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BHW Show of The Year Blackpool 2018 03-02-18



BHW ‘Show of the Year’ Blackpool 2018.


Thousands of fanciers made the drive up to Blackpool in mid-January for the main event of the Show Racer calendar, the 46th British Homing World ‘Show of the Year’. Everyone anticipates and looks forward to this wonderful weekend in Blackpool, not only for their annual fill of ‘pigeon fun’, but mostly to meet up with good pigeon friends. This year’s event attacked a show entry of 2,000 birds and M. Koch had the job of judging the specials this time, including Best in Show. Best in Show over all at Blackpool was won by a four year old Show Racer red chequer cock owned by Harry & Tony Baugh of Hodnet in Shropshire and when I spoke to Tony after the event he said, that his late father, Harry, would have been thrilled to win Best in Show at Blackpool for the second time. Tony tells me the cock was bred by Alistair Tankard and is now named ‘Koster King’. This beautiful pigeon has only had two shows this season, winning first at the Midlands Show Racer Society show, which qualified him for Blackpool, where he has recorded the Baugh loft’s second ‘Best in Show’ win. T. & K. Mawhinney of Ireland have a wonderful family of blue pied racing pigeons and they won ‘Best Racer in Show’, previously winning ‘Best Racer’ at Blackpool in 2014, both with blue pied cocks.



Tony Baugh and his late father, Harry, started racing pigeons in the 1950’s and were very successful at club and Federation level, winner several firsts every season. They switched codes to Show Racers in 1960 and their first big performance was winning a trophy at the premier ‘Peoples Show’ in 1963. Harry passed away in 1992 and Tony still competes under the same partnership name of H. Baugh & Son. They have been a major force to compete with at National shows over the year, with the highlights being: 1975: BIS RP Old Comrades Show, 1984: BIS BHW Blackpool Show, 1995 BIS RP Old Comrades Show, 2016: BOS BHW Blackpool Show and 2018 BIS BHW Blackpool Show. Tony judges a lot and has judged at the Blackpool Show four times over the years, and he told me, he thinks he is the only founder member of the Midlands Show Racer Society left in the club. He only keeps a small team of Show Racers in his 22ft x 8ft loft, which has three sections and an aviary. Tony feeds a 50/50 mixture of ‘Young Bird’ and ‘Channel’ mixtures and uses ‘Loft White’ on the loft floors after cleaning out on a daily basis. He has no secrets behind his success and the birds have no special management build up before the big shows, he just looks after the birds well for 52 weeks of the year. No stock birds are kept, with all the breeding being done from his 12 pairs of Show Racers and his favourite colours are powder blue and blue chequer.


John and Alice Bell of Scotland won ‘Supreme Champion’ at the Blackpool Show for a record sixth time. There winning pigeon was a wonderful sliver blue hen, now named ‘Mary’s Dream Supreme’ after John’s late mother, Mary and she won Best in Show at the Kingdom of Fife Show (506 birds) to qualify for her place al Blackpool. The Bell show loft has had tremendous success at the Blackpool Show over the years winning: ‘Supreme Champion’ six times, including winning it over the last three years on the trot, Reserve ‘Supreme Champion’ five times, ‘Best in Show’ twice and Reserve ‘Best in Show’ twice. ‘Mary’s Dream Supreme’ is a half-sister to ‘Bell’s Young Supreme’, the Blackpool ‘Supreme Champion’ in 2016. A fantastic achievement! I spoke to John after the Blackpool show and he told me that they had a bad start to the current show season, with Alice going in and out of hospital over the period of the first three major shows, but once she got back in to her roll of the pigeon management they won BIS at the RPRA Southern Region Show (six firsts), BIS at the Kingdom of Fife Show (six firsts) and BIS at the Black Country Show (two firsts). John and Alice had two class winners at the Blackpool Show, with a young blue chequer hen winning: Best Hen, Best Young Bird, Reserve ‘Best in Show’ and the loft won ‘Fancier Gaining Best Points’.



Class winners at the 2018 BHW Blackpool ‘Show of the Year’ were: 1 (105 birds) Petty & Crawford: 2 (104 birds) J. K. & J. D. Lynn: 3 (79 birds) Petty & Crawford: 4 (84 birds) Mark Hylands: 5 (68 birds) Mark Hylands: 6 (71 birds) Kerr & Davidson: 7 (89 birds) John & Alice Bell: 8 (95 birds) John & Alice Bell: 9 (49 birds) Rouke & Christie: 10 (50 birds) Petty & Crawford: 11 (49 birds) Rouke & Crawford: 12 (48 birds) Petty & Crawford: 13 (37 birds) P. & K. Nelson: 14 (38 birds) Petty & Crawford: 15 (43 birds) Petty & Crawford: 16 (45 birds) Coutts Brothers: 17 (60 birds) Annette Wiggins: 18 (78 birds) John Barnes: 19 (56 birds) John Robilliard: 20 (61 birds) Coutts Brothers: 21 (65 birds) R. & J. Thresher: 22 (62 birds) Keelie Wright: 23 (60 birds) George Tytler Jnr: 24 (17 birds) David Fussey: 25 (16 birds) McCord & Turpie: 26 (32 birds) Aidan Winter: 27 (28 birds) G. A. Lonsdale & son: 28 (57 birds) T. & K. Mawhinney: 29 (52 birds) J. Mackie & son: 30 (59 birds) Aidan Winter: 31 (56 birds) M. & J. Barnes: 32 (40 birds) A. & G. & A. Williams: 33 (42 birds) E. Balmer: 34 (32 birds) George Tytler Jnr: 35 (30 birds) Aidan Winter: 36 (38 birds) Aidan Winter: 37 (39 birds) April Kean.


John and Alice Bell have two 24ft x 8ft lofts, which have a nice 3ft wire flight running along the front so the birds can get out in the weather and bath, and these are cleaned out by Alice twice a day. John works long hours and says a lot of loft management is down to his partner, which includes cleaning out the lofts as many times as ten times a day on the build up to big shows. He maintains this cleaning out is very important as the birds don’t have to be lifted and pulled about to clean their feet on basketing for the shows. Alice told me that if the bird’s feet are not cleaned on basketing day they look nice and powdery and not an unnatural pink. The birds are bathed at the beginning of the week and no litter is used on the loft floors. John mixes his own corn and this has a big maple pea content, and the birds are never fed condition seed. The pigeons are never fed maize prior the going to show, as Alice maintains it makes the candidates loose and messy in the pen. The twelve pairs of birds are mated up in late February as the partners like to enter two open Society shows which are after the Blackpool show at the back end of January. No stock birds are kept as all birds are shown and about 60 young birds are bred each, which are brought down to about twelve just before the show season begins. John told me, ‘I enjoy judging and have no favourite colour, when judging or in my own loft. I just love good quality Show Racers, whatever their colour! Showing is very hard work and to get a team ready for a big National event it can take up to a month to get them right. Our best ever Show Racer is the Darren Gibbons blue chequer cock and although we don’t keep stock birds, he is our main breeder, being the sire of many winners. I’ve lost count of the many open shows he has won and he has also won several times at the RP ‘Old Comrades’ Show and the BHW Blackpool Show. I would like to finish this article by saying how important Alice’s hard work is to our good success with our Show Racers. She is a wonderful pigeon fancier’. John & Alice Bell own one of the top Show Racer lofts in the UK at this time.


Well that’s my annual report for the 2018 BHW Blackpool Show! Congratulations to Tony Baugh and John and Alice on yet another great Blackpool success! I can be contacted on telephone number: 01372 463480 and email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.