The History of CORYDON

John, Barbara & Miranda Blake - Telephone +44(0) 1636626321 - Email:


It’s official, the Dog World top Rough Collie for 2016 is Tas (Ch Corydon The Ringleader). He went to just eight Shows during the year, at which he won five major awards. He must be one of the least shown dogs to have won this Top of the Breed Award. And he has no Stop. Must be very galling to those who have been brainwashed into believing the Stop is the most important point for a Rough Collie. May I remind those people that lack of Stop was never a fault. But Cow Hocks, Receding, Bumpy Skulls and Low Set Ears were all classed as very serious faults. Maybe those judges who think a lack of Stop is a disqualifying fault, will change their minds and put more emphasis on penalising exhibits with the above faults. I am not holding my breath though.

No more shows this year so I look back on what has been a very successful year. Our dogs have won five Challenge Certificates with three Best of Breed and a very rare Group win. And it is the winner of that Group that I really need to talk about.

Taz (Ch Corydon The Ringleader) was one of nine puppies in his dams second litter. It seems strange that as soon as I picked him up, while he was still wet, I said to Miranda “This one could be the best we have ever bred”. I have not changed my mind since that day in February 2014. He has always had that something extra to make him a great dog. For me he is the best Rough Collie I have ever seen. I know some would like him to have a stop. But this was never a listed fault in the old Breed Standards, and if he had a deep stop he would not have his wonderful oblique eye which gives him that far away expression, which I have not seen on a Rough Collie for more than 50 years. I must say to those modern-day judges who condemn him for this supposed fault, and prefer exhibits who are cow hocked, straight shouldered and bad movers, you will never breed a good, sound dog if you persist in going down that road. For those who are new to the game and have never seen the old Breed Standards with their list of faults, those points were listed as serious faults.

We have now made up 25 Champions in this country and more than 80 World Wide. All of them have been sound, all have moved well and all have been typical Rough Collies, that conformed to the Breed Standard. I have a feeling that I just might be breeding on the right lines. Also all have at least one parent bred by us.

We will not be showing Taz too often as we have no intention of beating Frosty’s breed record. I just hope that he sires some exceptional puppies that will put him down as one of the great Rough Collies, like Ch Eden Emerald and Christopher of the long since past. And if you do not know who they were, buy my book and you will learn all about them. Plus some other essentials, like how to go over a dog.

November the 27th was our last show of the year. This was the Collie Association Ch Show. The Dog judge was Mrs J Oliver. She awarded Ch Corydon The Ringleader the Dog CC, his fourth. This was the third time one of our exhibits has won a CC at this show in the last seven years. I have supported this show since 1958, but I think that this will be the last time. Not a show I enjoy as the atmosphere is rather poor.

Because of a problem I have had to change my Email to the following Evidently someone was using my old address. There are some nasty crooks out in the World. It is all a nuisance and has wasted a lot of my time.

Miranda took Heather (Mejola My Blue heaven for Corydon) to the London & Provincial Collie Club Ch Show on the 20th November. She was placed Reserve in the Open Bitch Class, but won the Best Veteran Bitch award. I cannot believe she is over seven years of age. At the same show Maxine Mellish won the dog CC with Demelewis Catchmydrift. He is the litter brother to our Demelewis Catch The Breeze For Corydon and Demelewis Catch The Blues for Corydon.

Sunday 30th October was Midland Counties Ch Show. We did rather well

under judge Pat Lister of Smooth Collie fame. Taz ( Corydon The Ringleader) won the Open Dog Class, Then the Dog CC and then Best of Breed. So he is now Champion Corydon The Ringleader (subject to KC confirmation).  Heather ( Mejola My Blue heaven for Corydon) won the Open Bitch Class and the Bitch CC. Second in this biggest Class of the day was Corydon Victoriana for Demelewis. And Corydon Victoria Rose at Fiocara won the Junior Bitch Class. Corydon The Ringmaster kept the flag flowing by winning third prize in the very big Pastoral Puppy Stakes Class. I consider we had quite a good day. Especially with a new Champion. Number 25 in the kennel for us. This is obviously a lucky show for us as it is the third time we have done the rare double CC win.

