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Friday, 26 August 2016

National park homes plans get the nod

Three planning applications for new homes for local people in the Yorkshire Dales National Park have been given the green light.

Two of the projects will see the conversion of existing barns and the third will involve a new build.

A barn at Simon’s Seat Farm in Skyreholme will be sensitively converted into a three-bedroom, local occupancy home. The application also includes the removal of redundant agricultural buildings and the construction of a garage. A barn at the Grange in Burtersett will be converted so it can be used either as a short-stay holiday let or as a local occupancy home. Outline planning permission was also given to build a three-bedroom local occupancy bungalow at Millholme Rise in Embsay.

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Georgian festival talk opener will delight antique lovers

Antiques from the Georgian  period
will be looked at as part
of  Richmond's GeorgeFest,
Antique and history lovers will make a beeline for Richmond.

On Monday (15 August) at 7.30pm, valuer and auctioneer David Elstob of Thomas Watson’s auction house treads the boards at The Georgian Theatre Royal with a talk about Georgian inventions and antiques.

This is the first event in the town’s Georgian festival which runs until 2 September and the talk will be followed by an open ‘roadshow-style’ session where members of the audience are invited to present their own antiques for valuation and discussion.

The talk explores the legacy of Georgian inventions. It was a time of great innovation and technological advancement and many of the objects that we take for granted today such as Wellington boots, accurate clocks, flushing toilets and security locks.

On Friday 19 August, David hosts a valuation day at The Station from 10am until 3pm where the public can drop in to discover what their treasures might be worth.

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Richmond visitor attractions get cash vote of confidence

Uniform success: Green Howards museum
director Lynda Powell in the costume store
with a rare 18th century militia uniform.
Two Richmond visitor attractions are in line for more than £100,000 Arts Council funding.

The Green Howards Museum and The Georgian Theatre Royal will benefit from the second round of the the council's Museum Resilience Fund, which has seen £12m donated to 94 museums and organisations across the country.

The theatre has received £38,630 to fund a post to support its Georgian Theatre Experience while the museum will use its £65,304 to develop the way it manages its extensive collection of uniforms. Some collection pieces are rare and include a complete soldier’s uniform worn during the Crimean War.

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

One trust went to sow, went to sow a meadow and ten years on ...

Conservation and environmental charity Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust is celebrating ten years since it launched an ambitious scheme to save the declining species-rich hay meadows in the area. And 600 hectares later, the trust team is still making meadows.
A big thumbs up ... Tanya St Pierre and Chris Myers celebrate
ten years of restoring vital meadows, near Askrigg..
 Over the past fifty years, 97 per cent of meadows in the UK have been lost through agricultural intensification, making them one of our most threatened habitats. Only a thousand hectares (less than four square miles) survived, putting hundreds of species of wildflowers and plants, bees, birds and other native wildlife species at risk.

The Hay Time project was set up ten years ago to change that with the trust working alongside farmers and partners Natural England, the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority and Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty to restore more than two square miles of degraded meadows. Trust officials say the work has brought precious habitat back from the brink.

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Rare opening event will tower over town's Georgian celebrations

Culloden Tower, one of Richmond’s most recognised buildings, opens for a rare public viewing as part of a summer festival celebrating the town’s rich Georgian heritage.

The luxurious interior of Culloden Tower, which is hosting
 open days as part of GeorgeFest16

GeorgeFest16 from 15 August to 2 September features a range of events and activities including themed-guided walks, talks, open-air cinema and an opportunity to sample Georgian food.

The tower is one of many local buildings dating from the Georgian period and the folly constructed as a monument to celebrate the victory of the Duke of Cumberland’s army over Bonnie Prince Charlie in 1746 dominates the townscape.

The building is now owned by the Landmark Trust and let as a holiday residence. It's rarely open to the public but the trust will hold two open days on Saturday and Sunday 20 and 21 August.

Monday, 25 July 2016

Week-long event celebrates our treasured 'breathing spaces'

Adventure is the theme of this year’s UK-wide National Parks Week, which starts today (25 July) – and there'll be plenty of that given that we have two of Britain's 'breathing spaces' in North Yorkshire.

On the menu ... food tasting at the North York Moors national park.
Photo by Brian Nicholson.
The teams at the North York Moors and Yorkshire Dales national parks are getting in on the act and have been busy drawing up a long list of activities including drystone wall demonstrations, geocaching, getting close up to nature, heritage trails, kite making and flying, treasure hunts and musical events to name but a few.
National Parks UK director Kathryn Cook said: "Our 15 wonderfully diverse national parks offer a great range of events and activities – there really is something for everyone to enjoy. So whether you’re a thrill seeker or you are looking for something a little less energetic, we encourage you to get out and be a part of the incredible landscapes that make this country so unique."

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Purpose-built disability accommodation is first for national park

Yorkshire Dales national park visitors with mobility, visual or hearing impairments will soon have a purpose-built place to stay.

