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Sunday Email: Issue 194

Welcome to the Sunday Email.

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Village Hall – bookings cancelled due to water leak
The Village Hall Committee regretfully announces that due to a serious water leak, bookings over this weekend and in to next week have had to be cancelled. The water leak is somewhere underneath the entrance and terrace close to the front door. On Friday an exploratory dig was undertaken which found evidence of plenty of water, but unfortunately did not find the source of the leak. The water has had to be turned off meaning that there is no water available to the kitchen or toilets and access to the hall will be difficult until the problem is resolved, the exploratory hole filled in and excavated mud cleared away.

The draining company TWC will be returning on Monday morning to continue digging the original hole and at least one more dig in another part of the grounds. The investigation may find the source of the problem but then consideration will have to be given to how to put things right. It might in the end be a straight forward matter, but equally may be more complicated and take longer to sort out.

So far the committee has been in touch with those who had made bookings through to Wednesday evening and this is the position:

  • Sunday – tonight’s quiz – cancelled.
  • Monday – Art class – moved to Thirsk Town Hall (see separate item below)
  • Monday – Home Education Class – cancelled.
  • Monday – Fitness Boot Camp – cancelled.
  • Tuesday – Boccia – cancelled.
  • Tuesday – Squirrels & Beavers – cancelled.
  • Tuesday – Bible class – cancelled.
  • Wednesday – Warm Hub – cancelled (see separate item below).
  • Wednesday – Cubs – cancelled.

A decision about bookings from Thursday onwards will be made in the light of developments. Hopefully the work will be successfully concluded in the first half of the week, but there is no certainty and further disruption may be inevitable.

The committee apologises for the massive inconvenience this problem has caused and hopes that hall users will understand and bear with us during this unfortunate period.

Village Quiz
TONIGHT: Sunday 21 January – The quiz has been cancelled. Hopefully it will be back as normal next Sunday.
The Misfits – although with a slightly different line-up – again took the honours at last week’s quiz. The team was Jim, Andy, Mac and Lynne. The quizmaster was Charles, who a week earlier had been a member of the Misfits when they were the winners.
Thirsk Garden Centre cafeteria
The cafe is closed TODAY (21 January) as the final part of the kitchen and serving area refurbishment is being undertaken.
St Columba’s Services

  • TODAY – Sunday (21 January) at 10.45am – Choral Matins
  • Sunday 28 January at 10.45am – Holy Communion
  • Sunday 5 February at 6.30pm – Choral Evensong

Everyone is most welcome to come along for any of these services. Refreshments are served after every Sunday morning service.

Chip ‘n Dales
The Chip ‘n Dales fish and chip van is now back on its regular day – Fridays 5 ’til 7pm.

Paul and Karen are now taking bookings for events, such as weddings, parties, corporate events and Christenings, in 2024/25. For more information please contact them via –

Warm Hub lunch
The Warm Hub lunch scheduled for Wednesday 24 January has been cancelled due to the water leak at the Village Hall.

However, Karen Morley will be preparing a meal in her own kitchen for those people who normally get a delivery to their home. So if that includes you, the service will be the same as usual.

The next Warm Hub lunch will be held on Wednesday 7 February.

Community Works seeks more volunteers
The Thirsk based charity, Community Works, is on the lookout for more people to join its volunteering team. The organisation is at the heart of the community and plays a key part in changing and improving lives in Thirsk and the surrounding area. Whether you want to make new friends, develop your skills or simply help make a difference in the local community, there’s a role for you. For more information contact the charity at Community House, 14a Market Place, Thirsk or call 01845 524494.
A year in North Yorkshire – photo competition
An organisation called North Yorkshire Youth is holding a photographic competition to find images that will make up its 2025 calendar. The theme is ‘A year in North Yorkshire’ and any young photographer aged 11 and over and who lives in North Yorkshire, can enter. Check out the poster here for more information.
Vinyasa Flow Yoga
Lucy Day is holding Vinyasa Flow yoga sessions at Rainton Village Hall every Saturday morning at 9am. If you are interested in attending, please email or call 07970 049928 for details.
Yoga with Alex
‘Yoga with Alex’ classes are held at two locations near Topcliffe – Thirsk Town Hall and Coronation Hall, Boroughbridge. See poster here for more details. These classes are suitable for anyone wishing to improve or regain their balance, strength and mental well-being. Call 07927 141616 or email Alex on
The RItz Cinema, Thirsk

  • To Thursday 26 January – matinee on Wednesday 24 January – Ferrari
  • Friday 26 January to Thursday 1 February – matinee on Wednesday 31 January – Anyone But You
  • Friday 2 to Thursday 8 February – matinee on Wednesday 7 February – One Life.
  • Friday 9 to Thursday 15 February – matinee on Wednesday 14 February – The Boys in the Boat
  • Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 February – matinees only – The Inseparables.
  • Friday 16 to Thursday 22 February – matinee on Wednesday 21 February – The Holdovers.

Opening times: evenings – doors open at 7pm for 7.30pm. Matinees – doors open at 2pm for 2.30pm.

Thorp Perrow
The popular Arboretum is offering all visitors half price entrance until Friday 9 February 2024. Tickets can be pre booked on their website – just enter the code ‘halfprice’ in the promotions box and click apply Alternatively you can purchase tickets from the admission area upon arrival.

