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Sunday Email: Issue 67

Welcome to the 67th issue of this regular Sunday Email.


07785 223707

The week’s Covid statistics

• The R number is now between 1.2 and 1.4. This means that on average every 10 people infected will infect between 12 and 14 other people.

• 46.2 million first doses given. 35.7 million second doses. 87.8% of the adult population has now had the first jab and over 67.8% the second.

• 300,302 people tested positive for Covid in the last week. That is an increase of 40% on the week before.

• More than 51,870 new Covid cases were recorded in the UK on Friday, the highest figure in more than six months.

• 3,964 people were admitted to hospital with Covid between 6 and 13 July. England’s chief medical officer warned that Covid hospitalisations were doubling every three weeks and could hit "scary numbers" in future.

• There were 41 deaths reported yesterday and 284 in the last seven days. The total number of UK deaths within 28 days of a positive Covid test now stands at 128,683 Separate figures published by the Office for National Statistics show there have been nearly 154,000 deaths registered in the UK where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate. Worldwide, the global death toll is 4,095,913.

North Yorkshire figures

The number of Covid cases in our county is rising. North Yorkshire’s average is 355 per 100,000 people, a little above the England average of 345. More than 300 new cases are being reported in the county each day, the highest rate since 12 January. More than 80 Covid patients are in the main hospitals that serve the county, compared with 400-plus in January, but that number doubled in a five-day period.

Changes to restrictions starting tomorrow

The following relaxations to restrictions will come into force tomorrow:

• Social distancing – No limits on how many people can meet, 1m-plus rule removed (except in some places like hospitals).

• Face coverings are no longer required by law, but people are encouraged to take sensible precautions and wear masks in busy or enclosed spaces.

• Nightclubs can reopen, the table service only rule in pubs and restaurants ends, there’s no limit on guest numbers at weddings and funerals or on people attending. concerts, theatres or sports events. There are no restrictions on communal worship.

• Guidance on working from home will end, though it’s hoped employees will phase the return to their workplace.

• Limits on visitors to care homes will be removed.

• Guidance recommending against travel to amber countries will be removed.

• Adults fully vaccinated in the UK and children under eighteen, will no longer have to quarantine for 10 days after returning from amber-list countries. Last Friday however, it was announced that those returning from France will still have to isolate on their return.

• It will remain a legal requirement to self-isolate if you test positive for Covid.

From 16 August:

• Those who are double-jabbed will not have to self-isolate if a close contact tests positive for Covid.

September: A review will take place to assess how prepared the country is for autumn and winter.

To mask or not to mask

The legal requirement to wear a face covering in shops, public transport and other enclosed public spaces will end tomorrow. It will be replaced with government guidance that recommends that face coverings are worn in crowded and enclosed spaces. Interestingly, England’s chief medical officer Chris Whitty and chief scientific adviser

Sir Patrick Vallance say they will continue to wear face coverings in any crowded indoor setting, when asked to wear a mask by any competent authority or as a common courtesy if someone else is uncomfortable. Businesses and shops need to do all they can to protect their staff, as well as customers and that’s why most will be continuing to ask customers to wear a mask. They don’t want to have to close because staff are self-isolating, so wearing a facemask not only protects you, it protects other people and supports local business.

Likewise with social distancing, some people may not feel very confident as restrictions are lifted, so giving them space is important.

Covid symptoms change in those fully vaccinated

Those who have had two jabs have always known that being fully vaccinated is no guarantee against being infected by Covid…but that it would likely be less serious and not require hospitalisation. Now the Covid Symptoms Study led by Kings College, London is signalling that fully vaccinated people who are infected suffer different symptoms to those we generally think of. Their data shows that symptoms are milder and similar to those of a heavy cold – headache, runny nose, sneezing, sore throat and loss of smell. It seems that some people just think they have a bad cold but can actually be carrying and spreading Covid! So, the experts are advising that we all recognise cold-like symptoms as possible Covid and get tested to prevent further spreads and increases in rates.

Test and Trace

Full details about the purpose of Test & Trace and how it works can be read at

Covid Testing

Passport to international travel

The government has agreed new rules that allow people to travel to amber-list destinations as mentioned above. However, travellers will still be expected to have a pre-departure test before flying home from an amber list country and pay for a PCR test on or before day two of their arrival home. The NHS Covid Pass, but not the appointment or vaccination card, can be used as proof of Covid-19 status when travelling abroad. However, certificates can be requested to prove you have had both doses of the jab. These can be ordered online from The certificate can be used on travels abroad, or at any event where you need proof you’ve had your vaccines.

