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Sunday Email: Issue 201

Welcome to your Sunday Email.

Thank you for the lovely messages some of you sent after reading last week’s 200th Sunday Email. It is good to know that the weekly newsletter is still appreciated…and even ‘keenly anticipated’. It seems that receiving and reading the email has become as much a part of Sunday breakfast as tea and toast.

One message in particular was most heart warming. It came from Swaleside Park residents Phil and Janet Goodall who said: "Many congratulations on reaching the 200th edition of your Sunday email. We live in Nottinghamshire but regularly visit Topcliffe as we have a holiday home on Swaleside Park. Reading your Sunday email keeps us in touch with the ‘day-to-day’ events of this wonderful community. Your email and regular Tattler newsletter play a major part in the structure of the community and we thank you for your commitment and hard work in this respect."

It is pleasing that Phil and Janet feel such an affinity with Topcliffe.

Doug Allan
07785 223707

Village Hall committee members
The Village Hall Committee is continuing its search for new members. Its appeal in the recent Tattler and last week’s Sunday Email hasn’t resulted in any volunteers stepping forward so far, but the success of yesterday’s coffee morning when dozens of residents turned out to give their support, suggest that there is a genuine. to support the most important community facility our villages have.

The new Bookings Administrator, Helen Fothergill, will join the cpmmittee, but more volunteers are needed as a number of existing, long-serving members, including the Chairman and the Treasurer, are retiring this year.

As these changes fast approach, new members of all ages and backgrounds are needed to ensure that the village hall remains a viable and successful. In particular, someone who is well organised and comfortable with numbers is needed to take on the job of treasurer – an absolutely crucial role. The current treasurer is happy to provide a six-month induction period to guide and support the new person whilst they familiarise themselves with the work.

If you are interested in stepping forward to help out, please contact Andrew Eckersley on 07966 619016 or by emailing alieneck4000

Coffee Morning raises funds for Village Hall
The coffee morning held yesterday at the Village Hall was an amazing success. It’s not certain how many attended, but the hall was full and extra chairs and tables had to be put out as more and more people arrived. Organisers Karen and Malcolm Morley, and their many helpers, put on a wonderful selection of cakes and other goodies. It was a most enjoyable occasion and it raised more than £800 for village hall funds.

Karen has asked that a big thank you is given to everyone who baked for the event, to those who provided raffle prizes, those who volunteered to serve refreshments and to those who popped in on the day.

And you’ll probably all agree that Karen deserves a special thank you all of her own for the fundraising she does in our community.

St Columba’s Services

  • TODAY – Sunday 10 March at 10.45am – Mothering Sunday Holy Communion
  • Wednesday 13 March at 7pm – Lent Compline
  • Saturday 16 March at 7pm – Northallerton Male Voice Choir (see details in list below)
  • Sunday 17 March at 10.45am – Sung Matins
  • Wednesday 20 March at 2pm – Topcliffe Academy Easter Service.
  • Wednesday 20 March at 7pm – Lent Compline
  • Sunday 24 March at 10.45am – Palm Sunday Holy Communion
  • Wednesday 27 March at 7pm – Lent Compline
  • Friday 29 March at 2pm – Good Friday Reflection led by Rev Robert Williamson.
  • Saturday 30 March at 7pm – Easter Vigil led by Rev. Robert Williamson and Choral Mass, including Mozart’s Coronation Mass featuring organist Matthew Atherton and the church choir.

The service of Compline each Wednesday in Lent is a short evening service consisting of reflective prayers and readings. It takes about 15 minutes and it is a lovely peaceful way to close a busy day. Everyone is most welcome to come along.

Refreshments are served after every Sunday morning service.

