Wolds Diary: Wonderful people in fantastic settings

The village of Stillingfleet
The village of Stillingfleet

My lodger has moved out this week to start his teaching career in the Midlands.

I’ve been able to help a bit with things he needed for his new home, such as some furniture, bedding and food and cooking things.

My car was due for its MOT so I took it up to the garage and it needed new brake shoes, new brake pipes and new brake discs.

I left it there and went back to the church in Pocklington where I was trying to sort out what we needed for our turn at St Crux at York on the Friday.

In a rash moment I volunteered to organise it last year and seem to have inherited the role.

It’s a wonderful opportunity for our church to raise much-needed funds by running this amazing facility by The Shambles in York for the day; providing refreshments and stalls there.

Having started on that, I got home and walked three of the dogs the three miles or so to the garage.

My dogs thought it was great fun, a new walk, and happily pulled me the first couple of miles before calming down. I picked up the car and, considerably poorer, I drove home.

The next day I went over to Bridlington where I’d been asked to speak to the stroke club there. I managed an hour or so in the town before I arrived at the fire station, where there is a very useful facility of a mobile office used for community events. They were a lovely group of people and I enjoyed meeting them.

Then it was a dash home to change and head off to my next commitment at the village of Stillingfleet. I wasn’t sure how long it would take and managed to explore a bit of the countryside before stopping for a coffee at the pub.

I found the institute and it was the occasion of a WI meeting with many guest branches attending. We sang Jerusalem, and if anywhere is a superb example of a Green and Pleasant Land, Stillingfleet is. The village is superb, the church beautiful and the hall was pretty impressive too.

I was made most welcome by a large group of great ladies who seemed to share my sense of humour (or mischief). I even knew a couple of them already, one being involved in the charity, Hearing Dogs for the Deaf.

The next day was busy too. I needed to do the shopping for the day at St Crux. That took me a while and then I needed to get to the church for a while and then back home to unload before driving over to Skipton. My friend Sandra Smithson from Grassington had sadly died from cancer and I attended the cremation, together with many of the Buckden Singers. It was a sad time but I hope our presence was a help to her husband and family.

I drove home and on to another talk, this time at the village of South Dalton. To attend two superbly beautiful villages in two days with wonderful countryside and views was a special treat.

I had, for the last two years, noticed a tall and impressive church spire on the horizon as I walked the dogs on the Hudson Way. I finally identified it as St Mary’s church at South Dalton. I also discovered the gastropub in the village and then it was to the village institute, which had beautiful stained glass windows and was enormous inside.

I had a good evening with the Yorkshire Countrywomen’s Association there.

The next day I was in York by 7am, and had collected the key to St Crux before the first of many helpers arrived.

I’d been worried we’d be short of helpers but needn’t have been. The congregation from All Saints at Pocklington are wonderful and the day went very well.

The weather held fine if a bit cloudy and we sold bric-a-brac and books and plants as well as refreshments. The home-made cakes and scones went down very well.

I did have to ask a pompous man who was lecturing about York to some group to move away from the yard of the church which he and his admiring pupils were blocking. Most disgruntled, he then blocked the pavement outside for a while. He made it obvious he didn’t like me.

After a successful day we were cleared up and away by 4pm.