Planning permission has been granted for the change of use of a single-storey outbuilding at Eastburn Farmhouse in Newbiggin to self-catering holiday accommodation for people who need fully accessible facilities.

And the development will be the first of its kind the national park and one of only six in North Yorkshire as a whole.

Monday, 18 July 2016

Barn conversions get thumbs up

More barns are to be converted into homes for local people in the Yorkshire Dales National Park after planners gave the green light to four schemes.

The park's planning committee approved the applications subject to conditions.

A traditional agricultural barn will be turned into a three-bedroomed, local occupancy home at Home Farm in West Witton while permission was also given to convert the former Deepdale Methodist Chapel near Dent into a local occupancy home. A former roadside barn outside Austwick, which had been converted into a bunkhouse, will undergo minor internal changes to become a family home while a fourth application involved the conversion of Crane Field Laithe in Otterburn to three-bedroomed accommodation.
Robert Heseltine, the authority’s member champion for development management, said: “Part of our vision for the national park is that it should be home to strong, self-reliant and balanced communities, with good access to the services they need.

“The national park authority is committed to increasing the stock of much-needed local occupancy homes. The conversion of roadside barns is a vital element of our new Yorkshire Dales Local Plan, which sets out our planning strategy for the next 15 years.

“Without a local occupancy stipulation these barn conversions could well end up being sold on the open market for second homes at the expense of keeping local communities together.”

Friday, 15 July 2016

Plan goes under microscope

Public hearings next week will examine new guidelines that will affect planning decisions in the Yorkshire Dales National Park for the next 15 years.

A planning inspector will scrutinise the park's local plan – a strategy for sustainable development – over three days starting on Tuesday (19 July).

The hearings will be held at the national park's offices in Bainbridge and will be chaired by independent planning inspector Simon Berkeley.

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Exhibition explores link between Dales landscape and its people

The people and places of the Dales are spotlighted in an exhibition in Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority's Yoredale offices in Bainbridge from next Monday (18 July).

Capturing a way of life ... the work of Guy Carpenter.

Photographer Guy Carpenter is showing images that highlight the link between the landscape and the people who live and work in it.

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

National park's new chair will continue to take beautiful area forward

The Yorkshire Dales national park authority's new chairman has vowed to follow in the footsteps of his predecessor in ensuring the area thrives for its communities and many visitors.

Craven district councillor Carl Lis has been elected to head the authority for the third time, taking over from former barrister and circuit judge Peter Charlesworth, who is leaving as a member after completing his term of office.

Exhibition follows in Turner's footsteps

The Dales Countryside Museum in Hawes is marking the bicentenary of JMW Turner's tour of Yorkshire with an exhibition of work by two artists who have been following in his footsteps.

Turner Summer towards  Ingleborough by Debbie Loane.

Jo Hume and Debbie Loane have engaged with the Yorkshire Dales in ways that echo the great artist's activity by connecting directly with the landscape, taking inspiration from the dramatic views and following in his footsteps.

The Turner Trail was created many years ago and has recently been promoted again through Welcome to Yorkshire. The exhibition links with the trail and provides an accessible way of connecting with the landscape and the views that inspired Turner.

Monday, 4 July 2016

Top shots give the Dales big picture

An image of a lone sheep in the snow by Les Fitton beat off 500 other entries in this year's photography contest run by conservation and environment charity Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust and Yorkshire Cottages.
Winter Sheep by Les Fitton.

This is the fourth year of the Facebook competition which brings together a variety of images that showcase the region’s unique character and landscape.

Les. from Bolton, took the winning shot entitled Winter Sheep 'on a claggy day' in Ingleborough.

Settle-based photographer Steve Finch judged the contest. He said: "This shot stood out for me because it perfectly captures living and working in the Dales in winter’s a good, honest photo.”

Remco Rog from the Netherlands scooped second place with his unusual image of an erratic taken at Twistleton Scar. Remco said: “I am absolutely delighted. It is especially an honour because I am Dutch, but I’ve been coming to the Dales each year for more than 12 years now. Always new things to discover, new hills to climb. It is my second home.”

Remco Rog's picture of an erratic at Twistleton Scar took second place.
Other scenes that caught the eye of the judges include the Scots Guardsman steaming across Dent Head viaduct which was captured on camera by Andrew Thrippleton from Pudsey, a paraglider soaring over Ingleborough by Nigel Hunter from Littleborough in Lancashire, and a photo of Winskill by Kristel Laurijssens from Belgium.

These and other favourite images will be brought together in the trust's 2017 charity calendar which will celebrate the Yorkshire Dales throughout the seasons.

Yorkshire Cottages has donated more than £16,000 to the conservation organisation over the past few years.

Yorkshire Cottages director Drew Dunn said: “Once again we have been blown away by the quality and variety of the entries, and I’d like to say a huge thank you and congratulations to all the photographers that took part. I’m very much looking forward to seeing Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust’s finished calendar.”

