Articles and Features

We didn't make it! - Our monthly column by Andy Boxall, Minister of Elim Ryedale Church

July 2016

If in doubt, talk about the weather! It’s a British pastime, rain or shine we all have an opinion. As I write, summer has struck without warning, no gradual increase in the temperature just; wham! (no not the 80’s duo), glorious hot sunshine. Of course, everyone’s talking about it, we can’t help it, some love it and others hate it. Yet in London on the same day, lightening struck and flash floods caused motorists to abandon their cars.
We went camping in Cornwall a few years ago in search of the sun but it rained and rained. Determined to make the most of each day we went out anyway. We crossed an estuary on a local ferry only to find ourselves cut off in a local village. A flash flood had blocked the only road out and the cars queued as they came off the ferry. Gingerly, but successfully the cars in front drove through the flood and then it came to our turn. Guess what, we didn’t make it. I was so embarrassed, although my girls were pleased when members of the local rugby team came to our rescue.
I’m reminded of a famous verse, ‘He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous’
So what does the verse mean? Jesus slipped this verse in as an illustration during a talk he gave on the side of a mountain. His topic was loving our neighbours.
We should love as our Father in heaven loves us, he taught, unconditionally, uninfluenced by behaviour or merit, just consistent, dependable and full of grace. Perhaps that’s still a lesson for us all?

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Malton men shine in sell-out Lesley Garrett concert

July 2016

Malton District Male Voice Choir is back home facing new singing challenges after lending its voice to a unique concert spectacular with popular soprano Lesley Garrett.

About a dozen members of the Malton choir were among 210 singers from seven male voice choirs who sang at the 25th Anniversary Men of Steel concert in Scunthorpe’s prestigious Baths Hall with guest soloist Lesley Garrett.

The popular opera and show soprano described the massed choir as “magnificent”. She brought men from Malton to the front of the stage for a hand-in-hand bow during a standing ovation before a capacity audience of more than 1000.

Lesley Garrett said the massed choir was one of the best she had ever sung with and added she had enjoyed the experience. She also told choir officials she had wanted to be part of the event to support the local steel industry and help ensure that people keep making music in industrial northern areas.

In a personal message to the Malton choir before the concert, Lesley Garrett said “I know that the Malton choir are relatively young, just ten years old, but I am sure we will be able to make fabulous music together”.

Malton choir Musical Director Vivien Wilcock said “Scunthorpe added greatly to our experience”.

Although we are no strangers to singing with other choirs, “this was the first time we have sung with so many at the same time – and in such illustrious company”, she added.

The Malton choir is now practising again for a trio of new concerts. It will sing at Sledmere House in September to support Yorkshire Air Ambulance and has also been invited back for a second concert in Cropton in October. In November it sings again at the prestigious East Coast Music Festival in Bridlington.

Officials said now is a good time for new members to join. No previous singing experience is necessary. The choir meets most Mondays 7.30-9.30 pm in the Baptist Church Hall in Malton (next to Yates’ store). Call 01944 758693 or 01653 692362.

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The school holidays are coming! - Relate

July 2016

The holidays for children and young people gives the promise of 6 weeks of fun! For parents or carers it can be much more of a headache – juggling child care, planning and paying for a summer holiday and what to do if it rains and you are all stuck inside together.

The number of telephone calls we get after the children go back to school hits a peak in January and September. Lots of people struggle to spend time together when they are used to their day to day routine. Planning for the holidays can make them smoother;

Plan early. Don’t leave arrangements for child care until the last minute and try to have a contingency if the plans fall through.

If you are going on holiday, plan in advance what you are taking. Give everyone simple tasks to do to get prepared in advance. It’s far less stressful than doing it all the night before!

Get the kids involved in household chores. Everyone wants to enjoy the holidays so it’s not fair if all the workload falls onto one person.

When planning days out, make a list of what everyone wants to do and schedule it so that everyone is happy. Having a wish list for both rainy and sunny days is a great way to do things.

For long car journeys, find some fun games to play together while you are driving and take plenty of comfort breaks.

If you are holidaying with others, make sure you are all aware of what each family wants from the holiday to avoid any tension while you are there.

But most of all – plan for fun and laughter!

For Easingwold, Harrogate, Selby or York, call
01904 625971
or email

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What is the Summer Reading Challenge?

