Cromwell’s troops when quartered in Reading, made reference to a locally bred pig renowned for its size and the quality of its bacon and ham. This turned out to be one of the earliest records of the Berkshire breed. These pigs were larger and coarser than today’s Berkshire. Their colour varied from black to sandy red; they were also sometimes spotted and had variable white patches. However, the breed was influenced by the introduction of Chinese and Siamese blood, which resulted in the development of the Berkshire we are familiar with today. This is a smaller animal, black in colour, with prick ears, white socks, white tip to tail and flash on face.