THE hunt is on to find the Yorkshire Village of the Year 2019.

Entries are being sought from rural villages across the county for the competition which has been launched by Dalesman magazine, in association with Skipton Building Society.

The winner will be selected by a panel of judges including Emmerdale star Claire King, Yorkshire Shepherdess and author Amanda Owen, ITV weatherman Jon Mitchell, the Yorkshire Vet Julian Norton, poet and broadcaster Ian McMillan, Jacqui Bateson of Skipton Building Society, and Adrian Braddy, editor of Dalesman.

The aim of the competition is to celebrate rural Yorkshire and support, encourage and promote the county’s rural communities.

Mr Braddy said: "Yorkshire is home to more than 1,500 rural villages, each with its own charm, character and identity. These often-ignored communities deserve more attention as they are the lifeblood of our countryside. Of course, a village is nothing without its residents. These small communities only remain vibrant, attractive places thanks to the energy, resourcefulness and spirit demonstrated by those who live and work there.

"Most village halls, shops, churches, pubs, greens, parks, organisations and events would simply disappear without the support of the local community. Behind every flowerbed, defibrillator, broadband scheme and fête is a team of hard-working, selfless people who put themselves out to improve their neighbourhood. Yet, much of this important work is done without recognition and on strictly limited resources, as much of the attention – and funding – is focused on larger towns and cities."

The free-to-enter competition is open to all rural villages in Yorkshire.

Entries are welcome from any community group, parish council, or group of residents who represent their village.

The judges will chose the winner, based on evidence of enterprise, initiative and community spirit as well as how the village is cared for by its residents. The winning village will receive the accolade Yorkshire Village of the Year 2019 and will pick up a cheque for £1,000 to spend on a worthwhile community project.

Entrants must submit up to 400 words, using the form to be found online at: Entries must be received by midday on 30 September 30.