July 2016

The Summer Reading Challenge takes place every year during the school summer holidays, where thousands of families take part in the biggest reading event for children in libraries across the UK.

The aim of the challenge, which is run by the charity The Reading Agency, is to get children to sign up at their local library, then read six books of their choice over the summer to complete the Challenge. There are exclusive fun prizes and collectors cards to collect along the way, and it’s FREE to take part!

Every year there is a different theme and this year it’s ‘The Big Friendly Read’ which honours the Worlds Number 1 storyteller, Roald Dahl. After reading each book, the children can go to their Library, talk about what they have read and get a prize. When they have read their six books they will receive a certificate to say they have completed the challenge.

Children are invited to read anything that they like and can even read books from home, including ebooks or audiobooks as long as they tell the Library about the stories they’ve discovered.

The challenge starts on the 16th of July and is open to children aged 5-12 years. There is also a smaller challenge with stickers for under fives so that they can take part too. And it’s all free!

This year there are lots of Roald Dahl related events going on through the summer as well, with magic and themed activities happening at libraries across the city.

To find out more visit or visit your local library for more details.

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Summer Safety by Jimmy Hannon, PCSO 5637

July 2016

At long last we are starting to see warmer weather and a huge number of us will join friends for a drink to enjoy the sun, and very often we can drink rather more than we originally intended to.

York is famous for its Riverside locations, which are a very popular place to meet. There have been a number of very well publicised tragedies in York over recent years where people have lost their lives in one of our Rivers. All too often alcohol is a contributing factor to these events. If you are going to enjoy a drink by the River, or plan to walk home alongside the River afterwards, it is vital that you remain sensible and consider your own safety, and that of your friends and family. The river bank is for the most part not fenced off and the paths do run very close to the edge of the water in many places. Lighting along the river is not always good and it is very possible for you to slip and fall in. If you can plan your route home either avoiding the River or walk with friends so that you can look after each others safety.

You should also be aware that there are individuals who will take advantage of you if you are under the influence of alcohol. You are far more vulnerable after a few drinks and whilst it is thankfully an uncommon occurrence, there have been cases where individuals have been attacked after a night out and had their valuables stolen. Minimise your risks by walking home with a friend and sticking to well lit routes in public areas. If you do find that you have to go home alone there are a number of bus services in York that are inexpensive and safer than walking alone. There are also taxi’s available which will get you home safely. Remember to always use official taxi’s from designated taxi ranks or order one from one of the many taxi firms that operate within the City.

The summer is a time where we can all enjoy time with family and friends but we just ask people to remain vigilant to mimimise the risks of becoming a victim of crime or being involved in an accident. If you do have any concerns, contact your local Safer Neighbourhood Police Team via the North Yorkshire Police website or by the 101 number.

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Big Art

July 2016

Bringing art to the heart of the city on the last Sunday of each month.
Local artists Hatti McKenzie and Sue Clayton are on a mission to bring life back to the refurbished Little Shambles Market with Little Shambles Big Art on the last Sunday of each month.

Launched on Easter Sunday, ‘Little Shambles Big Art’ is a family-friendly event bringing local professional artists in to York alongside live free art demonstrations and children’s art activities.

Sue says “Each event will have live demonstrations with guest artists encouraging all to have a go. Activities are open to all, aged 0 to 90! Come and join in with the art-themed activities every month.”

In May, children made Stallwarts (like gargoyles) which will be displayed around the market stalls and Hatti invited visitors to walk across a large slab of clay as a record of the footfall in the market and which will be made into tiles, fired and create a striking installation in the market.

Local professional artists are on hand exhibiting and selling their work in all mediums including painting, textiles, ceramics, papercut and glass. There are budgets to suit all, from cards and prints to bespoke pieces.

Live music and food from neighbouring street food area make Little Shambles Big Art a great place to visit with your family on 31st July.

Find out what’s on at July’s market on Facebook (littleshamblesbigart), Instagram or Twitter.

To contact the team email or call Hatti on 07740 188514 or Sue on 07935 007765.