Village Quiz
TONIGHT: Sunday 10 March – The quiz is on at Topcliffe & Asenby Village Hall at 8pm.
Winners of last week’s quiz
The Long Street Mafia – Malcolm, Andy and Jim – were the winners of the quiz prepared by Doug. Well done to them and everyone who took part.
Bridge hit by car
It actually took a bit longer than most people forecast: the repaired parapet of Topcliffe Bridge managed to go seven months before being crashed into by a car. Luckily the damage is not too bad – more scrapes and paint than stonework impact. Once again, this incident has led to calls for a solution to the problem, such as traffic calming measure or reduced speed limits.
Northern Power Grid to dig up Front Street…again!
Front Street will this week be dug up again as Northern Power Grid tackle a repair to underground cables near the junction with Dean’s Square. Work will start on Monday 11 and last through to Friday 15 March. All households in the area near to where the work will take place have had letters about the disruption. But motorists too will be affected. See plan of work here. The excavation planned is marked in orange.

Power to houses around the work area will be switched off from 9am to 3.30pm on Thursday 14 March.

Local golf club seeks new members
A nine hole golf club on Topcliffe’s doorstep is looking for new members…and since this article appeared in last week’s Tattler, a few potential members have made enquiries. So, if you’re interested please get in touch with the club.

Thistle Hill Golf Club is on the Alanbrooke Barracks site, just outside Topcliffe on the Busby Stoop road. It a very accessible, informal and friendly club which gives incredible value for money. It is an ideal place for beginners to learn the game and also an ideal feeder club for those who then want to move to 18-hole clubs at some stage. The club offers a quiet place to practice and play on ‘real hole’ rather than a driving range and is a perfect place for mature golfers who need a shorter and flatter round. There’s very good car parking.

If you want to hear more or arrange a visit, please contact Tony Elgie on 07842 449412 or email him at tony.elgie1

Asenby still needs Parish Councillors
There has been limited response to the publicity in last Sunday’s Email and recent edition of The Tattler for village residents to step forward to fill two vacancies on Asenby Parish Council. The low level of interest in serving the local community means that the viability of the Parish Council is in doubt. If residents don’t step forward, then Parish Council matters and decisions may be taken over by North Yorkshire Council.

Nobody really wants to see that happen. So please, consider whether you can play a part in village affairs and decision-making. It is not an arduous task though it’s a role that carries certain responsibilities. Email the current Chair, Colin Grimston ( for an informal chat and include a contact phone number and an idea of when best he can call you.

Asenby Parish Council Meeting
The next meeting of Asenby Parish Council will be held in Topcliffe & Asenby Village Hall at 7pm on Wednesday 20 March.

Asenby Community Park
A group of volunteers led by Catherine and Matilda Catterick have been very busy working with parish councillors on a plan to develop the Community Park at the end of Jamesville Way. Taking account of suggestions submitted during a consultation late last year, they have now presented the above imaginative plan to give the park a new and positive future. And, the Parish Council has secured funds for the trees and shrubs needed to make it an attractive and welcoming place for the whole community.

Now more help is being sought to undertake the planting and other tasks:

  • Thursday 14 to Sunday 17 March: Volunteers needed to help plant trees and shrubs.
  • Tuesday 19, and Saturday 23: Further planting planned if the work isn’t completed on earlier days.

Currently there are several volunteers for tree planting on Saturday 16 March and no confirmed volunteers for any other dates. It is imperative that the trees are planted within a few days of collection from the nursery otherwise there is a chance that they will die. If you can give a little time on any dates then please get in touch. info or 07810 301 811.

Voters need photo ID
If you are intending to vote in May’s election for a North Yorkshire mayor you will need to be able to show photo ID to the polling clerks. A passport, driving licence or bus pass is acceptable. If you don’t have one of these accepted photo IDs, you can apply for a free voter ID document, which is known as a Voter Authority Certificate. You can do this online at or by getting in touch with the Electoral Services Office at North Yorkshire Council at or by visiting the council’s office in Northallerton. You will need a recent digital photograph and your National Insurance number.

The deadline to apply for free voter ID for the election on Thursday 2 May is 5pm on Wednesday 24 April.

Eleven year old child steals caravan
There was a big surprise for traffic police last Friday afternoon when they stopped a BMW X5 towing a caravan which was being driven dangerously on the M1 nearer Garforth. It turned out that the driver was an 11-year old boy!

