Posted on

Sunday Email: Issue 96

Welcome to the 96th issue of the Sunday Email.
07785 223707
Queen’s Platinum Jubilee
Last Sunday around twenty residents gathered at The Angel for a discussion about how the two villages – Topcliffe and Asenby – might celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee between 2 and 5 June. There was a lively debate with lots of ideas thrown in the mix and over the next few weeks it’s hoped that a programme can be agreed and volunteers will take the lead on getting things organised.

Here’s what we know for sure:

  • Both Topcliffe and Asenby Parish Councils have indicated they will support the celebrations.
  • The two villages will have specific events for their residents, with communal events for residents of both villages staged in Topcliffe.
  • The Village Hall Committee has agreed to offer free use of the Village Hall for community events linked to the celebrations.
  • St Columba’s Church will organise a range of jubilee services that complement the community celebrations.
  • Hambleton Council will supply a Lime tree for planting in Topcliffe, possibly on the triangle of grass outside the school. A commemorative plaque will be added and maybe a time capsule will be buried.

Plenty of ideas were proposed for the celebration, and more have been added subsequently, including:
– 11 March – Formal tree planting (this is the 70th day of the 70th year of the Queen’s reign, and coincides with the right time to plant trees!). Plaque and time capsule.
– 30 April to 2 May – Scarecrow competition with a royal theme – to coincide with a similar event in Carlton Miniott.
– May – Village tidy-ups and litter picks (dates to be agreed).
– Persuade the county council to repair Topcliffe Bridge – which was damaged several years ago and is now an eyesore.
Thursday 2 June
– Lighting of village beacons – to remain on for duration of celebrations, or lit daily.
– Street and house decoration – throughout weekend celebrations
Friday 3 June
– Evening Meal and Disco in the Village Hall – bring your own drinks.
Saturday 4 June
– Party in the Park on the playing field. Bring your own picnic and drinks. Possibly with a band and dancing, games, races etc.
– Children’s crown-making competition
– Children’s Jubilee art competition
– Jubilee Photographic competition
– Fancy royal dress competition
– Vehicle display – any vehicles 70 years of age and over
– Flat Green bowling knock out competition – teams of four (including children accompanied by adults)
Some of these events could be staged at different locations and on any day during the weekend.
Sunday 5 June
– Jubilee walk – a short stroll between Topcliffe and Asenby and back for families and people of all ages.
– Sunday Brunch in the Village Hall.
– Church service.

Larger-scale and longer-term opportunities;
– Improvements to Jubilee Gardens
– Creation of a Platinum Jubilee Walkway on the trail between Topcliffe Bridge and Asenby, with new path surfaces, more benches, picnic benches at the bridge end grassy area, waste bins, more tree planting and signage.
– Tree planting to improve the nation’s tree canopy.

So, lots of ideas to make the celebrations a fun time and some great opportunities for long-term improvements. Now all is needed is the will-power to make these ideas a reality. Each specific event will need a leader and volunteers to get the activity organised. Please look through the list and consider how you might help. The plain fact is that these exciting proposals will only happen if residents are prepared to make them happen.

There’s still time to express your views on the Top Residents’ Facebook page and you could also consider attending the next public meeting at The Angel at 7.30pm on Sunday 6 March.

Asenby cleaned up
A big thank you to Asenby resident Marie Perason who has been on a personal crusade to tidy up her village. She collected loads of rubbish over a few days just whilst out walking her dog. Well done, Marie.
The Tattler – Spring 2022
Work has started on pulling together the next edition of The Tattler and it will be published on 8 March and delivered door to door within a few days of that date. If you have want to submit an article for consideration please get it to the Editor by Friday 18 February – (
Sleights Lane closed to traffic
Fell Bridge (over Mother Sike Drain), Sleights Lane, Rainton is closed until further notice. North Yorkshire County Council has advised that the culvert running under the bridge is damaged and as such has made the bridge unsafe to cross as there is a risk of collapse. Once a further assessment and a repair programme has been agreed another update will be provided by the county council, but at this time there is no timescale available to when the bridge will reopen. Road diversions are in place.

Mr Keith Pettitt, Clerk to Rainton with Newby Parish Council – raintonclerk

Shop Update
At the Post Office, training is underway for UPS courier transactions, and once all the necessary equipment arrives the shop will be up and running – that’ll be much sooner than the six week plan originally mentioned. DHL training will also start soon and final confirmation from Johnsons the Cleaners is imminent.
Debbie and her team have noticed that there are very few customers on Saturdays between seven and 7.30 am, so from now on the Post Office will open at 7.30am and close at 12.30pm (though the Post Office counter will close at 12 noon). This will also save on expensive energy costs.
Anyone who has visited the Post Office recently will have seen the changes in the shop and particularly noticed the expanse of flooring which has been made available since all food products were taken over to the farm shop. Delivery of new rustic centre shelving is awaited, but this could take four or five weeks, giving the team time to get new flooring down before it arrives.

