The fourth Settle Storytelling Festival was officially launched by Settle Mayor Joe Lord on Thursday.

He did so by telling a story of the times when the mayors of the town could choose their own successor and how one mayor found an ingenious way to seek out a man of integrity and honesty to follow in his footsteps. His tale showed that wit and the ability to tell a good yarn are also skills required by those in the public domain.

The evening then featured two very different story tellers. The first, Mara Menzies, drew upon both her Scottish and Kenyan heritage to tell two tales – one from each tradition. Cath Little retold one of the stories from the Welsh Mabinogion, a traditional tale of fountains and knights and magical creatures.

The tellers and the tales could not have been more different. However, all four stories demonstrated the secret at the centre of this fantastic festival, that we all enjoy a good story and that a story is so much richer when told among friends.

Gill O’Donnell