The caravan had been stolen from a holiday site near Thirsk and police were able to track the BMW, that was also using cloned registration plates travelling south towards Leeds. Just 45 minutes after the caravan was reported stolen, police stopped the vehicle on the M1 and a search of the car revealed equipment typically used by suspects to carry out thefts and a selection of vehicle registration plates.

The boy was arrested on suspicion of a number of offences including theft, burglary, going equipped for theft, and motoring offences including dangerous driving.

Motorhome and caravan thefts
The above news about the theft of the caravan from a site near Thirsk, makes this item very timely. North Yorkshire Police are reporting an increased number of stolen or attempted thefts of motorhomes and caravans across the county in recent weeks. Investigations are well underway, but in the meantime, they’re asking all owners to take extra safety precautions:

  • Install CCTV in the place you park your motorhome and consider fitting cameras inside the vehicle. Lock access to your garden, driveway or garage and invest in a removable driveway/parking post too.
  • Fit a good alarm/immobiliser and a tracking device. Use steering wheel and pedal locks.
  • Keep all keys locked away safely in your home, well away from doors and windows.
  • Security mark your vehicle/caravan and any expensive property inside. The local Neighbourhood Policing Team can help with this. Call them on 101.
  • Take some good quality photos of your vehicle/caravan and keep them safe. The police could use these to identify your vehicle if it were to be stolen and recovered.
  • Report any suspicious activity around your vehicle/caravan to the police, so they can take action straight away.
Asenby Allotments
Asenby residents who want to get back in touch with the land and grow their own fruit, vegetables and flowers are being invited to take one of several allotments now available. Each allotment is 9 x 27m and is for rent at £9 for the year. For more information contact Fred Gifford on 01845 578300 or 07751 167893.
Pet Poison Prevention
March is pet poison prevention awareness month and local vets are reminding pet owners of the dangers that many common household items can cause. The fact is that many everyday household items are safe for people to use…but are toxic to pets.

The campaign aims to warn and inform owners so that they can familiarise themselves with the dangers that are all around them. Attached here is a list of many of the poisons that pets may encounter (this is not an exhaustive list, but covers the most common poisons).

If your pet ingests anything poisonous, the advice is to contact your vet immediately – not to wait for signs of poisoning to appear.

Garden Waste Collection Service
Licences for the fortnightly garden waste collection service by North Yorkshire Council are now on sale. It now costs £46.50 for collections between March and early December. Customers whose previous licence covered collections to March 2024 will pay a reduced fee of £42. A licence is for one 240-litre wheelie bin, though more than one licence can be purchased.

Collections can start as early as 6am on your collection day, so your bin should be at the kerbside or designated collection point, with the licence clearly visible, from the night before.

You can find out more about the service or check your garden waste collection day on the council’s website at

Bird of Prey Volunteers wanted
The Bird of Prey Centre at Thorp Perrow is looking to build a reliable, passionate team of volunteers to help share their love for wildlife and conservation. Volunteers support the permanent falconers with the daily running of the centre. Jobs include:

  • Helping with basic bird of prey and animal husbandry, work such as cleaning aviaries, bays and water bowls. Plus, many other tasks that are around and about the birds but not always with them.
  • There are aspects of volunteering which are directly involved with the birds, especially alongside the flying team.
  • The majority of the work is done outside, in all weathers. Previous experience isn’t necessary, but not being afraid of hard work and being a good team player is essential.

If this sounds of interest, please email – falcons.thorp

Dave finds a storage place for his Harley
In last week’s copy of The Tattler an appeal was made on Topcliffe Mill resident David Black’s behalf seeking undercover storage for his Harley Davidson motorcycle. Dave lives in an apartment had has nowhere to keep his pride and joy. Well the good news is that Dave was contacted by a villager who has been able to help.
Chip ‘n Dales
The Chip ‘n Dales fish and chip van is in Topcliffe every Friday 5 ’til 7pm.
Thorp Perrow

  • Collaging Workshop with celebrated environmental artist James Owen Thomas – Wednesday 13 March – 10am to 1pm.
  • Easter Wreath Workshop – Wednesday 20 March – 10am to 3pm.
  • Classic Car Sundays – 12 May and Sunday 9 June – 10am – 2pm. Take your classic vehicle to the gardens for easy Sunday morning coffee, bacon sandwich and car chat.
  • Vintage Vehicle & Classic Car Show – Sunday May 2024 -10am – 4pm