The Topcliffe & Asenby Produce Show

The 2021 Produce Show will be held on Saturday 28 August. The event is open to all residents of Topcliffe and Asenby, and individuals who grow produce on allotments within the boundaries of our two villages. There’ll be 47 horticultural classes, so there’s lots of opportunity to grow some winners! There’s also 16 baking/preserves classes, 3 floral classes, 10 hobbies classes and 5 classes just for children to enter. Don’t forget that the Show Committee agreed a new rule last year, namely that only one entry can be placed in each category. Other to that the rules remain unchanged. As in previous years there’ll be two trophies in the horticultural section, one for the person with the most points overall and another for the person with most ‘firsts’. There’ll also be trophies for the winners in the other sections. The full list of rules, categories and classes is available on both village websites – and or from Produce Show Secretary Judith Lowe (577911).

Walks around Thirsk

As the summer holidays approach many mums and dads will be looking out for things to do to keep youngsters busy and active. Short walks might be just the job, but short walks with a bit of local history could be a real winner Thirsk Tourist Information has put together a few walk suggestions you might like to try:

Past & Present – this pleasant walk around Thirsk and Sowerby via town and countryside trails takes about two hours. It visits 15 interpretation boards that tell the story of the town and surrounding area. There is a free app and a 50p booklet and map, also downloadable from

Blue Plaque Trail: This is a walk around 20 historical sites in Thirsk and Sowerby marked by blue plaques. These record important buildings or people associated with the towns. The walk takes about 1½ hours and details are in a 50p booklet, or downloadable from

Ted’s Walks: one of the centre’s regular volunteers, Ted, has written five walks’ booklets

– 4 mile circular field walk from Thirsk via South Kilvington.

– 4 mile circular flat field walk to the west of Thirsk and back through Sowerby.

– 3 mile village and field walk – Sowerby, with Pudding Pie Hill.

– 6.5 miles circular field walk north of Carlton Miniott & Thirsk

– 1.5 mile circular walk around Thirsk centre suitable for pushchairs and most wheelchairs.

These walks are in individual booklets available from the information office at 60p each, or downloadable from

Soup and sweet lunch

The next soup and sweet lunch will be held on Wednesday 21 July at 12 noon. Instead of paying a set price for lunch, customers are asked to make a small donation according to their means. Any surplus is donated to a different charity each week.

Sunday afternoon tea

Karen Morley and Linda Carver are organising an afternoon tea on Sunday 1 August. It will be at the village hall – either inside or outside depending on the weather – between 3 and 5pm. Those so inclined are welcome to bring along their own bottle of wine or fizz! And if anyone would prefer to just pop in to collect their afternoon tea and take it away to consume elsewhere, that’s ok. Instead of paying a set price, those attending will be invited to leave a donation. Any surplus will be donated to the Yorkshire Air Ambulance.

Help needed: it would be much appreciated if villagers would help by making cakes, scones, quiches, biscuits or sandwiches. Just bring them along on the day between 1 and 2pm so that there is time for them to be set out.

Classic cars and motorcycles on show

Up to 400 of the very best classic vehicles will be on show at Stokesley Showground (TS9 5ER) on Saturday, 7 August, and it should make for a great family day out. There will be a dedicated motorcycle arena with the Yorkshire Coast British Motorcycle Club planning to bring over a dozen bikes. Also going on show in the arena is a rare 1967

British Velocette Thruxton one of only 441 ever made. Showtime is 10.30am to 4pm.

SummerTime Fest

The Staveley Arms at North Stainley is holding a summer festival on Saturday 21 August. The programme stars The Dunwells and also features Lucy May-Walker, Megan O’Neill, the Solow Choir and Freddie Cleary. For more details check out the pub’s Facebook page or email info


The second concert in the current series will be held on Saturday 24 July at 11am when local harpist Mary Reid returns to Baldersby St James to present an informal ‘coffee concert’. She will perform pieces from composers such as Bach, Paganini and Salzedo. There is no charge for admission to this concert but donations are very welcome.

The third and final concert is on 2 September at 7pm when the Genovia Bassoon Quartet will provide a whirlwind musical tour which will showcase items from various musical genres and will demonstrate the amazing versatility of the bassoon. Each member of the quartet is a top orchestral player. If you want more information contact Sue Brown at the shop in Baldersby – 07840 381558 or Colin Reid on 01765 640624.

Northern Dales Farmers’ Market

The next farmers’ market will be held in Thirsk Market Place on Sunday 1 August between 9am and 2pm. There’ll be a fantastic selection of food and drink producers selling a wide range of goodies including fresh baked bread, gourmet pies, scotch eggs, cheeses, Indian meals, shortbread, cookies, luxury cheesecakes, raw Yorkshire honey, fruit-packed preserves and chutneys, authentic Korean stir fries, pickles, curry sauces and even homemade doggie treats.

