Shearers aim for record

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    Shearers and woolhandlers put in a major effort to shear as many sheep as possible.

    SHEARERS were hoping to better a record of shearing more than 2210 sheep during a Riverton Lions Club fundraiser this week.

    Starting early on Tuesday, they set about shearing as many sheep as possible in one day at the Woodlands Research Station with the aim of breaking the record which was set in 2011.

    Sandy Gillet, the club’s first vice-president, said the 16 or so shearers would shear “until they’re finished” or until they were worn out.

    The average age of those who offered their services for free was at least in their late 50s, including three shearers who were in their 70s, Miss Gillet said.

    Impressively, the oldest woolhandler at the event, commonly known as a rousey, was 82 years old.

    Shearers on their way to setting a record.

    Support also came from family members who worked in the kitchen ensuring refreshments were available for everyone.

    She said the charity event had been held annually for the past 12 years.

    “It started when the wool prices were really low and it was costing more to shear the sheep than what the wool was worth.”

    She said money from the event would mostly go towards charities for local youth and the elderly.

    “The weather is always the biggest challenge,” Miss Gillet said as she pointed to some of the freshly cut wool which had to be put aside as it was still wet from recent rains.

    However, by the end of the day the 2011 record was still intact as 1993 sheep were shorn raising almost $9000, Miss Gillet said.

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