Early Closing this Friday
The Post Office will close at 1pm this coming Friday as Debbie will be attending the funeral of a close friend who she worked with as a paramedic. Unfortunately, Helen and Paul are on holiday and so there is no cover available. Debbie says she is very sorry for the inconvenience this will cause.

Milk Churn Farm Shop
All food products have now been moved over from the Post Office to the farm shop and the new shelving for these items and some new lines will be installed for Tuesday’s opening. Only the dog and cat products now need transferring and that will happen quite soon.
Customers have been enquiring about the farm shop opening on a Monday and Debbie would like nothing better than to do this, but only if there is a considerable increase in footfall. There are considerable costs involved – staffing, gas and electricity – and at the moment opening that extra day simply can’t be justified, but the matter will be kept under review.

Next soup and sweet lunch
The next soup and sweet lunch at the Village Hall will be held on Wednesday, 16 February at 12 noon. The cash raised will be donated to the Heriott Hospice in Thirsk.
Services at St Columba’s

  • TODAY – Sunday, 13 February at 10.45am – Holy Communion.
  • Sunday, 20 February at 10.45am – Choral Matins.
  • Sunday, 27 February at 10.45am – Holy Communion.
Bags2school recycling collection day
The next Bags2school textile recycling event at the Village Hall will be on Thursday 28 April. Please save all recyclable articles for the big collection day.
Crematorium Visit
A community open day is set to be held at the new multi-million-pound Hambleton Crematorium. The local community will be welcome to look around the new facility between 11am and 3pm on Thursday 24 February. The 22-acre site named Maple Park, is located between Busby Stoop and Skipton on Swale. The building includes a service hall which will accommodate approximately 120 mourners. There is also an entrance foyer, waiting lobby, offices and a family room. As well as this, the single storey facility includes a wake facility and café with beautiful views out over the Hambleton hills. The site also offers a memorial garden, meadows and a wooded area making it a calm and peaceful place for reflection or for scattering ashes.

In order to minimise the number of cars travelling from our two villages, if anyone who is interested gives me their name, I’ll keep a list and see if transport can be pooled. Email doug or call 07785 223707. I have the names of six people, including myself, on the list so far.

Rural Arts classes start soon
Just a quick reminder that the monthly Rural Arts classes start again at Topcliffe & Asenby Village Hall at 10.00am on Tuesday, 22 February. The subject at the first class will be painting and brusho. You can simply turn up on the day (it’s free to attend) or if you want more information call Judith Lowe on 577911.

Dates for future classes are: 22 March, 19 April, 17 May, 21 June and 19 July. .

Railway volunteers needed
Volunteers are needed on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway to assist with the full breadth of civil engineering, building, electrical and mechanical work. Other volunteer roles include travelling ticket inspectors, signaling and telecommunications, customer service, retail, catering, fundraising and education. You don’t need to be a train enthusiast or know all the lingo, and NYMR would love a whole cross section of people to apply. They’re particularly eager to recruit more female volunteers across every department. Get on board today – apply at
The Yorkshire Gardens’ Trust
The Trust is organising five online talks which can be purchased as a package of 5 for £20 or individually for £5 each. They are on Wednesdays at 6pm on Zoom, starting Wednesday 2 March. The speakers will introduce a variety of landscapes and gardens, both historic and contemporary, enjoyed by Yorkshire Gardens’ Trust members throughout Yorkshire and in neighbouring County Durham. To book go to
Events at The Angel

  • 12 to 14 February – Valentine Evenings – special menu for this special occasion.
  • Friday nights – 5 to 9pm – Land & Sea – steak or fish for two with a bottle of wine for £35.95
  • Sunday roast – 12noon to 8pm – traditional Sunday lunch.

Check the website at or call 01845 578000.

Tai chi classes for beginners
There’s a new Tai chi class for beginners being set up at Thirsk Leisure Centre. Perfect for mobility, balance and gentle exercise. Fridays 11am. For more information call David Allerton on 07557 965042.
Catton Kitchen winter opening hours

  • February – Closed – as the team are very busy getting everything seeded and prepped for spring!
  • March – Thursday 3 and Friday 4, 9am to 2pm; Saturday 5, 10am to 2pm; Sunday 6,10am to 2pm.

Opening times will be reviewed again in the spring.

Parish Council meetings

  • Topcliffe Parish Council – the February meeting has been cancelled, so the next meeting will be at 7pm on Thursday 3 March –
  • Asenby Parish Council will meet at 7.30pm on Wednesday 16 March –

Village Hall Committee meeting

  • The next meeting will be at 7.30pm on Tuesday 5 April.
  • The AGM and an Ordinary Meeting of the Committee will be held consecutively starting at 7.30pm on Tuesday 7 June.

