Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

United Auctions teams up with Stirling County RFC to develop club rugby

1st July, 2014 by admin

United Auctions, Stirling County Rugby Club

United Auctions are stepping up their support of club rugby by becoming the new main sponsor of Stirling County RFC.

Scotland’s leading livestock auctioneers, who have recently been named as one Scotland’s top SMEs by the London Stock Exchange, have completed a three-year deal to partner with Stirling County, one of Scotland’s top premiership rugby clubs.

The deal recognises the long-term association UA has in Stirling and with their local rugby club as well as their rural and farming connection. The company’s sales manager and auctioneer Matt Stevenson is a former 1st XV player with Stirling County who went on to referee at the highest level.

Neil McLean, Group Joint Managing Director of UA, said: “The company has operated in Stirling for many years and has always had a strong link with Stirling County. We are very proud to be the new main sponsor for Stirling County as it reflects our local and rural connection with the Club and builds on our support of their British and Irish cup campaign.”

Kevin Robertson, President of Stirling County said: “We are absolutely delighted that such a well-known and respected local company has taken over as main sponsor of Stirling County. This support from United Auctions will allow the Club to further build on its successful rugby development programme across all levels and enable Stirling County’s teams to compete at the highest levels. We look forward to working with United Auctions to bring further success to Bridgehaugh Park.”

Stirling County has more than 100 senior playing members and in excess of 300 juniors regularly playing the sport at Bridgehaugh Park. The Club’s 1st XV play in the top tier BT Premiership and famous internationalists who have worn County colours include George Graham, Allister Hogg, Ian Jardine, Alastair Kellock, Kenny Logan, Kevin McKenzie, James McLaren, John Barclay, Richie Gray and David Denton.


Notes to editor

  • Picture caption: Neil McLean and Matt Stevenson of United Auctions with Club President Kevin Robertson

Issued by JK Consultancy on behalf of United Auctions. For further information, please contact Jenny Kumar on 07989 557198 /

About United Auctions

United Auctions (UA) are Scotland’s leading livestock auctioneers and procurement specialists and operate a network of different auction markets across Scotland, including Stirling, Huntly, Lairg, Dalmally, Tiree, Islay, South Uist and an area office and lairage facility at Oban. The company conducts auctions of both commercial and pedigree livestock, including the world-famous Stirling Bull Sales, and provides farm-to-farm and farm-to-abattoir procurement services. In 2013, UA was named in the London Stock Exchange’s ‘1000 Companies to Inspire Britain’.

About Stirling County RFC

Stirling County is one of Scotland’s top rugby clubs with the 1st XV play in the top tier BT premiership. Their Under-18 and Under-16 sides compete in the National Youth Leagues, while County’s Women’s team play at the top level in the Premier League. Stirling County’s 2nd XV compete in the National Reserve League One and the development 3rd XV play in the Caledonian Midland League. County’s Under-15s play in the age-grade Caledonia League, and the Club’s Midi Rugby (S1 and S2) and Mini Rugby (Primary 3 to 7) teams have a full programme of fixtures and tournaments. Stirling County has also forged strong links with local communities and schools and through the club’s outreach rugby development programme has introduced rugby to young players from all local areas and backgrounds who are encouraged to play rugby at Bridgehaugh Park.

Highland Wagyu in game-changing partnership with Netherton Angus

13th June, 2014 by admin
Highland Wagyu, Netherton Angus, Aberdeen-Angus

Mohsin Altajir of Highland Wagyu flanked by (l) William McLaren Snr and (r) William McLaren Jnr.

Highland Wagyu has announced a groundbreaking partnership with internationally renowned Aberdeen Angus breeders W & D McLaren Ltd of Netherton Angus that will create a game-changing Angus superherd.

In the next five years, beef breeding company Highland Wagyu is set to invest millions into a new Angus superherd, aiming for 1000 head of cattle, in their quest to be at the top of the Angus beef industry and the pedigree-breeding world.

The innovative move includes the private purchase of a majority of the Netherton herd and to run it from both Netherton Farm and Blackford Farms under the guidance of W & D McLaren with William McLaren Jr taking charge of the day-to-day running of Highland Wagyu’s Angus herd, which runs under the Mohmar prefix.

William is the fourth generation of the McLaren Angus breeding family, which this year celebrates 90 years of dedicated Angus breeding. The breeders have sold Angus genetics to every continent in the last two years alone.

