• SSPF

William Torr | Inducted 1903

Foundational Shorthorn breeder, Leicester sheep breeder, noted livestock judge and farm implement inventor.

1808--1874 | Artist: Robert Wadsworth Grafton (1876-1936); original portrait by James R. Stuart


Impact & Accomplishments


One of the first portraits to hang in the Saddle & Sirloin Club was the likeness of William Torr, a foundation breeder and tenant farmer from Lincolnshire, England.


Torr began farming in 1833 and established Aylesby Manor in 1848. He added Rothwell Farm in 1854 and Riby Grove Farm in 1856, managing a total of 2,400 acres. Leicester sheep were his first interest, but Torr made his greatest reputation improving Shorthorn cattle, with bulls hired from Richard Booth.


A sale he conducted in 1875 earned tremendous profits and scattered his herd throughout the British Isles. William Torr was a popular judge and an inventor of various farm implements. His exemplary farming practices were recorded by the Journal of the Royal Agricultural Society. A member of the Royal Agricultural Society since 1839, he was elected to its council in 1857 and was a trustee of the Royal Smithfield Club.



Did You Know?

Torr was the inventor of many improvements in the details of farm management, of one of the first convex mould-board ploughs, of a farm gate (to which was awarded a prize at the Warwick meeting of the Royal Agricultural Society in 1859), of a spring wagon, and of a pig-trough. - Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 57 by Ernest Clarke




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