Yorkshire Day

Sunday, 1 August, is Yorkshire Day which promotes the cultural and historical roots of Yorkshire County. This year York will be host to the Yorkshire Society and the official Yorkshire Day Civic Celebration. Yorkshire Day has enjoyed an increasing popularity and significance since it was first established in 1975. The decision to enhance the day and mark it with a formal civic gathering of Mayors, Lord Mayors, their attendants and other dignitaries ‘in full costume and regalia’ was taken in 1985. Every year since, The Yorkshire Society has awarded a town or city council the privilege of organising this official civic celebration, to formally mark the day and provide a worthy centrepiece for the thousands of public and private events that now take place.

Events on at The Forum

There are some great events coming to The Forum in Northallerton in the coming months, including:

• Big Band Era – Sunday 1 August at 12 noon. A treat for jazz fans. The fabulous sounds of the big band era are recreated by Alan Owens and The Forum Big Band. The bar will be open.

• Children’s Summer Disco – Saturday 7 August at 6pm. A chance for children aged 2 to 11 to put on their dancing shoes and have some fun. With Darren Kirk from Freedom Discos, Sound and Lighting.

• ‘Woman Like Me’ – The Little Mix Show. Friday 20 August at 7pm. The energetic show that follows in the footsteps of the award-winning girl band, Little Mix. This iconic 5-star rated show has live vocals and is full of commercial pop-video choreography. Suitable for kids, tweens, teens and adults alike, The Little Mix Show brings the full pop concert experience to you. There are lots of added extras including dance competitions, free giveaways and a ‘meet & greet’ with the girls after the show!

• Andre Rieu – Tuesday 24 August at . The King of Waltz handpicks his all-time favourite tunes and presents them on the big screen.

Francis Rossi. Thursday 26 August at 7.30pm. The legendary Status Quo lead singer will share the extraordinary secrets of his 50-plus years in rock’n’roll when he takes to the stage for an intimate evening of chat and music.

• The Unravelling Wilburys. Saturday 28 August at 7.30pm. A band of good ‘ol boys, turn their skills and replicate the sound and songs of the late 80s super-group The Traveling Wilburys were five of the greatest names in rock music history who came together…George Harrison, Roy Orbison, Tom Petty, Bob Dylan and Jeff Lynne of ELO.

The Quo Experience. Friday 3 September at 7.30pm. An excellent show that captures the essence of the real Stutus Quo. ‘Rockin’ All Over The World’, ‘Whatever You Want’, ‘Down Down’, ‘Living On An Island’, ‘In The Army Now’, ‘What You’re Proposing’ and ‘Burning Bridges’ are just a few of the many hits from the group’s incredible music history that will be sung.

Enquiries to 01609 776230. Book tickets online

National Trust properties

The Trust is lifting social distancing rules and other Covid restrictions at most properties from tomorrow. The booking system, which has been an important part of managing its social distancing arrangements during the pandemic, is ending.

Parish Council meetings

• The next meeting of Asenby Parish Council will be at 7.30pm on Wednesday 21 July 2021 in the main hall at the Village Hall.

• The next meeting of Topcliffe Parish Council will be at 7.15pm on Thursday 5 August in the main hall at the Village Hall. topcliffeparishcouncil

Covid safety arrangements are in place at the Village Hall for all meetings and activities.

St Columba’s Church

Services planned are:

• Sunday 18 July, 10.45am – Sung Matins.

• Sunday 25 July, 10.45am – Holy Communion.

Topcliffe & Asenby Village Hall

• Art classes – Monday mornings 9.30 to 11.30am.

• Pammy’s Pilates – 6 to 7pm, every Thursday evening.

• My Time Yoga – 12.30 to 4pm (two classes) – every Monday.

• Boot Camp – every Tuesday and Friday evening, 7 – 8pm.

• DON’T MISS! Soup and sweet lunch – 12 noon Wednesday 21 July.

• Asenby Parish Council meeting – 7.30pm, Wednesday 21 July.

• NEW! David Marshall – Jewellery valuation and selling opportunity – Friday 23 and Saturday 24 July – 10.30am to 2.30pm each day.

• Topcliffe & Asenby Village Hall Committee – 7pm, Thursday 29 July.

• COMING SOON! Sunday Afternoon Tea Party, 3 – 5pm, 1 August.

• NEW! Boccia Club is planning to start again on Tuesday 3 August. 2 – 4pm. All welcome.

• Topcliffe Parish Council meeting – 7pm, Thursday 5 August.