Mohsin Altajir who runs Highland Wagyu with his wife Martine Chapman, said: “We don’t believe in doing anything half heartedly. We bring in the professionals and make sure we’re the best. It’s worked for our Wagyu cattle. We did what we set out to be, we are the largest in the UK and the Wagyu are so popular that top chefs are lining up to put their names on our Wagyu cattle.

“We’ve always recognised the importance of the Aberdeen Angus breed and after long and careful deliberation, we thought the best way forward is to align ourselves with the best and we found that in W & D McLaren and Netherton Angus.

“We already have some of the best Angus foundation females in our 300-strong herd and, with the international know-how of William, the resources and scale of the Highland Wagyu operation, we can build up an elite herd with genetics to cater to the markets and revive the story of Scotland being home to the best beef in the world.

“The dream is to line both sides of the A9 with black cattle from Dunblane to Gleneagles and make Scotland a destination for any Angus buyer in the world.”

George McCulloch will continue to be herd manager for Highland Wagyu’s other breeds, which include 300 head of Fullblood Wagyu, 200 Shorthorns and a fold of Highlanders to convey the Scottish brand.

Mr McLaren Jr will retain a number of females and recipients, running the Netherton and Mohmar herds together.

William McLaren Jr of Netherton Farms said: “Our family has always embraced innovation, being the first to weigh cattle in 1958 and one of the first to sell the entire adult part of our herd and this is another first with Highland Wagyu. The partnership benefits the Angus breed and the industry to build scale and diversity to breed lines for higher marbling, easy calving and fleshing and to provide both the beef and pedigree breeding that the world needs. It’s breaking new ground to unite the expertise of Netherton and Highland Wagyu in order to produce the best beef in the country.”


Issued by JK Consultancy on behalf of Highland Wagyu. For further information and photographs, please contact Jenny Kumar on 07989 557198 /

Notes to Editor

  • Picture caption – Mohsin Altajir of Highland Wagyu flanked by (l) William McLaren Snr and (r) William McLaren Jnr.
  • Netherton Farm extends to 330 acres and Netherton has been one of the top herds in the country for the past 30 years.
  • William McLaren Sr and Jr have served as Past Presidents of the Angus Society. William Sr is in the Angus hall of fame in the US and has been awarded the Hugh Watson Memorial trophy for lifetime achievement with Aberdeen Angus and the Sir William Young Award.
  • David Leggat of United Auctions carried out the cattle valuation for the partnership.

Highland Wagyu is a pedigree beef company, breeding premium Japanese Wagyu, Aberdeen Angus and Beef Shorthorn cattle with a mission to produce the best beef in the world from our 25,000-acre estate farm in Perthshire, Scotland. Established by husband and wife Mohsin Altajir and Martine Chapman in 2011, our ethos of quality, respect and precision underpins everything we do. Highland Wagyu sells directly to chefs. It is the largest producer of Wagyu cattle in the UK and on course to be the biggest in Europe.

Scottish Office calls on SPADAC for skill test model

4th July, 2013 by admin

The apprenticeship scheme run by the Scottish Painting and Decorating Apprenticeship Council (SPADAC) has been asked to share best practice with the Scottish Office.

Ian Rogers, SPADAC’s Employers’ Secretary, met Fiona Farr of the Youth Employability & Skills Division at the Scottish Office last week to discuss the skills test system.

Apprentices in Scotland must pass a skills test towards the end of their fourth year in order to qualify with a Modern Apprenticeship.

Currently, apprentices studying in England do not sit a skills test to prove their competence.

The UK Government’s Department of Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) requested the meeting as a result of The Richard Review, an independent report into the future of apprenticeships in England published last year.

Ian Rogers, who is also Chief Executive of the Scottish Decorators’ Federation which administer the scheme, said:

“This is a vote of confidence in the Scottish apprenticeship system and we’re delighted that SPADAC is being recognised as a model scheme.”

As a partner of the SPADAC scheme, CITB’s Stephen Sheridan, Recruitment and Careers Manager, was invited by Mr Rogers to attend the meeting.

Further meetings are to be arranged with BIS directly.

UA launches £500,000 fund for new entrant farmers

18th June, 2013 by admin

United Auctions (UA) are launching their own loan scheme to help young farmers start up in livestock farming today (Tuesday, June 18th 2013).

Scotland’s leading livestock auctioneers have secured the £500,000 fund as part of their long-standing livestock financing arrangement with Bank of Scotland.