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Ragwort Poisoning by Battle Flatts Veterinary Clinic

July 2016

Ragwort poisoning is one of the most common causes of liver disease in horses and ponies in the UK. Ragwort is a tall plant with yellow flowers. Its scientific name is Senecio jacobea and it contains a poison (toxin) which is also found in some other plants, such as Lantana and some Heliotropes. The poison is found in variable concentrations in different parts of the plant and at different stages of its growth. The plants are not palatable and horses will not usually eat them unless pasture is heavily contaminated or there is little other food available. However, the poison is very stable and remains toxic even when the dried plant is incorporated into hay. The most common cause of ragwort poisoning is therefore from chronic (long-term) eating of hay which includes dried ragwort.

Signs of ragwort poisoning
Unless very large quantities of fresh plants are eaten, which is very uncommon in UK, the symptoms of poisoning are usually not seen until 4 weeks to 6 months after eating the plants. Small doses of the poison gradually accumulate in the horse’s liver where it causes damage to the liver cells and subsequent scarring, eventually causing the liver to shrink in size. Symptoms of liver disease only develop when the organ is no longer able to compensate for the loss of functional tissue. Symptoms usually develop quite suddenly, although in some horses and ponies slight illness can precede more severe symptoms. Early signs include loss of appetite, depression, diarrhoea, weight loss and mild jaundice. More severe symptoms include marked jaundice and collapse or abnormal behaviour, which can range from profound depression to compulsive walking and pressing the head against objects, e.g. walls, apparent blindness, photosensitization (excessive sensitivity to sunlight) and convulsions. These behavioural abnormalities are caused by toxic effects on the horse’s brain (hepatic encephalopathy). Most severely affected cases with behavioural abnormalities die within approximately 10 days.

Ragwort poisoning diagnosis
and treatment
The diagnosis of ragwort poisoning is based on clinical signs and laboratory tests. A history of ingestion of ragwort is often unclear due to the time lag between ingestion and the development of clinical signs. Laboratory tests, including the measurement of liver enzymes, bile acids and bilirubin levels in the horse’s blood, confirm a diagnosis of liver disease and assess the liver’s ability to function. To confirm the diagnosis of ragwort poisoning, a liver biopsy is required to demonstrate the typical microscopic abnormalities (pathology). If these are not found, the biopsy may help to suggest other possible causes of liver damage. Follow-up liver biopsies help to monitor progression of the condition in horses receiving treatment for ragwort poisoning.

Preventing ragwort poisoning
Any ragwort plants that are found should be pulled up by their roots and disposed of away from livestock. Do not leave cut or pulled plants in the paddock or they may be eaten when they have dried and are more palatable. Plants on adjacent land should be removed to avoid the spreading of seed back into your paddocks.

Always ensure that there is adequate grazing or alternative food sources such as hay, so that your horse or pony is not tempted to eat any ragwort which may have been missed.

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Should I be Self Employed or a Limited Company? by Phil Kitchen

July 2016

Anyone who is in business or is thinking of going into business should have considered what structure to use, whether it be Self Employed, Partnership or Limited Company.

Being Self Employed, (or a Sole Trader) is the simplest way of running a business. You simply register with HMRC and account for your income and expenses each year through Self-Assessment.

Forming a Limited Company is more complex and the admin burden often puts people off, however the benefits often out way the disadvantages.

Advantages of “going limited”
Limit your Liability – being Self Employed means there is no separation between you and your business, meaning all business debts are personal debts, and your liability is unlimited. A limited company however, is a separate legal entity, which can give the owners protection. As shareholders in your company, your liability is limited to the amount paid for your shares, which can be as little as £1. This is assuming you haven’t given any personal guarantees.
Credibility – being “limited” is often seen as being more prestigious and gives your business credibility. This can help win more work and grow your business.
Pay less tax – one of the main reasons for trading as a limited company are the potential tax savings. Being Self Employed means you may be paying up to 40% or even 50% in income tax and up to 9% in National Insurance. Companies pay Corporation Tax at just 20% on profits up to £300k. As an employee of your company you can pay yourself a salary, and as a shareholder you can receive dividends. We can calculate the most tax efficient mix of salary and dividend to minimise your own personal tax liability.
Pension payments – set up in the right way, employer contributions could be made which will usually be tax deductible in the company, saving corporation tax.