• Topcliffe & Asenby Produce Show will be held on Saturday 28 August.

• Attic Auction – Saturday 4 September.

• NEW! Indoor Carpet Bowls – if there is enough interest, the bowls club will start to meet again in September. Expressions of interest please to Mel Arkley 01845 578728.

In line with the government’s relaxation of restrictions, the Village Hall Committee has decided that it wishes the village hall to get back to normal operation as quickly as possible whilst maintaining some of the safety precautions introduced back in May. The aim is to strike a balance to reopen the facility whilst maintaining personal safety. It is recognised that some members of the public want to get back to some level of normality as soon as possible whilst others will still feel uneasy or nervous if arrangements are relaxed too quickly. The hall is again available for any type of booking in the normal way, there is no capacity or special limits, social distancing is voluntary, kitchen and catering services can operate as normal, and there is no need for one-way systems within the hall. However, NHS Test and Trace will continue. Hirers and users will be asked to take responsibility for the way they operate. The new guidelines are available on the village website –

Existing hirers of the hall will have free use until 31 December 2021. To encourage a new range of activities to get going, free use of the hall is also available to new group activities (this does not include commercial one-off or private hires for parties and social functions). Bookings for new activities and for events such as parties are now possible. Events planned for last year that had to be postponed due to the pandemic will be rescheduled in due course. Watch out for details of the Big Race Night and Challenge Quiz.

Local traders

The Angel at Topcliffe – Check out full details at or follow The Angel on Facebook to get regular updates.

Asenbee Honey – this Asenby-based business sells honey but also makes beeswax candles and a range of hand-carved spoons and oak chopping boards.

John Aston Flooring Ltd – operating from The Old Hatchery in Asenby. There’s a large selection of carpets and flooring to suit all tastes. Appointment only. 01845 421111 – info

Chip ‘n Dales – the Fish & Chip van is in Topcliffe on Fridays between 5 and 7pm.

The Elm Gallery – Opening times are Wednesday to Saturday, 10am to 5.30pm; Sunday, 12noon to 5.30pm; Monday and Tuesday – closed. Covid safety arrangements are in place with two households/bubbles in the gallery at any one time. Call 01845 577316 or 07709 223920 or check out the website at:

Fotiá Candles – Nikki and Sam Key’s home-based business producing hand poured soy wax candles, wax melts and reed diffusers. Perfect gift ideas. Bespoke orders for special occasions such as wedding favours. Info

The Little Yorkshire Hamper Company – currently based at the Milk Churn farm Shop but due to lack of space is planning to relocate to Melmerby soon. The company provides beautiful hampers for all occasions. Hampers contain the best of produce from small Yorkshire food and drink producers. Telephone: 07793 775987.

The Milk Churn Farm Shop & Cafe – From Monday 19 July customers will be asked to continue to wear a mask/face covering (unless of course exempt) and also to maintain social distancing. This is out of respect for staff and more vulnerable customers. At both doors, there will be hand sanitiser provided. Opening hours: Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 9am – 5pm; Thursday 9am – 1pm; Saturday 9am – 4pm and Sunday 10am – 3pm. Closed on Mondays. Takeaway teas and coffees with cake is still available. Wheelchair access is available at the rear of the property. Check out Facebook page for information about new lines in fresh and frozen foods. 01845 400446.

Studio 18 Hairstylist – unisex hairdressing salon run by Nicola James at 18 Long Street (opposite the surgery). Open Monday to Saturday. Male and female adults as well as children. For an appointment call Nicola on 07851 034815.

The Swan – Providing traditional home-cooked food with a new menu and ‘specials board’. Extra choices on Wednesday Pie Night. Take-away meals every day. Sunday lunch served 12 noon to 4pm. On Saturdays food is served 12 noon until 8.30pm and the bar stays open until late.

The Thirsk Food Bank now has a collection point at the Milk Churn Farm Shop. The following foodstuffs are welcomed: tins, pasta, rice, biscuits, cereals, jars, crisps, juices, bottled products, soups, crisp breads, anything in packets. But please, no fresh products as there’s a risk they will go to waste.

Topcliffe Post Office – opening hours are: Shop – weekdays 7am to 5pm and Saturday 7 to 11.30am. Post Office – weekdays 8.30am to 5pm and Saturday 8.30 to 11.30am. Closed on Sundays.

Bin Collections

Hambleton (Topcliffe):

• Refuse – Mondays 19 July and 2 August

• Recycling & green waste – Thursdays 29 July and 12 August.

Harrogate (Asenby):

• Recycling – Mondays 19 July and 2 August

• Refuse – Monday 26 July and 9 August

• Garden waste – Thursday 29 July and 12 August.

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