I have done some research on Taz’s win at Darlington. I can find just seven male Rough Collies to have won a Group since the War. Not the second but the First World War. Seems a pity as there have been some excellent Rough Collie males over the years that did not get to win such an award. Maybe our luck will change in the next few years, but the breed has to get back to basics before this can happen. Please start breeding sound dogs and stop going for the modern fashion of fluffy coats and deep stops. They are just too ugly, with no elegance at all.

We have had some bad luck lately as we have lost two of our pets. First to go was Ch Corydon Once in A Blue Moon. He started to look ill on the Wednesday evening and died before lunch on the Thursday the 30th September. We suspect a cancer bursting, but it was all too quick to even get him to the vet. Then two days later we lost Aqualita Classic Charm At Corydon. Probably old age as she was nearly 13 and a half. We still have her brother and he is full of life.

Saturday the 17th September was a day to remember. The first show after our trip down under, Darlington Championship Show. Frank Kane was judging the breed for the first time at this level. He drew an excellent entry of 138 exhibits. Taz (Corydon The Ringleader) won the Open Dog Class and the Dog CC. He then went on to win Best of Breed. The Group was judged by Steve Hall who placed Taz first in the Group. Only the fourth male Rough Collie to win this award in more than 50 years. He was not placed in the Best in Show ring. Mr Kane seemed to like our type of Collie as Taz’s son Corydon The Ringmaster won the Minor Puppy Dog Class. Taz’s sire Corydon The Persuader,was also the sire of the winner of the Limit Dog Class Mejola I Am Persuasive who is out of Corydon Maid For Mejola. Second in the Open Class to Taz was Karafaye Black Quillian, who is by Demelewis Winter Moon over Corydon  out of Corydon La Favorita Avec Karafaye. His owner Lorraine Quince also had success with her Karafaye Black Beauty placed second in the Junior bitch Class, she is by Aus Ch Corydon Winds of Victory out of La Favorita. Ch Corydon Handsome Hero and Ch Corydon Il Supremo were also Group 1 winners. Not bad for us to have three out of the four successful dogs. Keeping the successful line going is our main aim and here we are going strong because the grandsire of Taz is Int Ch Corydon Catch Me Driftin. Corydon The Ringmaster is the fifteenth generation of Corydon bred dogs, starting off with Ch Corydon Quinault.

2nd September we had to take the sad decision to have Mia (Corydon Fancy Me) put to sleep as she had gone off her back legs to the extent that she could no longer walk or even stand properly. She though has proved to be one of the great dams in the breed as 5 of her puppies became Champions and 3 of them became International Champions. Her son Int Ch Corydon Catch Me Driftin has become the biggest ever winner in his adopted country of Finland.

Thanks to Lene, who was looking after the gang while we were away. Three of our girls have visited the boys, so hopefully we shall have puppies in October. The matings are interesting and the future exciting.

We are back home after three wonderful weeks down under. What are we doing wrong? Mim Bester in Tasmania has the best Smooth Collies I have seen for years. They make our best very second rate. She also has some Rough Collies that would win their titles in this country. They were so correct for the Breed Standard.

No shows at present due to lack of coat on all of our clan. We did have a lovely trip to Germany at the end of June. I judged Shelties and had a near record entry of 50. They were all very nice and all were sound. All had good harsh straight coats. So refreshing to see. Miranda judged the Smooth Collies plus the puppies and veterans in the Roughs as their entry was too high for the main judge to go over all of them. She was rather pleased though that her choice for veteran bitch won the overall top prize of Best of Breed. Now Miranda and I are off for a three week hike down under starting on the 2nd August. Lene will be in charge while we are away. With some help from Julian. We plan to see friends in Hong Kong, Tasmania and New Zealand and take trips to see the scenery while we are there. We are still waiting for bitches to come into season. No doubt they will wait until we are away before obliging.