Disadvantages of “going limited”
Start Up Costs – you need to register a company at Companies House and ensure its set up correctly, as it can be costly to correct mistakes later. However, PCLG offer a low cost Company Formation service, starting from as little as £100.
Increased Admin – accounts have to be filed both with Companies House and HMRC, and some basic financial information will be available to view on the public record. PCLG can ensure you meet all of your filing obligations.
Mortgage Applications – it may make applying for a mortgage more difficult if you receive a small salary and the rest of your income as dividends, especially in your first couple of years of trade.
If you are in business or thinking of starting up and want to talk about “going limited”, contact us now for a FREE Initial Consultation with a Director (no obligation) email, call 01904 558300 or visit for more information.
PCLG, Chartered Accountants is a friendly York based firm of Accountants offering a complete range of accountancy, tax, audit and business services throughout Yorkshire

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Dragon Boat Racing

July 2016

Dragon Boat Racing is one of the fastest growing athletic events in the world. The World Championships of Dragon Boat Racing have been held annually since 1976 in Hong Kong.

What is most exciting, however, is the growth of the sport at the grass roots level and how it has become very popular with charities in recent years. The York Rotary Annual Dragon Boat Challenge will take place on Sunday 10th July between 10am and 4pm. For the 14th year running, 36 teams will battle it out on the Ouse, between Scarborough Railway Bridge and Lendal Bridge, for the Challenge Trophy and other awards, including fastest Charity Team, fastest Armed Services Team, and of course the “Best Dressed Team” trophy.

Each crew is made up of 16 paddlers paced by a drummer at the bow and guided by a helmsman at the stern. The idea is that power and rhythm are combined to achieve maximum acceleration and speed over a 250 metre course. This is a visually exciting event and the crews learn very early on that the best results come from working as a team. The teams have an enormous amount of fun and you can expect to see a very colourful display of wacky and inventive fancy dress outfits!

The York Dragon Boat Challenge has raised over £850,000 since 2003 for a whole host of charities. The Rotary Club of York’s 2016 nominated local charities, supporting children, are Family Fund York and The Island York. In addition to the racing, there will be a number of stalls and a variety of activities alongside the River for all to enjoy.

The York Rotary Club who organises this event was set up in 1921 and they currently have around 90 members who are very active in the community raising funds and supporting local charities. Entries for the 2016 race have now closed, however, you can find out more by visiting

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Society's Superheros

May 2016

by Mary Mahon

Undeniably, superheroes have become an intrinsic part of our culture. Every few months we can enjoy a new blockbuster hit from Marvel or DC, whether it’s an innovative adaption of an old hero reborn in a fresh way, a continuation of a never-ending film series or something entirely new - there’s so much to choose from!

Because of this superhero craze, when people hear the word ‘hero’, it’s generally affiliated with men and women running around in spandex and a cape, sporting powers, gadgets and ninja skills. However, I’ve realised that as you get older, you begin to realise that there are real life superheroes all around us, and just like Superman’s façade as ‘Clark Kent’, they’re hidden in plain sight…

With each day lacking the security and the promise that they’ll see the next tomorrow, soldiers are the ultimate, self-sacrificing heroes, dedicating themselves to their country and their people.
Scientists and inventors: they serve the greater good through devoting themselves to research in order for us to better our world.

These heroes are helping our world in so many countless ways, all the way from biological breakthroughs that save millions of lives, to physics phenomena that open our eyes to the secrets of the universe, to inspiring inventions that change life as we know it.

Protestors are true reflections of people who stand up for what they believe is right even when the whole world seems to be against them, whether it’s fighting for the smaller things like the protection of a certain woodlands, or world-changing movements like the Civil Rights Movement under the iconic hero Martin Luther King Jr.

Similarly, there are so many charity workers in our society who willingly give up their time for the greater good with no personal or material gain, and those who fight physical and mental conditions are irrefutably heroic, spending their time constantly fighting internal battles with every ounce of their strength.

Although they may not have vivacious costumes or superhuman gifts, heroes are all around us, and it’s because of them that we have such an incredible world to live in.

Next time you see these cinematic superheroes plastered to the sides of buses, dominating the internet and sported all over clothing, maybe spare a thought to the real superheroes that live amongst us.

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A smart new venue in Wintringham

May 2016

On January 30th Wintringham officially opened its new Community Hall on the site of the old wooden building which had been there since 1953 and had been unusable for some time.

The project started in 2002 but was shelved a few years later due to various circumstances. In 2008 it emerged there was Lottery money available for such projects and so, with a new committee, on which three still serve from the original, determined efforts were made to start again. Whilst the process of obtaining Lottery Fund approval was lengthy and complicated the project was finally given a grant and work started in April 2015 with completion at the end of November.

