A young pigeon fancier is already ruffling the feathers of older competitors.
Harrison Bamber, 14, has more than 100 birds in his loft which is housed in the garden of his parents’ home at Stalmine.
One of his birds, a mealy cock, won the youngster a highly commended certificate at the recent North West Homing Union Show at Ribbleton, Preston.
The show attracts entries from pigeon fanciers from not just the region but from all over the country.
Harrison, a member of Stalmine Homing Society, has also had a string of successes racing pigeons, including being the winner of a west coast federation event which involved 1,700 birds.
Every day is an early start for Harrison, who is up at 7am to feed, water and muck out his feathered friends before heading off to school at St Aidan’s CE Technology College, Preesall.
This dedication extends to racing every Saturday during the season – from April to September – with logistical support provided by dad Kevin who is stepping up from the sidelines and is set to race for the first time this year.
Harrison, and his cousin Callum, 15, were inspired to take up pigeon racing by their late grandfather Jim Bamber.
Harrison said: “I used to help him feed the birds and he taught me how to handle them. I’ve always loved animals and thought this would be the perfect sport. I bought my first one for £45 when I was 10, with money I’d saved up from washing the pots, and it’s gone from there.
“I really enjoy training them and then seeing them come home, especially from the long flights.
“I’ve won a few races and was the youngest person to win the Federation Race where my bird beat 1,700 others.
“One day I hope to enter the million dollar Barcelona race but not for a few years yet.”