ANDY Swinscoe of The Courtyard Dairy in Settle (pictured) is understandably over the moon after landing a prestigious role as a visiting lecturer at The University of Gastronomic Science in Bra, Italy. Bra is home of the 'Slow Food Movement' and has a worldwide reputation for protecting and promoting an attitude of quality, traditionally-made food. The Bra international university specialises in the study of gastronomy, food cultures and heritage, food ecologies, and food communications. As part of the Masters’ curriculum, students learn about food cultures from all over the world. And now, previous Cheesemonger of the Year, and owner of Settle’s multi-award-winning Courtyard Dairy, Andy has been recruited as a visiting professor to lecture the Masters students over a two-day session on British Cheese, concentrating on helping them to understand the key events that influenced cheese development in the British Isles and to recognise the unique textures and characters of key British cheeses. He landed the job after cheese aficionado Juliet Harbutt - of The World Cheese Book - retired from the job after emigrating. But before leaving, she suggested Andy take over. "Andy is absolutely passionate about cheese and cheesemakers, he’s a true affineur and is a very good educator and speaker – he’s ideal for the role," she said. Unsurprisingly, Andy is overjoyed at the prospect of teaching international students from all over the world about British cheese. “I can’t wait to get out there and let them taste what Britain now has to offer: from traditional cheddars to fabulous modern day inventions like St James. Britain deserves its place on the international cheese map. The industry has come on leaps and bounds even since I’ve been working in it - there are new small scale unpasteurised farm-cheese makers coming through all the time - and I’m really pleased the university thinks that it’s important for the students to learn about British cheese and its heritage.”

OX-eye daisies are just one of the native wildflowers being encouraged to grow in the old churchyard of St Oswald's in Horton-in-Ribblesdale. The Forest School project involving the youngest children from Horton in Ribblesdale Primary School has been helping to introduce species of wildflowers into the old churchyard. Over the last few months, under the guidance of Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust,

seeds have been sown and seedlings planted to encourage them to flourish in the churchyard. Mowing has even been suspended to allow them to bloom and set seed. The churchyard is now one of the sites in the Meadowlink project committed to the restoration of wildflower rich areas in communities across the Dales. And as part of next weekend's St Oswald’s Festival weekend, Tanya St Pierre from the YDMT will give a talk describing the project and inspiring gardeners in the village to create wildlife patches which will create a wildflower superhighway and help reduce biodiversity loss. The children of Forest School are understandably very excited about the flowers growing from their planting sessions earlier in the year. Tanya’s talk will take place on Friday July, 29 at 7.30pm in the church, all welcome.

FRIENDS of Skipton's homeless man, Tinker, will have noticed he has been looking more hirsute than usual. Tinker, who this month celebrates a year of living on Skipton's streets, has been growing his beard and hair for the past several weeks so he can have it all shaved off for charity. Tinker hopes to raise as much money as he can for his friends at Skipton Community Hub, based on Belmont Bridge, and for Marie Curie Cancer Care. The grand shaving is due to take place at The Red Lion, Skipton at 4pm on Sunday, August 7. There will also be a raffle and tombola to add to the fun. Tinker hopes all his many friends will come along and support his efforts.

PUNISHMENT handed out to five boys from Barnoldswick found guilty of thieving a hundred years ago included a 'sound thrashing' and being banned from the cinema for a year. Skipton Petty Sessions' children's court heard how the boys - aged between eight and 11 years old - had entered the premises of a coal merchant in Barnoldswick and stolen a number of items, including a double-barrelled shotgun, eggs, three perambulators and a door key. When approached by a police officer, the boys gave varying replies, before fetching all the items from their homes. The chairman of the bench complained that children were encouraged to go to the cinema by their parents and later got up to similar larks they had seen in films. The parents admitted letting them go to the cinema, but that they also attended Sunday School. After ticking off the parents for not controlling their children and telling them to give them a 'good thrashing' the chairman put the boys under probation for a year and banned them from going to the cinema, also for a year.

THE Samaritans of Pendle, Burnley, Craven and Rossendale are due to spend Sunday, July 24 at Cafe Cargo, next to the canal in Foulridge, to help raise awareness of the many services they offer to those in need and, also, to bring in vital funds to support their work. They have issued an open invitation to people to pop in and say hello to the volunteers who will be at the cafe from 10am to 6pm, with a giant bottle and chocolate tombola, as well as some great bargain books. Plus, there's a chance to find out more about volunteering with the Samaritans and how to get involved.

LADY members of Craven Couch 2.5k are busy training to take part in the Skipton Park Run on Saturday to raise money for Yorkshire Cancer Research. Taking part in the weekly parkrun in Aireville Park will mark the culmination of 12 weeks of training with North Yorkshire Sport in a programme aimed at getting people off the couch and teaching them to run. To find out more about the group, and how to support the members, go to its Facebook page Craven Couch 2 5k.

The Coniston Hotel, Coniston Cold, is celebrating once again after its relatively new spa has been named as a finalist in the Spa of the Year, in the North East category of the Professional Beauty Regional Awards. The spa, which opened towards the end of last year, was praised for its professionalism, innovation and customer service. The winners will be announced at an evening awards ceremony in Manchester in September, after which winners and high-scoring finalists will go through to the finals of the national Professional Beauty Awards 2017, to be held in London in February.

Computers are very useful tools - but there are plenty of people who could do with some helpful advice on how to use them. Help is at hand at Bentham Library where a computer club meets on the last Thursday of every month. Library staff and volunteers from the library's friends group can offer practical advice on using computers, including contacting friends and family, staying safe, shopping online and browsing the web - without any confusing jargon. The club is free and booking is not necessary. It next meets on July 30 from 2pm to 4pm.