Robert had a life-long career in dairy farming, and was a great role model and ambassador for the Holstein breed.
He joined the family farm on leaving school at 14-years-old. Robert met his wife Joan through Lylehill Young Farmers’ Club and they married in 1968.
In 1982 Robert established the Alderview Herd, and over the years was widely recognised as one of the province’s leading Holstein Friesian breeders. One of his most successful cows was Alderview Rose 5 EX91 (2), awarded nine star brood cow status, followed by ten star superior brood cow status, and then eleven stars.
Robert won numerous accolades, and the epitome of his show career was winning the supreme championship at the RUAS Balmoral Show in 1992 with Alderview Midnight Rose 7 EX. In 1999 he was one of the first, if not the first, breeder in Northern Ireland to achieve a Holstein UK Master Breeder Award.
The Rosebud family won best cow family group in the NI Holstein Friesian Club’s herds inspection competition in 1997, 1998 and 2000.
Robert retired from farming in 2002. Prior to its dispersal the Alderview Herd was producing a rolling herd average of 9,204kgs at 3.72% butterfat and 3.19% protein. The herd was milked twice daily, and the high yields were achieved by commercial management and no diet feeding. Eighty percent of the herd was classified VG or EX.
Robert was president of the NI Holstein Friesian Breeders’ Club in 1998/99, and oversaw the successful merger of the club with the NI Holstein Breeders’ Club. He was the recipient of the Club Award in recognition of his work and commitment during that time.
Since retirement Robert continued to take an active interest in the Holstein breed. A highly respected stockman and judge, he officiated at numerous Provincial shows, club shows and sales, and enjoyed judging the junior and senior section of Holstein NI’s herds inspection competition.
He was a familiar face at Holstein NI events throughout the country, and was a valued steward at the former Irish National Holstein Show, the HYB’s annual calf show, Balmoral Show and the RUAS Winter Fair.
Robert was a former chairman of the NI Shows Association. He was a director and chairman of Antrim Agricultural Society, and worked tirelessly to promote the show and attract sponsorship.
Robert was also actively involved in Loanends Presbyterian Church. One of his fund raising events was the annual charity tractor and classic car road run, which over the years raised thousands of pounds for the church and local charities.
A pillar of the farming community, Robert Wallace gave so much of his time in a voluntary capacity, and was awarded the Danske Bank and Farming Life Unsung Hero Award in 2015.
Throughout his retirement Robert remained involved in farming and took a keen interest in the management of the Dunadry Herd, owned by daughter Helen and her husband Robert Shanks; and the Abercorn Herd owned by his brother David, and nephew Alan.
He also helped out on a regular basis at Laurelview Equestrian Centre, owned by daughter Linda and son-in-law Robert Davis.
Condolences to Joan, daughters Linda, Helen, Karen, and the wider family circle.