The finished Yorkshire Dales calendar will be on sale from August at All money raised will help to support the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust's work caring for the landscape, environment, communities and economy of the Yorkshire Dales.

Saturday, 25 June 2016

Hopes high that conservation project will be a barn storming success

Dilapidated barns in Upper Swaledale are being given a new lease of life during an 18-month project.

Around 600 of them and a number within Muker Parish have already been identified as potential candidates for some TLC.

The Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority’s project will see local builders using traditional materials, techniques and craft skills to conserve the barns for future generations

Friday, 17 June 2016

Tree sparrow conservation project in for a tweet, thanks to lottery grant

A project to support the recovery of tree sparrows across the Dales has secured a £9,500 heritage lottery grant.

The Yorkshire Dales national park initiative will record the presence of the bird across the area, identifying locations and helping safeguard and increase its population.

Recording will include monitoring existing nest boxes and providing a further 90 across the national park.

Training will involve showing people the right types of bird feeders and nest boxes, and how to identify good habitats for tree sparrows.

The national park authority will produce a booklet and organise a touring exhibition to help raise awareness and support among local communities.

Wildlife conservation officer Mark Hewitt said: “Discovering more about the delightful tree sparrow in the Yorkshire Dales will help us to provide better, more diverse habitats for a range of important, special birds. Local communities can play a real and genuine part in the conservation of a national priority species.”

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Bike libraries scheme causing chain reaction with new lending sites

Catterick Garrison and Scarborough are the latest North Yorkshire sites chosen to help expand a bike library service so that more youngsters have the opportunity to cycle.

Adam Yates and the Yorkshire bike libraries van.

The project, launched as a Tour de France legacy, boasts a total of 31 libraries across the county.

The project sees unwanted bikes donated at one of the county’s donation stations where they are fixed and available to hire for free. A total of 3,500 bikes have been donated to the Yorkshire Bank-backed scheme.

Helen Page, of Yorkshire Bank, said: "We are delighted to support the set-up of additional Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries across the county. Giving more children an opportunity to have access to a bike is something we feel passionately about.”

Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Sir Gary Verity said: “I am thrilled to see how successful the bike libraries have become since the very first one opened in Leeds last year, and I hope they will continue to inspire and excite young people across the county.”

Further information

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Richmond's museum recognised

Richmondshire Museum goes into the height of the visitor season with a top TripAdvisor award under its belt.

The Certificate of Excellence recognises accommodation providers, eateries and visitor attractions that have earned great reviews.

Mike Wood, former chairman of the Richmond-based attraction and honorary director, said: "It’s really rewarding to welcome visitors and, in turn, to be recognised for all the hard work volunteered over many years to make the museum what it is today.

Heather Leisman, TripAdvisor's vice president of industry marketing, said: "With the Certificate of Excellence, TripAdvisor honours hospitality businesses that have consistently received strong praise and ratings from travellers."

Saturday, 11 June 2016

North Yorks pubs get their point across as competition finalists

North Yorkshire drinking holes dominate the running for this year's Yorkshire Favourite Pub contest.

A shortlist of 12 has been drawn up and go head to head to be crowned winner at the Great Yorkshire Show on Tuesday July 12.

North Yorkshire's standard bearers are the Blue Lion, East Witton; Bull Inn, West Tanfield; Duke of York Inn, Gate Helmsley; Durham Ox, Crayke; Fairfax Arms, Gilling East; Queen O'T'Owd Thatch, South Milford and Woolly Sheep Inn, Skipton

Monday, 6 June 2016

Restoration job puts loco back on track on heritage railway

A Class 47 diesel loco is back to its former glory, thanks to volunteers of the Wensleydale Railway.

She's ready for work ... Haymarket is renamed. Pictured left to right: general manager Nigel Park, Keith Madeley, past and current county council leaders councillors David Jeffels, and Carl Les, and railway volunteer Paul Warren..
The locomotive, renamed Haymarket has been painted in Network South East livery. Its name comes from its time working in Scotland before its transfer to the South East.

Saturday, 28 May 2016

Ale's well with festival passengers aboard Wensleydale railway

Wensleydale Railway is running a special timetable to boost visitors to the annual Wensley Ale festival at Redmire this bank holiday weekend including services from Northallerton West.

The event will feature more than 30 real ales, local food suppliers.

On Monday, Finghall Village holds its sponsored barrel push and Sunday and Monday are open days at Aysgarth Station.

Railway general manager Nigel Park said: “The annual Wensley Ale Festival weekend is a great celebration that deserves a good turnout of both trains and enthusiasts. We are especially pleased to have Steam on Sunday as it is a ‘must see’ weekend at Wensleydale Railway.”

Wensleydale Railway is one of the longest heritage railway routes in the country and operates a daily service in the main season between Leeming Bar and Redmire with Wednesday and Saturdays for the Northallerton-Leeming Bar section. Railway bosses say that plans are in hand to extend the service in line with future demand.

Further information: