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Owners hoping for shear delight when sheep are shown at Bridgnorth show

By Rory Smith | Bridgnorth | Bridgnorth entertainment | Published:

They are often mistaken for dogs, but the owners of these unusual sheep are hoping their flock can be centre of attention at this year's Burwarton Show.

Hayley and Phil Garrod with their Valais Blacknose Sheep

Having acted as ring bearers at their owner's wedding last month, it is set to be a busy period for the Valais Blacknose Sheep that are sure to be a crowd pleaser at the county's largest one-day event.

Phil and Hayley Garrod, along with sons Oscar and Joe and daughter Immi, keep a flock of the fluffy animals and have been invited to showcase them at the event in Cleobury North on August 1.

Having spotted a photo of the sheep in 2015, it took 12 months of research before the family agreed to purchase three ewes and a ram to start the herd, which has now grown to more than 60 strong.

Hayley and Phil Garrod with their Valais Blacknose Sheep

Phil and Hayley, who married in June, even had six star at their wedding.

"They have earned themselves the title of the world's cutest sheep, and it's not hard to see why," they said.

"They are tremendously inquisitive and love human company.

"We married in June and six Valais sheep starred at our wedding including two lambs, complete with handmade flower crowns, acting as our ring bearers during the ceremony.

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“Even the wedding cake featured edible life-sized Valais lambs."

Hayley and Phil Garrod with their Valais Blacknose Sheep

Highly popular among Swiss farmers, they came to the UK in 2014 and have grown in popularity, recently featuring on TV in This Farming Life and Countryfile.

Phil said: "With them being a rare breed they are bred solely for other breeders or for pets so nothing ends up on a plate, much to Hayley’s delight."

Hayley added: “All have names and each has their own character. We are delighted to have been invited to showcase them at the Burwarton Show this year and look forward to offering cuddles with some of our spring lambs as well as the chance to meet our fully grown ewes and rams."

Organised by the Burwarton & District Agricultural Society, the Burwarton Show is taking place at the showground in Cleobury North on the B4364 on August 1.

Rory Smith

By Rory Smith
Reporter - @rorysmith_star

Senior reporter based at the Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley, Telford.

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