The main hall is 20 metres by 10 metres and has a badminton court laid out. There is a fully fitted kitchen and a separate meeting room, dedicated to Chris Yates who initiated the original idea. The hall has a large capacity suitable for meetings, classes, parties, concerts, celebrations and indoor sports etc. There are two tennis tables available. There is good parking and disabled access.

Enquiries to book the hall or to have a look please contact Anna on 01944 759123
or email

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#Ryedalecycling - Mascots on tour!

May 2016

Two giant puppets have taken to the road as Mascots for Ryedale Cycle Forum.

The mascots would be happy to come along to any local event to get people talking about local cycle trails, and to raise funds for paths and signs.

You’ll see from the picture that they are BIG! They are very light, and can be carried on an adult’s shoulders, if there other helpers alongside to keep them steady. But they can also just sit on a large chair or bench, where children seem to really enjoy looking at them.

Years ago we could get on our bikes for a short journey to friends, or the shops, and think nothing of it. These days the main roads are so busy, that many people are too nervous to cycle. It’s such a shame, because Ryedale does have lots of lovely quiet lanes for cycling, but getting to them is often too dangerous, especially with children.

Ryedale Cycle Forum are looking to raise funds for cycle tracks to help residents and visitors get out and about by bicycle, and would welcome suggestions about where such routes are needed.

If you have an idea of an event that the Ryedale Cycle Forum mascots could attend, please contact Helen Gundry, Kirkbymoorside Environment Group, 01751 432447 or email

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Proud Dad

May 2016

Our monthly column by Andy Boxall, Minister of Elim Ryedale Church

There are two types of pride: pride that elevates us above others and pride that elevates others above ourselves. When we elevate ourselves, we build an ivory tower from which we can only look down on others. We all know proud people who are out of reach, arrogant, self reliant and unwilling to listen.

This pride always goes before a fall. Yet there is another pride that doesn’t elevate us, but celebrates and strengthens others. When you are bursting with pride and ready to shout it from the mountain top so all the world can hear how the achievements of others have made us glad.

This time next month, my eldest daughter will be married and I’m a very proud Dad. As the day has got closer I have experienced a variety of emotions. I’ve worried as a parent that I have missed out some essential life skills. I’ve been excited at the thought of a healthier bank balance. I have been alarmed at the thought of giving the hand of my daughter to a young man, however nice he is. But the biggest emotion I have experienced is pride. I am proud of the beautiful young lady she has become, I’m proud of her decision to commit to marriage, but most of all I’m proud she is and will always be my daughter.

On the day Jesus was baptised there was a loud voice from His Father in heaven, ‘This is my Son, whom I love; with Him I am well pleased.’ Some say this proves the Father speaks with a cockney accent! I digress! Jesus was about to start His earthly ministry but the Father could not hold back His pride and literally shouted it from heaven for the world to hear. I wonder how often Jesus found strength by remembering these words and the pride of His Father?

Are you proud? Not in the self elevating way, but proud of the achievements of others? Let’s celebrate, encourage and strengthen each other by shouting it from the mountain tops for all to hear.

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Spring into summer with music at the Milton Rooms

May 2016

From cello to synthesiser, banjo to violin, and classic to folk, the Milton Rooms early summer programme has it all.

After previous sell-out performances at the Milton Rooms, firm favourites Blackheart return to the Studio on June 3rd. Steve Hackett of Genesis has described their music as “beautiful, powerful and inspiring”. They recently won Best British Duo in the UK Exposure Music Awards. Rick Pilkington and Chrissie Mostyn, play a heavenly fusion of acoustic folk, intelligent pop and classical composition. They feature a stunning array of instruments including acoustic and electric guitars, piano, percussion, vintage synthesisers, mandola, and flugelhorn, plus Chrissie’s incredibly haunting vocals.

Award-winning Canadian songwriter, Ian Sherwood, offers music to lift the soul when his UK tour comes to Malton on June 4th. Ian takes catchy melodies and heart-breaking stories and mixes them with intricate guitar playing, saxophones and pop/rock grooves. His fusing of contemporary song styles (from pop to country to jazz) and contemplative lyrics, energetic stage show and honest presentation have quickly gained him a following. Ian has penned tunes for many other artists as well as for theatre, film and television and was named Contemporary Singer of the Year in the Canadian Folk Music Awards.