11th June was Three Counties Ch Show. The judge was the well known All-rounder Mr A Brace. We had a good day as Taz won the big Limit Dog Class and then the Reserve CC. Evie won the Open Bitch Class, but got no further. Second in this quite big class was Corydon La Caprita at Phreelancer owned by Lene. The Reserve Bitch CC was a daughter of Riff. Best puppy was the Newton’s Corydon Victoria Rose at Fiocora. The following day Miranda judged Best in Show at the London Collie Club Ch Show. In Finland Corydon Conqueror won the dog CC under Minna Maninnen. this was Minna’s first judging appointment.

The last weekend in May was the time for our trip to Finland to celebrate the 20th anniversary of ACP our fan club in that Country. We had a wonderful time going over their dogs. We go over there every 2 or 3 years to assess the dogs they have. To compete they have to have a minimum of 25% Corydon in their pedigree. They got together over 60 this time. It might have been more but their summer holiday was about to start. The Collies were wonderful. Not a wrong coat in sight. All had straight harsh coats. So all were elegant, all could move properly and I only found one straight shoulder. I just wish I could have taken all those people who seem to like the hairy sheep with me so that they could see what they were missing. They must be doing something right because the Registrations for Rough Collies for 2015 was 554, while the registrations in this country were 734. But their population is just 5 million. Ours is nearing 70 million. Proof I think that the general public want a nice, easy to keep Rough Collie that in some ways resembles “Lassie”.

The bitch we made best in show was just 8 months old. A daughter of Percy, who still remembers me, she reached 9 months yesterday (5th June) and won the Best bitch award so was old enough to win her first CC. Many more to come I think. Percy was Best of Breed and then went on to Best Veteran in Show. He is quite some dog. He is now the biggest ever winning Rough Collie in that country, and to think we gave him away when he was five years old.

We have bred another Champion. This time it is Corydon Victorious who last week end became a South African Champion. Not as easy as it sounds as he has to win CCs in many different states in that country. So SA Ch Corydon Victorious is Corydon Champion No. 81.

Miranda spent the weekend of the 20th May in Scotland. First was the Scottish Kennel Club Show with Mr A Wight the judge. Corydon The Ring Leader won the Limit Dog Class and then the Reserve Dog CC. We were well pleased because he had been bathed and stripped right out. Demelewis Catch The Breeze For Corydon was placed third in the Open Bitch Class. The next day was the Scottish Collie Club Championship Show. We did not enter Taz but Evie was entered under Mrs J Oliver the judge for bitches. Demelewis Catch The Breeze For Corydon was placed first in the Open Bitch Class and then won the Bitch CC. Mr Crawford-Taylor was the Best in Show judge and he awarded this to Evie. So a long weekend that turned out to be very successful. Evie has now won Best in Show awards at both the Welsh and Scottish Collie Clubs main shows. She is standing very prettily with her trophies from these two shows. The cup is very nice as it was presented to the Scottish Collie Club in 1891. This club is by far the oldest Collie Club in the UK, and this was the first time we have won this award. I think that we have now won Best in Show at all of the main land UK Collie Clubs Championship Shows.

These are the latest photos. They show 12 year old Corydon Fancy Me with her Great, Great, Great Grandsons. They are nearly 4 months old, By Corydon The Ring Leader out of Corydon Grandeflora

My book is going fast with over a hundred gone already.

