The Lake District Tradition of Sheep Dog Trials

The sun shone and it was a beautiful day in Windermere, perfect for the annual Lake District Sheepdog Trials – a great event that English Lakes have sponsored for years. Watching farmers and their 4-legged companions doing their thing and keeping Lake District traditions alive brought back memories of Sunday Tea Time in the late 1970s when we would sit down as a family to watch ‘One Man and His Dog’.

Sheepdog Trials at Hill Farm

The Lake District Sheepdog Trials Association held their 115th Sheepdog Trials at Hill Farm, Ings, just off the A591, on 7th August. English Lakes are proud to be associated with this well run, fun event for locals and tourists alike, showcasing time-honoured skills and traditions.


It really was a fun-filled day with lots going on from Sheepdog Trials, Trails for Foxhounds, Terriers and Hound Puppies, Cumberland & Westmorland Wrestling, Demonstrations, craft and trade stands and a refreshment tent.


I was captivated by the skillful dogs and their handlers. They completely rely on each other to work the sheep. The tradition of Cumberland Wrestling dates back over one hundred years. Moves such as outside-stroke, swinging-hip and twist-off-the-breast are still being used today along with the traditional costume of britches worn over white tights – not a look you would rock on a night out!! Boys as young as five years old throw themselves into the ring, enjoying every moment.


Events like this happen throughout the summer and it’s not too late to get involved. Take a look to find out what’s on.

Photo Highlights 2014

The Lake District Shepherd Experience

Would you like to try your hand at being a Lake District shepherd?  English Lakes has teamed up with Lake District Sheepdog Experience to offer a package. You can learn all about the fantastic Border Collie and experience the joy of handling one of their friendly and fully trained sheepdogs under full instruction. Border Collies have been bred to work sheep in the Lake District since the 1700’s using genes dating back to their Persian ancestors and the hunter instincts of the wolf.

A two night package including a one hour session with the Lake District Sheep Dog Experience, Bed and Full English Breakfast plus Dinner on your first night staying at The Wild Boar.

Package Cost:

  • 1 Person – £245.00
  • 2 People – £330.00
  • 2 People (1 participant and 1 spectator) – £312.00

Rates based in a Classic Room, upgrades maybe available at the time of booking for a supplement to a Feature or Luxury Rooms. Full pre-payment at time of booking, non-refundable. Bookings are for midweek (Sunday to Thursday) only.

To Book, telephone: 08456 504 604

  • Written by: Maria Walker, Central Reservations Manager, English Lakes
  • Photography by: Angus Hosking, Student at Lakes School

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