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It's the end of an era
We have just returned from the Royal Highland Show. As exhibiting at the show is quite costly, we debated long and hard as to whether the trip would be worthwhile, but as we have quite a number of customers in Scotland we decided it was probably time for a return trip north of the border.
To save on costs we went in the Land Rover and trailer and then camped in the trailer for the duration of the show. It was surprisingly comfortable, warm as toast and much better than having to drive off the showground every night to a hotel or guest house in Edinburgh.
We had a carpet and curtains, gas stove, gas light, comfortable bed, table and chairs, what more could we want? A bit of sunshine would have helped!
They were long days; into the show in the morning before 8pm and the food hall didn’t close until 7pm, so the fact that we could just walk home quite easily was a big bonus. Since then we have been playing catch-up and are now preparing for the Great Yorkshire Show which is next week, followed by Driffield Show and Bingley Show... the list goes on.
In fact, we have a pretty hectic three or four months ahead of us and have a lot of events booked, and because of this, and also for personal reasons, I have had to make a pretty tough decision.
It is over ten years since (March 2002) that I wrote my first contribution for the Craven Herald. At first it was a monthly contribution, but for the last few years I have been writing on a weekly basis.
Sometimes it is an easy task as ideas flow and words come easily, but on other occasions it is quite difficult to come up with something new and different to talk about, particularly when the farming year is a cycle and we are doing the same thing with the granola business week in, week out. In recent weeks on several occasions I have found myself at midnight or 1am, sitting in bed with laptop on my knee with just a few hours before the deadline scratching my head trying to think of something new and interesting to write and when that happens and it increasingly seems to do so, then I think it is time to move on.
I know, from the letters that I have received and from the comments that so many people have made, that my column has been read and enjoyed, and I am therefore sorry to have to be saying that this will be my last contribution.
Over the years, it has been a pleasure to share some of our life and experiences with Herald readers and the generous letters and comments that I have received have often been quite overwhelming. I can only say a huge thank-you to everyone who has taken the trouble to write, e-mail or just say how much they enjoy reading my musings. For me, it has been very rewarding, and I just hope that somewhere along the way I have given some insight into the life of a Yorkshire Dales farming family. Thank you.