Our first Beardie “Razzle” (Rayre’s Rhapsody in Blue) arrived in 1979 and was soon joined by Tallie - between them they supplied the inspiration for our affix Talraz – and taught us a lot.
Razzle was bright and bouncy and a fun dog to train, introducing us to obedience, basic agility and working trials, and the Bearded Collie Club working tests – notably failing her Senior test by a whisker on both attempts (!) whereas Tallei became our first “proper” show dog and from her are descended all our current bunch of homebred Beardies.
Over the years there have been many highs and lows as my husband Mick and I share our lives with this wonderful breed, and we have been privileged to have owned and/or bred some memorable Beardies, including Ch Talraz Tamarisk, B.O.B at Crufts 2004, Talraz Paddy’s Pride for Lykath, BCC Senior Working Test qualifier, and Talraz Supertramp (Mirk) who attracted attention from all around the world with his talent for sheep herding. We currently have six Beardies in residence and they continue to keep us busy!
Showing is endlessly fascinating, and judging too, as the show rings shape the Beardies of the next generation. I have always maintained a strong interest in the working side, especially the original job of work which is herding, as I would not like to lose sight of the breed’s true appeal, as an intelligent and sound working companion.
I have judged regularly since the early 80’s and awarded CC’s in Bearded Collies for the first time at Birmingham National in 2002. Since then I have had the honour of judging at Championship level on several occasions. In the meantime I have also judged other breeds including Shetland Sheepdogs, Border Collies and Portuguese Water Dogs.
I was delighted to have been asked to judge in Germany, France, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Belgium and most recently Sweden and always take pleasure in meeting enthusiasts of the breed wherever they are.