Sunday 1st May was the Lancashire & Cheshire Collie Club Championship Show. Demelewis Dare to Bear for Corydon won three first prizes and won the Best Puppy in Breed award. This was his first Ch Show. Corydon The Ringleader was third in the Open Dog Class. This class winner and the Dog CC was won by a dog from Denmark who is a grandson of Int Ch Corydon La Suprema. Second place went to Mejola My Blue Harlequin a son of Ch Corydon Once in a Blue Moon out of Corydon Coracat for Mejola. Fourth place went to Karafaye Black Quillan a son of Demelewis Winter Moon over Corydon out of Corydon La Fayvorita avec Karafay. So the first four in this class were from our breeding.

Int Ch Corydon Catch Me Driftin has just had the show results for Finland for 2015. He was No.1 Rough Collie, No.1 Veteran Rough Collie and No.3 Stud Dog. Not bad for a dog who did not go there until he was 5 years old.

The book is now at home. It is ready to be sent out!!!!. Please go to the Book page for more details.

16th April was Working and Pastoral Breeds of Wales. Taz (Corydon The Ringleader) won the Open Dog Class. Evie (Demelewis Catch The Breeze For Corydon ) was placed 3rd in the Open Bitch Class. Maxine’s Corydon Victorian at Demelewis won the Post Graduate Bitch Class with Miranda handling.

Percy (Int Ch Corydon Catch Me Driftin) did it again. Best Veteran 2 at the big International Show in Finland at the weekend. He has now qualified for the Champion of Champions Show next year in Finalnd.

I have just received the proof copy of my book. I am very pleased with it as it looks really good and professional. The book is A4 size and has 300 pages. So it is quite big and hopefully informative. It should be ready for distribution at the end of next week.The price we have set is £30 per copy. We shall have it at the shows we attend. Postage and Packing to UK addresses would be £5.00 second class. Or £8.00 First Class. Internationally the price to add for P&P will be £11.00 Standard Rate to Europe. £16.00 to World Zone 1 or £18.00 to World Zone 2 (Australia and New Zealand) You can order and pay by PayPal on The Book page. Much less expensive if you can collect or have a friend who can collect from me.

Champion number eighty was crowned today in Australia. This is Corydon Winds of Victory. He is by Corydon Victor Ludorum out of Demelewis Catch The Breeze For Corydon.He was born on the 11th February 2014. He was used once before he left us. The minor puppy bitch winner at the LkA show was one of his. He is the eleventh Champion we have sent to Australia. We must be one of that countries top breeders.

We have a new photo of Taz (Corydon The Ringleader). Check it out on his page. I think that he is Very Special.

Some good news though, as Milo (Corydon Moonshine) is now a fully fledged German Champion, having won the required CC on Sunday the 13th March. He had to wait until he was old enough to win this qualifying award.

Crufts this year was a complete washout. Our South African friend who was staying with us, and went to the show with us, was horrified at the very poor standard of exhibits, and of the very poor judging. She is an International judge of all breeds. She had not been to Crufts for some years. She was not impressed with the drastic fall in the quality of the exhibits since then. And watching the Group on the Television I have to say that our breed is not the only one to be suffering this way. The Kennel Club had better start taking note of what is happening otherwise there will be no dog shows in a few years time. Maybe they do not want any more dog shows. Money seems to be more important than dogs. This was said several times to me at the show by different people. Miranda actually won a class as she handled Levi for Maxine, who was handling another, in the Good Citizens Class at the end of the show. Maxine’s dogs have evidently won this class five times now, which is quite a record. Levi is the litter brother of Demelewis Catch the Breeze For Corydon who won well for us last year.

A really good start to the New Year as our Tasmania export Corydon Winds of Victory attended his first two shows in his new country where he won Best of Breed at both and was Group 2 at one of them. This even though he was out of coat. His daughter won Best Baby Puppy in Show as well. He sired just one litter before he went down under. Lorraine Quince used him on her Corydon La Fayvorita Avec Karafaye just 14 days before he left us. She showed his daughter at the recent LKA Show where she won the Minor Puppy Bitch Class. I did not want to part with him, but we needed another tri dog like a hole in the head. But I thought he was rather nice.


Complete Show Record for 2016