Some Influential Pembroke Males

Ch. Pemland Magnus

I will start with Mary and Stuart Magness' superb male Ch Pemland Magnus who as well as having a distinguished show record proved to have a lasting influence as a sire. No doubt I'll deal with him in greater detail in a future post but he was rather unusual in Pembroke terms in being what racehorse people call a 'sire of sires' in that several of his sons also proved to be good producers, including Ch Super Guy of Pemland, Am Ch Magnum of Vennwoods, Am Ch Pemland Maestro, Int Ch Pemland Music Master, Am Ch Revelmere Bring Me Joy, Am Ch Vennwoods Masterpiece, Int Ch Ryslip Puffin and the subject of this piece, Tweedbanks Portland Bill.

Ch. Pemland Music Master

Several of Magnus' daughters also bred on well and it soon became obvious that the combination of Magnus and his contemporary Ch Belroyd Nut Cracker was a very good one to have in a pedigree.

Portland Bill (named after that promontory which sticks out into the English Channel near Weymouth) was bred and owned by Eileen Douglas. He wasn't heavily shown but his breeding was full of quality. His dam was Cordach Modesty Blaize of Tweedbanks, a sister of Mary and Arthur Winsone's lovely Ch Cordach Lucinda, sired by (Aus Ch) Stormerbanks Robson before he emigrated, and out of a bitch line bred on the original Cordach mating of Ch Hildenmanor Crown Prince and Faine of Bulcorig.

He had mated a few local bitches before his big break in early 1988. Allan Taylor and Idris Jones had aimed to use Magnus on their lovely and beautifully bred Ch Belroyd Popinjay. When they arrived at Pemland, Magnus didn't want to know. They then remembered that there was a well-bred Magnus son living not too far away, and Eileen let them use Portland Bill. The result was an internationally successful litter including Ch B Shorelark (dam of Ch B Blackcap, Am Ch B Bronze Eagle, B Bee Catcher and B Woodchat), Am Ch B Seabird, NZ/Aus Ch B Stormbird and NZ Ch B Sanderling, all of whom proved good producers themselves.

This encouraged Allan and Idris to see how Bill would combine with other bitches. To Belroyd Tree Pipit he sired Ch B Cowslip (dam of B Goosander of Kassan, B Greenshank of Brynelli, Int Ch B Kingbird, Aus Ch B Knight Flyer and B Knightingale by Pemcader), Ch B Cornflower and Fin/Sw Ch B Corncockle. A repeat gave some more good producers in Am Ch B Dovekie, Am Ch B Dotterel and B Dawn Chorus of Foxydale (dam of Ch F Smart Guy), and there were some nice ones in a second repeat litter.

They also used him on his great-granddaughter Ch Bulcorig Natalma of Belroyd and from this came B Ice Dancer (grandmother of Ch Pemcader Belroyd Zeus etc). Finally Idris and Allan mated him to Ch Belroyd Rosefinch and a daughter, B. Umbretta, produced a champion in America. Mary Winsone mated her great Ch Cordach Victorian Secret to Portland Bill. Sadly for us in the UK, the best pup went to Australia and Aus Ch C Senator made a big impact there. The first person to use him had been Connie Lewis whose Bulcorigs feature strongly in his pedigree. She kept B Gem Of Gold, one of whose daughters started the Stadwens' current line and another produced three UK champions.

Finally to a Revelmere bitch he sired Am Ch King's Quoit of R and a sister who produced an Am Ch. So Portland Bill certainly had a big influence in many countries where Pembrokes are bred. Fate unquestionably has a big part to play in deciding which stud dogs leave a lasting mark and I can remember thinking that this applied more than most in the case of Portland Bill, who was fortunate enough to have no fewer than four UK champion bitches among his 'wives'.

It makes one wonder how many other well bred dogs, not necessarily big show winners, could leave a comparable legacy if only someone (preferably an influential breeder with top class bitches) had actually thought to give them a try!

Simon Parsons
On Facebook 23.02.2021