A farming family from Redruth has been honoured with a national award for its cattle.

The Penhalveor herd, owned by Ashley and Hilary Wood of Redruth in Cornwall, has been recognised as the Most Improved Herd of Stabiliser cattle in England for 2014.

Ashley and Hilary bought Penhalveor Farm in 1977, following a move from London.

The farm consists of 60 acres of permanent grassland at approximately 500 feet above sea level. 

With a focus on breeding all their own replacements, the Penhalveor herd has been 'closed' since 1994. Biosecurity and genetic diversity has been a priority and therefore artificial insemination has been used extensively, especially in the spring calving portion of the herd.

Following the trial of many continental sires on the farm, the Simmental breed was selected in order to develop a herd with good growth rates, mothering ability, milkiness and temperament.

The farm started its organic conversion in 2007 and thus the size of the herd was halved to around 40 cows and followers. 

In 2008, the Woods started performance recording, encouraged by the Stabiliser Cattle Company which is keen to monitor the genetic progress achieved in Stabiliser herds.

The Penhalveor herd stands comfortably within the top ten per cent of the breed for Beef Value.