The Milton Rooms switches the mood to classical with a fusion of Italy’s Cremona Quartet and North Yorkshire’s own renowned cellist Jamie Walton performing chamber music by Mozart and Schubert on June 9th. The Cremona now grace the stage of the most prestigious international venues and were warmly received on their debut at the Milton Rooms last autumn. Their focus and intensity brings tremendous life to music.  

Tickets for all events are now on sale at the Milton Rooms box office in Malton or by telephone 01653 696240.

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Three Trophies for Harmonia Choir

May 2016

Harmonia Ladies Choir, based in Norton, are celebrating after winning three trophies at the National Choir in the Eskdale Festival in April.

The community choir was formed in 2008 by local singing teacher Alison Davies and has gone from strength to strength. It now boasts 57 members of all ages and from all over Ryedale.

A first place in the Songs from the Shows Class and Christmas in April were exciting enough for the choir but there was a huge cheer when they also won in the evening Recital Class.

Alison said “The choir have worked so hard to reach such a high standard of performance and thoroughly deserved these trophies.

Why not join Harmonia for a fantastic evening of songs from shows, gospel, jazz, folk and pop in Malton at St Leonards Church on 18th June.

The concert at 7.45pm, is in aid of Cafod and rural communities in El Salvador where St Leonard’s has been helping a village, Puentecitos, since 2010.

Marianne (Handy Mag editor) also sings with Harmonia and would like to say a big thank you to Alison Davis for all of her work with the choir. We couldn’t have done it without you!

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Summer is here and it’s show time for Ryedale Dog Rescue!

May 2016

We have a packed summer of fundraising ahead and we want all dog owners to start getting their faithful friends spruced up for our fun dog shows.

As a small team of volunteers we rely on the success of these shows to raise vital funds for the rescue, so if you think your dog has the ‘most beautiful eyes’, the ‘waggiest tail’ or is a contender for the ‘best biscuit catcher’ then why not bring them along to our shows and try and win a rosette or two.

There will be lots of fun games to take part in, stalls and a chance to have a go at agility so they promise to be a great family day out...We look forward to seeing you there!

Every single penny we raise is spent on rescuing, caring for and re-homing abandoned and unwanted dogs.

Coming events - Please come along and support us!

Saturday 11th June - Coffee Morning Wells Lane Baptist Hall, Malton

Sunday 19th June - Fundraising Stall at the Sun Inn, Pickering Charity Day

Sunday 3rd July - Fun Dog Show at Malton Agricultural Show

Saturday 9th July - Coffee Morning, Wells Lane Baptist Hall, Malton

Sunday 10th July - Big Fun Dog Show, Scampston Park

For further information on Ryedale Dog Rescue please visit our website or you can contact us on 07581 324153 (Please remember we are a charity run entirely by unpaid volunteers, most of whom work full-time, so please be patient and we will return your call as soon as possible. Thank you)

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Common Ground for Local Author

May 2016

In partnership with Ryedale Book Festival, the National Park is very excited to be welcoming award-winning local author, Rob Cowan, to The National Park Visitor Centre, Danby where he will be talking about his work at an event 2 – 4pm on 19 June.

Sally Smith, Events and Exhibition Coordinator at the National Park said: “With the spectacular backdrop of the countryside, the Visitor Centre provides the perfect place for Rob to share his work. We’re so pleased to be working with Ryedale Book Festival to bring this event to visitors and are really looking forward to working together on future projects.”
Blurring the boundaries of memoir, natural history and novel, Rob’s book, entitled Common Ground, offers nothing less than an enthralling new way of writing about nature and our experiences within it. We encounter the edge-land’s inhabitants in immersive, kaleidoscopic detail as their voices and visions rise from the fields and woods: beasts, insects, plants and people – the beggars, sages and lovers across the ages.

Book Festival Director, Sarah Tyson, added: “Anyone who marvels at the natural world is in for a treat and should not miss this opportunity to meet Rob and enjoy his stories in such a wonderful setting. We’re delighted to be working with the National Park as the North York Moors are the perfect place for Rob’s event – right in the heart of the nature.”

Rob Cowan is an award-winning journalist and writer and an author of regular columns on nature and travel for the Independent, Independent on Sunday and the Telegraph.

