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Tom and Sue Aston (TASA) always had dogs around them. When they first married they had two pet Labradors but later, when they moved to Northamptonshire, Tommy started going shooting with a friend who was a gamekeeper and so he bought a working cocker from the well-known Harpersbrook lines. Subsequently Sue and Tommy bred from this bitch and ended up with several working cockers. At that stage they decided that they ought to have their own affix and so TASA was born (Tom And Sue Aston).
Tom and Sue carried on breeding working cockers for several years and a good few found their way to top Shoots in Northamptonshire and the surrounding areas. They then became interested in showing. Although they had a wonderful time showing their early first TASA English Springer dog, gaining a lot of experience, he was certainly not up to standard.
After researching the breed and meeting people around the show ring they bought their first bitch, Seroll Genesis of Tasa (Gemma) from Sean Annetts and his family. She was a beautiful black and white bitch whose father was the famous Sh.Ch. Monclare Mr Chips. They were a lot more successful showing her and were absolutely over the moon when they qualified her for Crufts.
One of Gemma's offspring, Tasa Tom Tit, did relativity well in the show ring and sired some nice puppies. The move to liver and white was made with aquisition of another puppy, Eldek Cherry Blossom of Tasa. Cherry's sire was also Sh.ch. Monclare Mr Chips and her dam Robil Amber Gara. Her show carreer was very successful and mating her to Sh.Ch Hawkhill Starskythis was the start of the current TASA line. Sh.Ch. Tasa Toyboy was produced from this mating. A mating with Sh.Ch. Hawkhill Take a Chance produced Sh.Ch. Tasa Toymaker. She really did very well and had the sweetest head and expression.
Tasa Tangerine Dream was the result of mating Toymarine and Toymaker and although she did not attain show champion status she produced some lovely puppies and then mated to Sh.Ch Shipden Chuck Berry produced champion Sh.Ch. Tasa Baron Knight. A number of Baron's progeny are being shown successfully, amongst them Tasa Tuscany, Chetruda King of the Road, and his sister Chetruda Northern Rose.
Following along Tangerine Dreams line, a mating to Sh.Ch Lyndora April Fool produced a very nice bitch called Tasa Rough Diamond, who although rarely shown, has been a useful addition to the TASA breeding programme. She was mated to Sh.Ch Tasa Toymarine and produced a very nice litter, one of which was exported to Jan Waite of the Cardhu Kennels in New Zealand namely Tasa Tourmaline. His brother Tasa Tigers Eye is another very nice dog
In order to add new blood to the lines an outcross was needed so Tangerine Dream was mated to Sh.Ch Lyndora Jack the lad ()puppy to Sh.Ch Laca Border Union). This line, put directly back to Toymarine, produced a lovely litter in Tasa Cosmos Boy (who was top puppy of the year in 1994) and his sister Tasa Summer Glory.
Cosmos Boy was mated to a granddaughter of Toymarine and Toymaker to produce a lovely bitch who was top puppy of the year in 1995, Tasa Sweet Chestnut, who we exported to Jan in New Zealand (in wheip to Sh.Ch. Tasa Baron Knight). Her daughter Cardhu Midnight Dreams is now a New Zealand Champion.
As you can see Tom and Sue have worked to keep to a particular type and temperament and this has been achieved by carefully considering the sire and dam of each litter. Not every litter produces a stunner, but each is a vital facet in the long-term future of the TASA breeding programme.
Tommy had suffered heart problems for several years and in 1994 these progressed to heart failure. Tommy was lucky and a suitable heart became available for transplant. Once he had recovered from this major surgery Tommy returned to the show scene and was proud to receive judging appointments in the UK and abroad.
Sue purchased Tommy a beautiful Welsh Springer Spaniel Dog, Russethill Royal Academy of Tasa from Doreen Gately as a get well present. 'Glen' certainly did extremely well and Tommy, who had previously been unable to show dogs himself, guided him to Top puppy of the year 1995. In the same year English Springer Tasa Sweet Chestnut also achieved this award and he has been a consistent winner obtaining his stud book number, but moreover being a lovely companion.
Two further Welsh Springers were obtained from the well-known Cwrt Afon Kennels of Len and Kath Morgan. Cwrt Afton Carled had her first R.CC at 14 months old. Cwrt Afon Talfan won best puppy dog at his first show out and qualifyied for Crufts 2000.
Unfortunately Tommy developed cancer in 2004 and after a short illness died. He is sorely missed by Sue and her children, Charlotte and Robert. However, life goes on and Sue's life still revolves around their dogs.
Having begun breeding with Cocker Spaniels, Sue's first love is for this breed so she has always had the Cocker Spaniels. Now she has the 'show' type originating from the famous Bitcon Line rather than working gun dogs. Having blue roan bitches and a beautiful orange roan dog, Clevehill Seville, some beautiful puppies have been produced from these matings. Sue occasionally shows some of these BLUESILVER Cocker Spaniels affix dogs at open shows.
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