GORDON Pratt, who has died at the age of 74, was well known in the Yorkshire Dales and beyond as a livestock auctioneer and valuer.
Born at Hawes in Wensleydale and educated locally, at the age of 17 he started as a junior at Hawes Mart and worked there for 42 years. In 1971 he took over Bedale Mart in partnership with his brother-in-law Norman F Brown. At the time he was also relief auctioneer at Ripon and Boroughbridge Marts. In the early 1970s he was involved in setting up the first Mule Gimmer lamb sales which are now such a feature of Hawes Mart.
He was a renowned valuer and conducted many valuations all over the north of England. He enjoyed a few moments of TV fame when he became involved with Barry Cockcroft, conducting Hannah Hauxwell’s farm sale. He also featured in an episode of the James Herriot series All Creatures Great and Small.
Following a quad bike accident and major heart surgery in 2004, his health gradually deteriorated and he was diagnosed with cancer last year. He died peacefully in his sleep at home on February 12.
His funeral service took place at Hawes Methodist Chapel and was packed with mourners who had travelled from many parts of the country to remember the man whose sheep and lamb sales they had attended over many years. He leaves a widow Mary, sons Martyn and Jonathan and three grandchildren.