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The Thirsk blog

Volunteers meet "The Yorkshire Vets"
By Ted.  Last updated Wed 18 Nov at 8.25pm.

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Thirsk Information Centre volunteers  are pictured here with “The Yorkshire Vets” at their recent triumphant visit to the Leeds Arena. They were presented with the Visitor Information Award, (sponsored by BBC Yorkshire), at the Welcome to Yorkshire White Rose Awards on Monday 9th November 2015. As can be seen the volunteers also met “The Yorkshire Vets”, Julian Norton and Peter Wright,  who informed them that a further two series are being prepared as a result of the success of the first, six-part series.

If you wish to view the first series- particularly if you are abroad- please follow the link to access Channel 5’s online viewing website: 

Look out for the series on your home television services in the future as it is sure to be exported, as happened with the original James Herriot “All Creatures Great and Small” TV series.

The rector who was friends with Turner & Ruskin
By Peter.  Last updated Tue 17 Nov at 9.09pm.

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William Towler Kingsley 1815 to 1916, former rector of South Kilvington, was once a famous figure in the Thirsk area. Friends with Turner and Ruskin; an extraordinary polymath whose talents and interests embraced geology, gardening, photography, drawing, astronomy, organ building and wood carving, he is now almost forgotten.
After years of research, Helen Crawford has written a booklet outlining his interesting life, including such unforgettable episodes as the failure to discover Neptune thanks to a cup of tea; and the unhappy death of a prostitute in Cambridge which led to William being labelled a murderer by the newspapers.
From every sale, one pound is donated to the fund for the restoration of St. Wilfrid's, South Kilvington, Thirsk. Email for details.

Best TIC in Yorkshire
By Peter.  Last updated Tue 10 Nov at 1.22am.

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The thirty volunteers who operate Thirsk Tourist Information were surprised and delighted to be awarded the Visitor Information Award, sponsored by BBC Yorkshire, at the Welcome to Yorkshire White Rose Awards on Monday.

The award follows five seasons of growth since Thirsk Tourist Information became independent of Hambleton District Council in April 2011.

Harry Gration from BBC Look North presenting the award to Peter Rush said: “And what's amazing, they are all volunteers“.

We are a welcoming group of volunteers with a wealth of knowledge and a passion for Thirsk and the surrounding region. We are currently open Mon-Sat 10am-4pm.

Thirsk on TV Monday evening
By Peter.  Last updated Sun 8 Nov at 9.32am.

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You can see Thirsk and its information centre on BBC1 Look North at 6.30pm on Monday. Be sure to tune to the Yorkshire, not the Newcastle edition. We are finalists for a White Rose Award at the Leeds Arena on Monday evening.

In the picture you can see Ted Naisbitt, one of the 30 volunteers, being interviewed by Danni Hewson - the BBC Look North Business and Money correspondent.

We are a welcoming group of volunteers with a wealth of knowledge and a passion for Thirsk and the surrounding region. We open Mon-Sat 10am-4pm.

Fireworks on Thirsk Racecourse
By Peter.  Last updated Wed 7 Oct at 9.22am.

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Saturday 7 November. Fireworks Display at 5.15pm organised by Thirsk Rotary.

Family (2+2) £10 (£8 in advance); Adults £5 (£4 in advance); Aged 12-15 £2 on entry; Under 11's Free.

Tickets are now on sale at the Information Centre in the middle of the Market Place and at White Rose Book Cafe.

Thirsk is on TV Channel 5, 8pm Tuesdays
By Peter.  Last updated Sun 13 Sep at 5.00pm.

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'A Yorkshire Vet'

I have just seen a preview of the first episode of this new 6-part TV series. It follows Julian and Peter with other vets and nurses in their daily life running an independent veterinary practice in Thirsk. Although using modern methods and equipment, you will see strong connections with a vet's life as described in the James Herriot books and the film 'All Creatures Great and Small'. I recommend you watch - it is not to be missed.

'A Yorkshire Vet' is a documentary series following life in Skeldale Veterinary Centre, James Herriot's former practice, now situated in a purpose-built facility in the picturesque market town of Thirsk in North Yorkshire. In the first episode on Tuesday evening Julian Norton treats a much-loved moggie with a badly swollen eye, before being called out to help a ewe deliver twin lambs.

Royal Academy Show comes to Thirsk
By Peter.  Last updated Tue 1 Sep at 6.07pm.

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The Original Print Show in Thirsk is a chance to see remarkable new work by leading and emerging artists specially selected from this year’s Royal Academy Summer Show by Norman Ackroyd CBE RA.

It includes the work of 20 Royal Academicians and other celebrated names from the art world. The Show includes every genre of printmaking: from etchings, engravings, lithographs and screenprints to digital prints, guaranteeing a colourful and wide range of work from some of the most celebrated names in the art world to lesser known printmakers.