More information and bookings:

Topcliffe Academy – dates for your diary

  • Thursday, 14 March – FOTS Disco, 5.30 – 7pm
  • Wednesday, 20 March – Easter Service at St Columba’s Church, 2pm
  • Friday, 22 March – Topcliffe’s Got Talent, 12.45pm
  • Friday, 22 March – School closes for Easter holidays, 2pm
  • Monday, 8 April – Staff Training Day
  • Tuesday, 9 April – School re-opens for start of Summer Term.
The RItz Cinema, Thirsk.

  • Argylle – to Thursday 14 March – matinee on Wednesday 13 March.
  • The Iron Claw – Friday 15 to Thursday 21 March – matinee Wednesday 20 March.
  • Bob Marley: One Love – Friday 22 to Thursday 28 March – matinee on Wednesday 27 March.
  • Migration – Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 March – matinees only.
  • Wicked Little Letters – Friday 29 March to Thursday 4 April – matinee on Wednesday 3 April.
  • Dune: Part Two – Friday 5 to Thursday 11 April – matinee on Wednesday 10 April.

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

Rural Arts events

Here are some of the workshops coming up at The Courthouse in Thirsk:

  • Enamelling a Unique Item – Wednesday 13 March.
  • Creating a Copper Wire Hare – Tuesday 19 March.
  • Traditional Sign Painting – Wednesday 20 March.
  • iCan – Get to Know Your IPad – Saturday 23 March.
  • Experimental Textiles – Saturday 23 March.
  • How to Paint Botanical Watercolours -Monday 25 March.
  • James and The Giant Peach Paperwork – Tuesday 26 March.
  • Ceramic Tortoises – Wednesday 27 March.
  • Matilda’s Watercolour Paintings – Thursday 28 March.
  • Penguins from Everyday Junk – Thursday 28 March.
  • Experimental Print – Friday 29 March.

Visit Rural Arts’ 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.

Creative Club meetings at Thirsk Library
Chris Geeson Creative Clubs are now a regular Saturday feature at Thirsk Community Library. The club sessions are on from 10 until 11.30am and are suitable for 6 to 13 year olds, though parents and younger members of the family can attend as well. Places are limited, so early booking is advised.

  • Saturday 16 March – History-inspired Crafts
  • Saturday 30 March – Junk Robots

Look out for extra club events in the half-term and Easter holidays. To book call 01609 534589 or email See poster about current club activities here.

Northallerton Male Voice Choir in Topcliffe
The Northallerton Male Voice Choir will be performing in St Columba’s Church on Saturday 16 March. The choir will give a wide and varied evening of traditional and modern songs. The concert starts at 7pm (doors open from 6pm). Tickets are £10 to include a glass of wine or soft drink and light refreshments after the concert. Children £5. All proceeds will go to the fund set up to maintain the fabric of the church building. Tickets available from John Phillips on 01845 577034 or 07831 188819. See poster here.
The Thirsk 10 Mile Race
The annual Thirsk & Sowerby Harriers 10-mile road race takes place starting from Thirsk Racecourse at 10am on Sunday 17 March. It’s a fast, flat course. Voucher prizes to first male and female finishers. Goody bag for all finishers. Part of Yorkshire Veterans Athletic Association’s Championship. There’ll also be a 1.5 mile fun run starting at 9am and a wheelchair race starting at 9.50am. More details from –
Thirsk Artisan Market
Taking place on the Market Place in Thirsk on Sunday 17 March between 9am and 2pm. Locally-produced arts and crafts, food and drink. A diverse, quality, shopping experience that celebrates independent producers and makers.
Crime Prevention Webinars
The Neighbourhood Watch Network is organising a series of Crime Prevention Webinars during week commencing 18 March.