Both parish councils and the Village Hall Committee meet at Topcliffe & Asenby Village Hall.

  • To Thursday 17 February – Save the Cinema – the story of Liz Evans who starts a campaign in the 90s to save the Lyric Cinema in Carmarthen.
  • Friday 18 to Thursday 24 February – Sing 2.
  • Friday 25 to Thursday 3 March – Belfast – a young boy and his working-class Belfast family experience the tumultuous late 1960s.
  • Friday 4 to Thursday 10 March – Nightmare Alley – an ambitious conman with a talent for manipulating people with a few well-chosen words hooks up with a female psychiatrist who is even more dangerous than he is.
  • Friday 11 to Thursday 17 March – Death on the Nile – while on vacation on the Nile, Hercule Poirot must investigate the murder of a young heiress.

Please keep checking the website for the latest details –

Rural Arts events at The Courthouse, Thirsk

  • Saturday 19 February at 7.30pm – The Dark Room – Full: £10, Concessions: £8. You, the audience, awake in The Dark Room. Which option do you pick? This strange, high-octane, choose-your-own adventure game is a comedy night, gameshow and pantomime all in one.
  • 22 – 24 February, 10.30am – 12 noon – Children’s half-term workshops – From £4.50. Run away to the circus for the morning, making your own miniature acts with paper, ceramics and more!
  • Friday 25 and Saturday 26 February, 10am-3pm – Print Sprint – From £12.50. Two days of live demonstrations and workshops inclusive of all abilities. Try out different techniques with our friendly and professional printmakers.
  • Wednesdays from 2 March, 6.30pm – 8pm – Life Drawing – £8 per session. Take part in brand-new fortnightly sessions to hone your observational drawing skills as part of a friendly, peer-led group.
  • Thursday 3 March at 7.30pm – Katie Spencer – Full: £10, Concessions: £8. Katie Spencer is a progressive folk singer-songwriter and guitarist from Yorkshire who writes songs imbued with the northern landscapes of her home. “Intensely captivating” – Folk Radio.
  • Thursday 10 March at 7pm – National Theatre – Live performance – Book of Dust – Full: £10, Concessions: £8. Philip Pullman’s prequel to the epic His Dark Materials trilogy. Two young people and their demons find themselves at the centre of a terrifying manhunt. In their care is a tiny child called Lyra, and in that child lies the fate of the future.

For more information and to book places, go to

Events on at The Forum

  • Monday 14 February at 7.15pm – Romeo and Juliet – the classic ballet live-streamed from the Royal Opera House. A Valentine’s Day treat.
  • Thursday 17 February at 7pm – The Book of Dust – La Belle Sauvage – live-streamed from the National Theatre.
  • Saturday 19 February at 7.30pm – Phoney Fools and Horses – the stage show.
  • Wednesday 23 February at 8pm – Ahir Shah – featuring his signature blend of philosophical inquiry, personal examination and sweet gags.
  • Friday 25 February at 6pm – Pop Divas Live – the UK’s number 1 Pop Tribute.

Enquiries 01609 776230. Tickets online at

Local traders
Most of these traders also have a Facebook page where you can check out latest information.

Bin Collections

Hambleton (Topcliffe):

  • Refuse – Mondays14 and 28 February.
  • Recycling – Thursdays 24 February. and 10 March
  • Garden waste – resume 24 February for those who have subscribed to 2021/22 service.
  • Subscriptions for 2022/23 are now open. The cost is £40. New and existing customers can now sign up at or call 01609 779977.

Harrogate (Asenby)

  • Recycling – Mondays 14 and 28 February.
  • Refuse – Mondays 21 February and 7 March.
  • Green Waste – Subscriptions for 2022/23 are now open and the cost is £41. Sign up at
Early end to Covid restrictions?
The possibility of all Covid restrictions, including the requirement to self-isolate following a positive test, ending a month earlier than planned has been raised by the Prime Minister. Covid restrictions had been due to expire on March 24, Boris Johnson told MPs he expects they can end a month sooner if the data continues to be encouraging. It means in less than two weeks time the country could be returned to levels of freedom enjoyed before the pandemic, for the first time since restrictions were brought in almost two years ago.
Covid travel requirements relaxed
Since last Friday, fully vaccinated people travelling to the UK no longer have to take any Covid tests – either before departure or on arrival. There’s no longer a need to quarantine at all – but you still need to fill in a passenger locator form.

The unvaccinated must have proof of a negative Covid test taken in the two days before travelling to the UK. Once in the country, they need to book and pay privately for a PCR test to be taken after they arrive (this needs to be booked before travelling). And they still have to fill in the passenger locator form but won’t need to isolate, as long as their Covid test is negative.

And with people able to travel abroad easier than at any time since the start of the pandemic, it is easy to lose track of the regulations. The BBC has compiled a handy list of some of the key things to know about when travelling to popular destinations –

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