You can see the Show at the Zillah Bell Gallery in Kirkgate, Thirsk. It is open Monday to Saturday 10am-1pm & 2pm- 5pm until the end of October.

Picture: London maps of days, Etching and aquatint, Mychael Barratt

A trip on the Moors Bus
By Mo.  Last updated Mon 31 Aug at 9.26am.

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The Moors Bus runs from Thirsk to the North Yorkshire National Park at 11am & 3.20pm on Sundays & Bank Holidays until 27th September. On 7 Sep Sutton Bank is closed for repairs. Please contact us for a possible timetable change.

When I woke up yesterday the beautiful weather (and the dreaded thought of the F1 Grand Prix on the t.v. at home) decided me that it would be lovely to take another trip on the Moors Bus so I was at the bus stop at 11 am (with my packed lunch) and the bus arrived exactly on time. One of the others in the queue told me that on the previous Sunday's bus there was, literally, 'standing room only' so I was hoping it wouldn't happen again – but it almost did. Bythe time we left Thirsk there was only one empty seat!

The bus made its way slowly and steadily up Sutton Bank but at the Visitor Centre at the top there was a hiccup! The driver noticed a trickle of water running out from somewhere at the back of the vehicle so we had to wait a while until it was sorted. Another lady from Thirsk and I decided to have a coffee and scone whilst waiting but just as we'd had our first sips the bus was ready for the off. We wrapped up our scones and were on our way again, this time without some passengers who'd left to go walking and with some different passengers who'd been waiting for our bus.

At Helmsley 8 passengers stayed on the bus but, because of the delay, we'd missed the 128 connection so I decided to repeat my previous delightful journey to Stokesley, via Rievaulx Abbey, Newgate Bank (where 1 man alighted to walk back to Helmsley), and Chop Gate. The sun shone all the time, the scenery was just so beautiful - and the heather was at its best. I took some photos through the bus windows but they just couldn't do justice to show how breath taking all of the scenery was.

In Stokesley Pat from Thirsk and I sat in the sun by the beck and ate our picnics, as I'd done on my previous visit, and watched the ducks. We also did a little shopping (quite a number of shops were open, including the Co-op, Boyes, a bread shop, some cafes and charity shops). An hour later the bus returned so we got back on for another delightful run, and admired the views from a different direction.

We arrived back in Thirsk, still in sunshine, at 3 pm. It was a really lovely 4 hours bus ride and I look forward to doing it again.

New public library for Thirsk
By Peter.  Last updated Thu 13 Aug at 7.59am.

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The new library at Meadowfields opens on Monday 24th August. There are two floors with hundreds of new books and great new facilities for reading, storytelling and more.

The upper floor in particular is full of light and has great views over the town. The whole library is a wonderful place just to come and read a book, use one of the public computers or log in to the free wi-fi.

Regular activities include a weekly storytime for pre-schoolers, a 'code club' for school age children and a film discussion group.

The library opening times are: Mon 10am-5pm, Tue 1pm-5pm, Wed closed, Thu 10am-5pm, Fri 10am-7pm, Sat 9.30am-12.30pm, Sun closed.

White Rose Awards announcement
By Peter.  Last updated Mon 21 Sep at 9.19am.

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The Welcome to Yorkshire White Rose Awards is the largest celebration of tourism excellence in the UK and this year Thirsk Tourist Information is a finalist. The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony which will take place at the Leeds Arena on Monday 9th November.

Ideal present: Thirsk Calendar 2016
By Peter.  Last updated Sun 21 Jun at 1.36pm.

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James Herriot's town in pictures throughout 2016.

CLICK HERE to see all the photographs of Thirsk, month by month.

The size 15 x 42.5cm (6 x 17 inches) and the calendar is spiral-bound at the top, with a wall-hanging loop. There is a Thirsk picture and a calendar for each month of 2016. See all the months HERE.

You can buy calendars ONLINE or in the Information Office in the middle of Thirsk Market Place. If you buy online we will post it to anywhere in the world.

James Herriot's Yorkshire
By Peter.  Last updated Mon 4 May at 9.25pm.

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"Walking face on to the scented breeze, I felt the old tingle of wonder at being alone on the wide moorland where nothing stirred and the spreading miles of purple blossom and green turf reached away until it met the hazy blue of the sky." James Herriot in 'Vet in Harness'.

James Herriot lived in Thirsk. He wrote 'All Creatures Great and Small' and many other books about his life as a country vet in Thirsk, which he called Darrowby.

Thirsk is between the North Yorks Moors and the Yorkshire Dales so is an ideal place from which to explore both. What's more, in Thirsk you can visit the 'World of James Herriot', housed where he worked and lived.

James Herriot statue unveiled (video)
By Peter.  Last updated Sat 28 Mar at 3.27pm.

