The Hereford breed of cattle developed from the early 1700's, becoming a closed Herd Book in 1878. It is famous for its consistent high quality fleshing from low quality food inputs, in a variety of management conditions. Traditional Hereford cattle are recognised by the Hereford Cattle Society and are defined by the fact that their parentage can be traced in every generation back to the 1878 Herd Book of Hereford Cattle (The British Herd Book). This section of the Hereford Herd Book is now in a state of renewal conducive with the present economic conditions. Since 1995 (Volume 125) such cattle have been marked thus [*] in the Herd Book.
Today the Club herd numbers about five hundred females, within twenty six tribes, in about forty-five herds. The tribes are diverse, and some are split into several families; most are reasonably widespread, but some of the families are in danger of extinction through a lack of diversity or simply a lack of numbers.
Through AI our bull selection is very varied. We have many bulls from the early days of widespread AI use, some going back to the early 1960's, others are from more recent times. This enables the club to use a much wider genetic base than many of our other native breeds; a consequence of the influence of our illustrious past.