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Wednesday 1 August 2012

Happy Yorkshire Day!

August 1st is Yorkshire Day and so what better day to sing the praises of this beautiful county! Contrary to an opinion I recently heard, the people of the north of England do not all go down t’pit, wear flat caps and keep whippets or ferrets, but we do have a fascinating history, a plethora of wonderful historic sites, beautiful landscapes and interesting coastlines and can boast many wonderful artists, musicians and writers! Of course, York itself is an amazing place for anyone interested in history since, apart from the original Roman walls, the Medieval Shambles and the presentation of the Mystery Plays, it is reputed to be the most haunted city in Europe.

If you enjoy stately homes, we have dozens...perhaps one of the most impressive being Castle Howard, where Brideshead Revisted was filmed; and the county is littered with the abbeys which Henry VIII destroyed, one of the most beautiful and evocative being the fabulous Fountains Abbey or the somewhat spooky Whitby Abbey of which the remarkable St. Hilda was once abbess. It was also, of course, in Whitby that Bram Stoker wrote ‘Dracula’. Whitby, once famous for jet, is a unique seaside resort, quite different from Scarborough and Filey...the entire Yorkshire East Coast is filled with many wonders!

Alan Bennett, J.B. Priestley, Arthur Ransome, Ted Hughes and the Brontes are but a few of many Yorkshire writers; Ben Kingsley, Dame Judi Dench, Sean Bean, Michael Palin are among many famous Yorkshire actors; both Delius and Barry were Yorkshiremen, as was the brilliant artist, John Atkinson Grimshaw, and the contemporary artist David Hockney...(I could have mentioned Henry Moore, too, but I don’t feel so proud of that kind of art!).

So, if you are an overseas visitor, here perhaps for the Olympics, please remember that England extends quite some way north of London and Yorkshire, a county filled with very friendly people, is well worth a visit!

Happy Yorkshire Day!

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