Ian Ashton, manager of The World of James Herriot introduces James Berresford, CEO of VisitEngland who unveils the statue of Alf Wight (aka James Herriot). Then Jim Wight, a vet like his father, tells what it was like living with a budding author.

A regular Farmers' Market for Thirsk
By Peter.  Last updated Wed 18 Mar at 2.09pm.

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Thirsk will get it's own Farmers Market every fourth Saturday of the month. Northern Dales Farmers Markets are starting one up at Thirsk Auction Mart. There are 17 confirmed stalls so far but with the support of the public the market will hopefully grow as the venue could accommodate a lot more.

The market is held in the fresh air in the hard standing area outside the auction mart and there will be ample free parking available for customers. There will be a good range of products for customers because of a fairly strict policy on stalls not being duplicated. So far confirmed are a fish stall, dexter beef, free-range eggs, free-range pork, home-made spices combinations for currys, plants, game, bread, rapeseed oil, preserves, cakes, preserves and buffalo meat.

The first market starts at 8:30am on Saturday 28th March.

Free WiFi in the Market Place
By Peter.  Last updated Wed 30 Apr at 8.57pm.

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Free WiFi is now available in Thirsk Market Place.

To log in, connect to 'Thirsk Free WiFi'. A few seconds later on a tablet or smartphone a notification to complete the WiFi connection might appear, otherwise open the browser. Accept the Terms & Conditions, complete a simple form and you are connected.

The free WiFi is a collaboration between Telecom Yorkshire, Thirsk Tourist Information, Hambleton District Council and the Thirsk Business Association. It is being provided at almost no cost to the ratepayers.

In addition, many of the Market Place shops and coffee bars provide free WiFi.

James Herriot's favourite view
By Peter.  Last updated Fri 7 Feb at 9.02pm.

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The view over the Vale of York from the top of Sutton Bank was loved by Alf Wight, the James Herriot of 'All Creatures Great and Small' and other books about his life as a country vet. At this time of year in Winter you can see the multiple shades of green and purple.

County third in the World for Tourists
By john.  Last updated Wed 13 Nov at 9.42am.

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Its now official, Yorkshire is one of the best destinations in the world for tourists.

The county's travel guide listed it as one of the top ten in the world. Only Sikkin in India and the Kimberley in Australia, were ahead of Yorkshire in the Lonely Planet`s Best in Travel guide for 2014

Endorsements rarely come much better than this, from a guide that has a worldwide reputation across tourism and informing visitors.

Listing the county as one of the best regions in the world for visitors in the coming year is in recognition of it being a fantastic all-rounder: with some of the most stunning scenery in the country, dynamic cities, friendly people and a burgeonning food scene.

In 2014 this welcoming region of rugged moorlands, heritage homes and cosy pubs will be able to hold its head even higher when the Tour de France begins it Grand Depart  

Thirsk Morning newspaper
By Peter.  Last updated Fri 5 Jun at 9.36pm.

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Thirsk Morning is a single sheet newspaper for
visitors to Thirsk and for local residents.

It gives you vital information in planning a day out. Included are the weather forecast from the BBC and a snapshot of Thirsk Market Place. Both are less than an hour old whenever the newspaper is printed.

Following the weather and picture are two articles about fascinating places to visit. These articles change so that you will see new interesting stories every day.

Lastly there is a list of events happening today and, if there is space, some events for tomorrow.

If you will be travelling to North Yorkshire please print the newspaper in the days before you come.

Click HERE to see the latest edition of Thirsk Morning, produced less than an hour ago.

Please print the sheet rather than viewing it online.

Thirsk Shopping Week in 1930
By Peter.  Last updated Thu 28 Feb at 4.59pm.

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In 1930 Thirsk organised a 'Shopping Week' to promote local businesses. At TTI we are helping with 2013's promotions. In 1930 the equivalent of this website was a booklet you will find HERE and the following is a taster from it. We have different events now but things don't change too much in Thirsk!

Saturday, May 31st, 2 p.m. Opening speech by T. J. Lynch, Esq., Chairman of the Thirsk Parish Council. Spotting and Error Hunting begins. The Thirsk & Sowerby Prize Band will give two Concerts in the Market Place, at 2-4 p.m. and 6-9 p.m.

Monday, June 2nd. Spotting and Hunting will be in full swing. Display judging by the public should take place,and entries sent in for the Safety First Driving Competition.

Tuesday, June 3th. Spotting and Hunting continues. In the evening the Safety First Driving Competition will commence at 6-30 p.m., from the Market Place, and continue for several hours. Be there to see the starters, and watch for the finishers.

Wednesday, June 4th. The Athletic Club are co-operating with the Chamber of Trade in arranging a pleasant time at the Athletic Club Ground. A Special Cricket Match between Thirsk 1st and York Revellers, will take piace in the afternoon. Tea will be served in the grounds. In the evening the T. & S. P. S. B. will play Dance Music.

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