It will address one of the key barriers to entry to agriculture by providing the chance for new entrants to access much-needed finance at start-up for purchasing livestock.

The loan can then be repaid with the sale of the animals.

UA’s initiative was inspired by and intends to complement the Scottish Government’s new entrants’ scheme, which aims to work with industry to lower barriers to entry and get more young people working in the food and farming sectors.

And the company has already provided support for two new entrants who were successful in gaining starter farm tenancies through the Forestry Commission Scotland’s Starter Unit Initiative.

David Leggat, Executive Chairman of UA, said: “It’s crucial to invest in the next generation of farmers as a priority. This new fund allows us to play our part in making it easier for talented, young people to gain access to capital and start a career in livestock farming.”

Rural Affairs Secretary, Richard Lochhead MSP, said: “New and young farmers are key to the future of the industry in Scotland. We need their enthusiasm, new ideas and fresh approach to compliment the great work that already goes on within the sector.

“The rural economy is crucial to Scotland and the Scottish Government is committed to attracting more young people into agriculture. I welcome United Auctions’ announcement, they are clearly backing up their words with action. I hope this encourages other businesses to do the same. This funding will complement the £2 million package of support that I have provided and will help new entrants establish a sound footing in the industry.”

George Lyon MEP said: “Securing support for new entrants and young farmers has been at the centre of our negotiations on the future CAP in Brussels over the last six weeks and we are making good progress in securing a substantive package of financial support to help get more young people into our industry.

“United Auctions are to be congratulated on their new scheme, which will provide a financial leg up to young farmers trying to buy breeding stock.”

He continued: “Ensuring that new entrants get access to vital financial support such as this is essential to the future of Scotland’s farming industry.”

Nigel Miller, President of NFU Scotland said: UA’s bold initiative has broken through one of the growing barriers that lock new entrants out of farming. The finance package for funding livestock creates an exciting new opportunity for our future farmers to establish and grow and can breathe new life into the sector.”



Issued on behalf of United Auctions by JK Consultancy. For further information please contact:

Jenny Kumar on 07989 557198 or

United Auctions

United Auctions (UA) are Scotland’s leading livestock auctioneers and procurement specialists and operate a network of different auction markets across Scotland, including Stirling, Huntly, Lairg, Dalmally, Tiree, Islay, South Uist and an area office and lairage facility at Oban. The company conducts auctions of both commercial and pedigree livestock, including the world-famous Stirling Bull Sales (previously known as the Perth Bull Sales) and provides farm-to-farm and farm-to-abattoir procurement services.

To find out more about United Auctions, follow us on Facebook.

The Scottish Decorators’ Federation gets an online re-decoration

30th January, 2013 by admin

2013 sees a brand new online look for the SDF as it launches its new website and embraces social media networking with a Facebook page and YouTube Channel.

The new-look website – at the same address: – has been completely re-designed to be as clear, clean and user-friendly as possible.

The navigation is simplified with a new kiosk-style format so users can instantly find the information they want.

And there is more colour and images that reflect the Federation’s visual industry.

Customers looking to contact an SDF member can access the updated search function in the  ‘Find A Decorator’ section while prospective members can review all the membership benefits and apply online through the ‘Join the SDF’ kiosk.

Members will need a username and password to access the members’ area control panel that includes important, regularly updated information on education & training, apprenticeships, law & legislation, events, and resources such as the SDF newsletter, Decorating Matters Magazine and the SDF app.

Social media

The SDF is embracing social media as a new way to engage with their members, the industry and interest groups in different ways. Users can read the latest SDF-related and industry news, find out about new products and SDF offers as well as discover the range of the SDF’s activities and how members can get involved and make a difference to the industry.

Take a look at and ‘like’ the new Facebook page –

The SDF’s dedicated YouTube Channel will host their online videos via the Facebook page and website.

Ian Rogers, Chief Executive of the SDF, said: “After receiving a number of creative proposals, the board plumped for vibrant, Glasgow-based company Pocapoc Creative who just got what we were looking for. Our PR consultant Jenny Kumar of JK Consultancy managed the project and since their appointment in August, we’ve been working hard on our online presence to make sure it’s fit for purpose and appeals to our different audiences.

“We’re embarking on a new and exciting online journey and hope you’ll support us by giving constructive feedback and spreading the word.”

Any members wishing to contribute images for the website of interesting projects should send jpegs no larger than 1mb to and include the project details in the email.