  • Monday 18 March – Taking your home security to the next level (burglary trends and technology).
  • Tuesday 19 March – Anti-social behaviour & Heritage crime – not just an issue for rural communities.
  • Wednesday 20 – Top tips from policing’s tactical lead for vehicle crime.
  • Thursday 21 March – Understanding the role of isolation & loneliness in scams.
  • Friday 22 March – Stalking and female personal safety.

The webinars will be held online via Zoom and will be from 4.30pm – 5.30pm. To book a place on any of the webinars go to There is a limited amount of space and so book early to ensure you don’t miss out.

Topcliffe & Asenby Village Hall Committee
The next meeting of the Village Hall Committee will be at 7.30pm on Tuesday 19 March at the village hall.
Warm Hub lunch
The next Warm Hub lunch will be held at the Village Hall on Wednesday 20 March from 11.30 to 12.45pm. The volunteers will be serving a full roast dinner on this day. There’ll also be a selection of delicious cakes and bakes and tea or coffee. All welcome. No set charge, but donations welcome.

From Wednesday 3 April, and throughout the summer months, the Warm Hub reverts to serving soup, sandwiches, sweets, cakes and drinks.

Last week’s lunch saw 49 meals served, including some home deliveries. A total of £141was raised of which £50 has been presented to Morndyke Parrot Sanctuary in Thirsk. The balance, after rent, was added to the Warm Hub Community Fund.

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

  • Thursday 21 March, 10.30am to 2.30pm – Learn to draw and sketch with more confidence.
  • Thursday 11 April, 10.30am to 1.30pm – Paint Beautiful Blooms in Acrylics.

Plus this special class at the Himalayan Gardens at Grewelthorpe: Friday 17 May, 10am- 4pm – ‘Paint a Garden Landscape in Oils’. Book online at

Base Camp for kids
Kids can kick start the Easter holidays with some springtime adventures including archery, campfire cooking, nature trails walking, woodwork, crafts and woodland games in the 90 acres of private parkland at Base Camp, Baldersby Park. Camp activities are supervised by qualified and experienced staff. Wednesday 27 and Thursday 28 March, 10am to – 3pm, £30 per child. For more details see poster here and to book online, go to
The Angel Comedy Night
The next Hilarity Bites Comedy Night at The Angel in Topcliffe will be held on Thursday 28 March. Doors open 7.30pm and the show begins at 8pm. Tickets £10 if purchased in advance or £12 on the door. For more information see poster here or call 01845 578000.
Easter canal cruises
The ‘Pride of Ripon’ is offering cruises on the scenic Ripon canal this Easter. They’ll run from Friday 29 March to Saturday 6 April from 10.20am every half hour. There’ll be bunnies galore and a quiz for everyone to complete, with a prize worth up to £8 for every child under 14 years of age. Cruises start at Ripon Canal Basin – HG4 1AQ. If you have any queries about accessibility, timings or other issues call 01765 609777 or email
Easter Party
The Thirsk Royal British Legion Club in Kirkgate is holding an Easter party on Sunday 31 March between 3 and 5pm. This annual event will see a visit from the Easter Bunny and there’ll be an outside company providing a children’s disco and entertainment. Free entry and Easter egg for every child. Come rain or shine, it’s party time!
Topcliffe Parish Council
The next meeting of Topcliffe Parish Council will be at 7pm on Thursday 4 April in the village hall.
Iconic street food at Catton Kitchen
The very popular caterers Squid & Tonic will be serving their iconic street food at The Catton Kitchen on Saturday 18 May between 4 and 8pm. See poster here. In this unusual collaboration The Catton Kitchen will supply many of the home-grown food ingredients and Squid & Tonic will cook and present it as part of an amazing menu. Entrance to the event is free: just pay for what you eat and drink. Booking required in advance. Email: or call 07747 083155.
Traders in Topcliffe, Asenby and surrounding area
A list of traders and businesses in Topcliffe and Asenby is shown here. If your business is missing from the list or any information needs updating, please contact Doug Allan.
Bin Collections
You can easily check bin collection information via North Yorkshire Council’s website at

Garden waste licences for 2024 are now on sale from North Yorkshire Council. Purchase your licence online –

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.