IT’S this time of the year when those of us who spend a lot of time tramping about the countryside find ourselves having to take sometimes lengthy detours to avoid ‘curious cows’ - can a year have passed already?

I had thought when my dog grew too old to join me that the cows would be less curious. How wrong I could be. There is also the slight anxiety about walking alone when faced with a mischievous herd of young cattle, one really doesn’t want to take the chance and end up pinned next to a wall when there is no one else about.

And when is it always at the end of a ten mile or so walk when the cattle appear and why always in large, open fields with no cover?

In my experience, neither the quiet, don’t look into their eyes, keep to the wall/fence approach; or the braver, march across the middle of the field and brazen it out, makes any difference. If they feel in the mood, and it does differ, they will give chase.

Just recently I sat on a stile and watched 20 or so young cows menace a family of four. I was just happy it was them being chased and not me,was that wrong? I did linger long enough to make sure they weren’t trampled though.

A couple of days later and I was forced to clamber to the top of a wall, desperately trying not to damage it in any way and incurring the wrath of a farmer, to escape another set of youngsters. One actually playfully got hold of my laces and gave them a tug before eventually losing interest and charging off to join its friends.

Best of all was the herd of pregnant cows, plus a few calves at foot, that stopped me in my tracks at the end of a 15 mile walk.

I reached the barbed wire fence at the same time as the fastest of them and climbed over, no mean task and one fraught with the possibility of slipping and severing a major artery on the wire.

Safely on the other side and I had to inch my way along the side of a deep chasm with the cows bucking and swarming on the other side of the fence. When I did get to a gate the farmer was waiting for me on the other side. He had seen the cows running and wondered why. He hadn’t minded my straying off the footpath and commented I had done the right thing, pregnant cows were ‘far worse than bulls’, he said, adding this particular herd was off to be sold soon. I shall be taking a different route for the next few weeks.

RESIDENTS at a Cross Hills care home sampled a selection of brews from across the world as part of International Tea Day.

The Townend Close tasters tried teas from all parts of the globe, including South America, India, Africa, China and Thailand.

Top of the favourites board were green tea with moringa from Thailand, Provence tea with lavender and rooibos tea with cinnamon from Africa. And all the winning brews were served-up at a vintage-themed afternoon tea.

Vincent Thwaite, 79, a resident at Townend Close for six years, said: “I loved tasting all the teas from around the world, they were certainly very different.”

And fellow resident Joan Middleton, 83, said: “The tasting was very interesting. I’m really a coffee drinker but thoroughly enjoyed trying the teas.”

The event was organised by carer Sylvia Hill and housekeeper Carol Manditsch.

Townend Close manager, Sharon Mackie, said: “We hold a wide array of activities for our residents.

“It is so important to engage residents in different ways to keep their minds active and the tea tasting is a great example of that. It was delightful to see everyone learning more about one of the nation’s favourite drinks and very interesting to see which teas ended-up on top!”

International Tea Day takes place every May.

ON the subject of tea, Airedale Hospital, Steeton, and its Community Charity are urging people to join the nation’s ‘biggest tea break’ on July 5 and help raise money for the incredible people in our NHS who’ve done so much to help everyone get through the pandemic.

Following a year like no the hospital wants as many people as possible to get involved in a national outpouring of love and thanks for NHS staff and volunteers on its birthday by hosting or taking part in an NHS Big Tea on July 5.

Each event can be in person or virtual, with the community, friends, family or at work, and is a chance to reflect and say thank you for everything that NHS staff and volunteers have done and continue to do.

People can set up a JustGiving page and host their own tea party and sell tea, coffee and cake. Or, they can show their support by taking five minutes to enjoy a tea break, texting BIGTEA to 70480 to donate £5 and support Airedale Hospital and Community Charity. Jodie Hearnshaw, manager of Airedale Hospital and Community Charity, said: “We all have a lot to be grateful to NHS staff and volunteers for following this difficult year.

“They have been at the forefront of the response to one of the biggest challenges our country has ever faced. We’ve really appreciated the Airedale community coming together and supporting our hospital over the past year.

“The NHS Big Tea will be an outpouring of joy, love and appreciation, celebrating our NHS staff, the vaccine and all that it is allowing us to do again. It will also be a moment of reflection for the loss of loved ones. We encourage the Airedale community to join the nation’s biggest tea break to raise money for the incredible people in our local NHS.”

Thousands are expected to host events around the country. To get involved and support Airedale Hospital and Community Charity, visit or contact the charity team on or 01535 294870.

A 1970 TRIUMPH Herald that featured in the much-loved television series Last of the Summer Wine is to be sold in Tennants Auctioneers’ motor car, motorcycle and automobilia sale on June 5 with an estimate of between £10,000 and £15,000.

The red Triumph Herald convertible was one of three similar models used in the long-running show, which was on screens from 1973 to 2010. Such was the prominence of the car in the show that Corgi made a miniature Triumph Herald which was sold in a specially themed pack along with a model of the car’s owner Edie Pegden, who played by Thora Hird.

The car has been fully restored, and will feature alongside a host of classic, vintage and luxury cars up for auction in Tennants’ Leyburn salerooms.

An illustrated catalogue will be available at leading up to the sale, and remote bidding is available.

THE wonderful Bancroft Mill engine museum in Barnoldswick (pictured) has been closed of course for several months because of the coronavirus pandemic; but the good news is it is due to open again to visitors in July. The first ‘steaming day’ when people can go in and see the massive engines in operation, is due to take place on July 11 - Covid restrictions allowing.

Meanwhile, the museum’s band of volunteers have been able to return.

Bancroft Mill was the 13th and last mill built in the town. Construction started in 1915, but was delayed by the First World War, and only finished in 1920. James Nutter had died in 1914, but the firm was carried on by his sons, and the ceremonial starting of the mill engine took place in March 1920, when James´ daughter, Eliza, opened the stop valve to set the engine in motion and named “James” and “Mary Jane” after her parents.