Anyone interested in attending the event, which is £5 per person, is asked to visit Or telephone 01439 772738. Advanced booking advised.

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YLO Needs You!

May 2016

York Light Orchestra - a local amateur orchestra established in 1947 - is looking for a new conductor to take on the baton while our current conductor takes a sabbatical. We need someone for the whole of 2017 (our 70th anniversary year) but ideally to start in September 2016 after our summer break.

We play a wide range of music but concentrating on popular classical pieces, selections from shows, film and television and traditional ‘light’ music. We perform a number of concerts each year for local community groups and to raise money for charity. We rehearse on Thursday evenings at Acomb Methodist Church.

We are also in need of more violins, violas and trumpets for our next concert which will be in Selby Abbey on Saturday 16th July 2016. We don’t hold auditions, just come along to a rehearsal and see what you think.

For more information see our website York Light Orchestra or contact the secretary on (01904) 870759.

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Were you a Cub in York? Or have you been involved with Cubs in York?

May 2016

Haxby and Wigginton Cub Scouts will join other groups across the nation to celebrate the Cubs centenary, an event that hopes to be ‘the Wildest Party Ever’!

Sarah Bellwood, member of the York Cubs100 committee and Leader of the 2nd Haxby and Wigginton Falcons pack, said: “Cub scouting is as popular as ever as York groups prepare to celebrate the centenary.

“We have three events lined up to mark the milestone, and we are hoping for 600 to 700 Cubs to be involved in the celebrations. We are inviting anyone who’s been involved in the past to take part in the festivities.”

First to take place is the ‘Thank You’ event on 18th June in St Sampson’s Square, York. Local Cub groups would like to invite anyone who’s helped with Cub Scouts in the York area as a way of saying a massive ‘thanks’ for their time and effort. Anyone who has been involved in the Cub movement, past or present, can get in touch with Sarah Bellwood, details below, to arrange an official invite. There will be refreshments at the event, an opportunity to share memories and stories and the chance to receive a special commemorative coin.

Event two is a City Camp for all Cub packs, taking place the Snowball Plantation near Stockton-on-the-Forest, York in July. Pack leaders show now have details about this event.

The third and final event takes place on 16th December and will be a huge party for all Cubs, Leaders and helpers to mark the official 100th birthday of the Cub movement. At 19:16hrs precisely, all those present will say ‘The Promise’ in unison, as will all Cub packs up and down the country – an emotional moment to mark the centenary of this wonderful organisation.

And 2016 is a double celebration as the 2nd Haxby and Wigginton Scout Group has its 70th birthday.

The very first Scout group in Haxby and Wigginton was called the 1st Haxby Troop, registered in 1927. Four years later, the 1st Wigginton Scout Group was established. The date of this group’s closure is not certain but in January 1946, the 2nd Haxby and Wigginton Scout Group was formed. Today the group includes two Beaver colonies, three Cub Packs, and two Scout Troops.

If you would further information, contact Sarah Bellwood on or call 0758 3860949

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St Mary’s Church Strensall celebrates 150 years

May 2016

Did you know that this year St Mary’s Church in Strensall celebrates 150 years of service to our community? In-fact, there has been a church on this site for almost 900 years.

The first church, dedicated to St James, was built between 1100 and 1150. Over the years that Norman Church fell into disrepair and a new church was built on the original foundations in 1804. By 1863 it was in a very dilapidated condition so it was replaced. In May 1865, the foundation stone of the present building was laid and the building was consecrated by the Archbishop of York, William Thompson, on 25th July 1866. At that time the name of the church changed from St. James to St Mary the Virgin. We are not sure why the name changed but many churches in the Victorian era were designated St Mary the Virgin.

That was 150 years ago, and the building is still the base from which we prayerfully seek to serve the wider community. We do this by being there for everyone in Strensall and Towthorpe. As well as our popular Sunday services we are there for weddings, baptisms and funerals; running Little Fishes, Junior Church and Soup Socials; supporting the work of Kidz Klub, our Art Group and everyone who uses the church hall, and we endeavour to support the wider community whenever we can.

On Sunday 12th June at 10.30am we will be having a special service of celebration when we will be joined by the Bishop of Selby and many others who have been involved with the life of our church and community in Strensall. If you have any connection with St Mary’s, why not come along and join us? We have so much to give thanks for and you will be very welcome to come and share your stories.

Written by Rev. Martin Harrison

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