in Northumberland, has been helping out at Worcester Livestock Mart for the past three years. He plans to start a course in rural land management at the Royal Agricultural University in Cirencester in September.
He said: “For as long as I can remember I have loved attending livestock markets with my grandfather. I was always itching to have a go on the rostrum.
“This seemed like the perfect way to, not only meet people within the industry and gain knowledge and experience, but to raise money for two excellent charities in the process.
“I am very grateful to Dingwall & Highlands Mart for getting involved and giving me the opportunity to auction a pen of lambs, while also generously donating their commission to the charities.”
Dingwall and Highland Marts managing director Ian Tolmie said: “We are delighted to welcome Jack to Dingwall. It is fantastic to see Jack’s passion for livestock auctioning and I wish him every success with the rest of his journey.”
Mr Walton’s trip has been sponsored by the Three Counties Agricultural Society so that all funds raised are donated to the charities.
Collection buckets will be available at all of the marts he visits and a fundraising page has been set up online at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/JacksLivestockMarketJourney.