Some events coming up

  • Wednesday 24 January – Rose Pruning Workshop – The first session in the spring flower series. Learn all about the theory and techniques of rose pruning. Find out why pruning is essential for healthy growth before using your new-found knowledge and skills on specimens in the Arboretum.
  • Wednesday 7 February – A Literacy Celebration of Winter – Enjoy winter-inspired poetry and prose in this workshop of walking, talking and lively discussion. With well-known (and not so well-known) works of literature both historic and modern, see winter through the eyes of those with the right words in the right order in this casual workshop celebrating seasonal literature.
  • Wednesday 21 February – Snowdrop Workshop – The second in the spring flower series. A hands-on workshop where you will learn to identify different varieties of snowdrop (Galanthus), propagate the seeds, plant the bulbs ready to take home…and take part in some snowdrop conservation in the Arboretum.
  • Wednesday 6 March – Spring Pruning Workshop – Another in the spring flower series. Learn all about early spring pruning in this practical, hands-on workshop covering the fundamentals of what, when, where and how to prune before using your new-found skills in the Arboretum.

More information and bookings:

Rural Arts events

  • Wednesday 24 January – a workshop introducing punch needle embroidery to beginners. Participants will produce a patterned coaster. 10.30am – 12.30pm. £20.
  • Thursday 25 January – ‘Sing, Sign and Sensory’ – a fun and engaging activity for children aged up to two years of age. These enchanting performance workshops presented by Effectus Theatre combine the power of music, sign and sensory play to create a magical experience. 10.30 to 11.15am. £7.50.

Visit Rural Art’s website – Home – Rural Arts for more details or to make a booking. Or just pop in to The Courthouse in Thirsk if you’d prefer a face-to-face chat.

Bible talk at the Village Hall cancelled
The final meeting in the series of undenominational bible talks at the Village Hall, scheduled for Tuesday 23 January, has been cancelled due to the water leak.
Comedy Night at The Angel
The next Comedy Night at The Angel will be held on Thursday 25 January. Doors open at 7.30pm and the show starts at 8pm. See poster here for details. More info and tickets from the venue or online at: or call 01845 578000
Art classes

The weekly art class scheduled for tomorrow (22 January) in the Village Hall has been relocated to Thirsk Town Hall due to the water leak. Same time as usual.

It’s hoped that the special class, ‘Paint British Coastal views in acrylics’, scheduled for Thursday 25 January – will be able to proceed as planned. There’ll be more clarity about this early in the week. Rebecca Thompson will be in touch with those who have booked a place to confirm details.

Here is a list of other upcoming fun painting and art experiences and workshops that Rebecca is promoting at Topcliffe & Asenby Village Hall over the next couple of months:

  • The next block of five weekly art classes starts on Monday 19 February.
  • Thursday morning, 29 February – ‘Paint Monet’s Garden inspired artwork in oils’.
  • Thursday 21 March, 10.30am to 2.30pm – Learn to draw and sketch with more confidence. A four-hour workshop with helpful tips and techniques and support with creating your own drawing and sketches of a range of still life arrangements. All materials will be provided and refreshments are included.

And there are alternative dates for classes held at Thirsk Town Hall:

  • Friday night, 26 January – ‘Paint Pretty Coastal views in acrylics – with fish and chip supper’
  • Friday night 1 March – ‘Paint Monet’s Garden inspired artwork in oils’.

Plus this special class at the Himalayan Gardens at Grewelthorpe:

  • Friday 17 May, 10-4pm (day retreat) – ‘Paint a Garden Landscape in oils’.

Book online at

Five Loose Chippings
Some readers will remember the name and performance of the Thirsk-based group of musicians, the Five Loose Chippings, who a few years ago played at our Village Hall. Well, there’s another opportunity to see them locally when they perform at The Courthouse in Thirsk at 7.30pm on Friday 26 January. The band has made a name for themselves playing a variety of music from blues, country and bluegrass through to pop classics and western swing. No set entry charge: pay as you decide. Online at
Big Garden Birdwatch
The RSPB’s annual Big Garden Birdwatch 2024 takes place between 26 and 28 January. You don’t need to have a garden: any outdoor space near where you live will work just fine. To take part in Big Garden Birdwatch, you’ll need to put aside just one hour any time over the weekend and count all the different birds you see in your garden, balcony or local park. When you’re done, go online and tell the RSPB what you saw. It’s that simple. For more information and to sign up for the birdwatch, go to
Topcliffe Parish Council
The next meeting of Topcliffe Parish council will be held at 7pm on Thursday 1 February in the Village Hall.
Sessay Comedy Night
There’s a Comedy Night being staged in our neighbouring village of Sessay on Wednesday 7 February. It’s at the village hall and starts at 7.30pm, though the doors and bar open at 7pm. There are more details on the poster linked here.
The Catton Kitchen
Proprietors Amy and Hugo are working with teams from the Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors National Parks, along with the Heritage Fund UK, to bring ‘Dark Skies In The Vale’ events to Catton village. The dates are Friday 23 and Saturday 24 February from 6 to 8.30pm. So, if you fancy an evening under the stars with storytelling, nature walks, astronomers and a serving of some home grown/reared food, make a booking as soon as possible. There’s a charge for food but entry is free – tickets from

And a reminder that the Catton Kitchen is open as normal over the winter months – Friday and Saturdays 10am to 2pm and Sundays 10am to 12noon.

Traders in Topcliffe, Asenby and surrounding area
There’s a wide range of small businesses operating in Topcliffe and Asenby and in close proximity to our two villages. Check them out when you need work doing or a service provided: it’s great to be able to support local! The list is here.
Bin Collections
For the foreseeable future, the specific dates of waste collections are not going to be listed in the Sunday Email. This is because the information taken from North Yorkshire Council’s website has proven to be unreliable particularly as they often make last minute changes. This has made it look like I am making mistakes and presenting incorrect information. Residents can easily check their own collection information via the council’s website and I will include a link to the bin collections page. I’m sorry if this is inconvenient for those without easy access to a computer.

The Sowerby Household Waste Recycling Centre is open 8.30am to 4pm every day, apart from Wednesdays.

That’s all for this week. Keep safe and remain well.
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