Friday, 18 January 2013

Great News!

Much to Dominic's absolute joy (anyone who reads his blog as well as mine will know what I mean), the stage of the Tour de France in this country is going to be round the Yorkshire Dales.   It is actually going to come through our little market town of Leyburn.  Yes, I know, it will be whoosh and gone, but I know without a shadow of a doubt that Dominic will be there to see them streak past.   Like all these events seeing it in the flesh is so much more exciting than seeing it on television.

There is, for local people, another reason why it is a good thing.  In our local weekly paper, The Darlington and Stockton Times (published every Friday) one of our local traders is complaining about how our little town is dying on its feet.   Because tourism was so very bad last year (bad weather for a start) businesses are having to close down because they are not making enough to survive.   The trouble is that many local shops cater for tourists - in other aspects they cannot compete with the supermarkets anyway - or (in the case of our up-market grocers) for the top end of the population in terms of disposable income.   Tourist shops selling knick-knackery to passing trade do very badly in wet weather or when there are no tourists about.   Well, the Tour de France will at least give them a week of saturation tourists I would have thought.

So the poor farmer and I have now to suffer six months of waiting for the Tour de France and hearing a lot of commentary about it!  Dominic rang last night to tell us and the farmer took the wind out of his sails by telling him that we already knew.   Rather cruel of him I thought - he should have expressed surprise.   But that is not the way of North Yorkshire farmers I'm afraid.

On another topic entirely, there are about six or seven serious gas leaks along our Lane and most of them have been there for two or three years in spite of constant reminders being telephoned to the appropriate gas authority.   In this wet weather you can hear the gas bubbling up and see the bubbles in the puddles.   The smell as you walk past is very strong.   Friend, S, mentioned them to me in The Golden Lion this morning as she had walked past and that prompted me to telephone once more and report them.   If nothing is done this time, on the advice of another friend, N, I shall ring the Health and Safety Executive and report it to them.

Goldilocks and the Three Bears tonight in our local hall - weather permitting.   No snow yet although the sky looks full of the stuff.  Keep warm. 



mrsnesbitt said...

I thought about you last night Pat when we heard the news on Look North. Snowing here but we are cabined up! lol!

Heather said...

I'm so pleased for Dominic and other local enthusiasts of cycling. I've never taken an interest although did cheer Bradley Wiggins on in the Olympic events. I'm pleased for Leyburn too. There are too many empty shops in every town so hopefully a spell of fine weather will help fill the B&Bs and shops with customers.
Those gas leaks are appalling. No wonder the price keeps rising when so much is going to waste.
Enjoy the Panto - we have had 3 or 4 inches of snow and the sky still looks laden. What a good thing we went out yesterday to stock up.

Crafty Green Poet said...

Good news about the Tour de France, bad news about the gas leaks, outrageous (but somehow not surprising) that they've not yet been fixed

Gwil W said...

Has anybody tried setting fire to the bubbles? You know what children are like. What do your local fire brigade think about the lack alacrity on the side of the gas industry?

it's me said...

Good news about the Tour de France! We always enjoy the brief glimpses of the countryside when we watch it on tv--not really sport fans, otherwise.

Small town America is dying too. I always lament the empty storefronts when we do our roadtrips.

I'd be frantic about the gas leaks.

Liz said...

I think that you may have to suffer commentary about the Tour de France for a few months longer! it's in 2014! I thought it was this year when I first read about it and that we would be in Swaledale on holiday at the time - then we realised that it's next year!!
Best wishes
Liz in a very snowy Norfolk

Gwil W said...

To make it clear this is the 2014 Tour de France we are talking about. I believe the 2013 event starts in Corsica. The first two stages are in Yorkshire. Places like Hebden Bridge and Hawes are on the routes. The third stage is Cambridge to London.

I don't know if the Lance Armstrong doping revelations on the Oprah Winfrey show will affect visitor numbers but probably not as a year is a long time in cycling. The previous start and early stages in the UK was seen live by a million fans and it was the year after Floyd Landis doped.

MorningAJ said...

We have serious snow settling in here. K and I have both come home early from work.

I hope the Tour de France helps Leyburn. It would be a shame for it to close up.

George said...

Congratulations, Pat, on the Tour de France. That should be great fun!

angryparsnip said...

How exciting for you, Dominic and your town !
Ok I must be dense... Why is The Tour de France in the UK ? since I know nothing about cycling I assume it is to pick who will ride in France ?
Cycling is very big in Tucson. We have our own Tour de Tucson where people from all over the world come to ride in it. It comes just down the street from me and next year some friends and I will be sitting cheering everyone on.
Many countries train their teams in Tucson. You can see a team zooming down the same road I drive on near my home.

Keep safe and warm
cheers, parsnip

JoAnn ( Scene Through My Eyes) said...

Wow - you are full of good news. That will be such a grand thing - people coming from all around to watch those young bicycle riders whoosh by and will talk of it for years to come. One time we saw the Olympic torch pass through our town and we still speak of it. I'm sure the shop owners will be happy for just a bit of a respite.

Stay warm - especially if it snows. And get after those gas people - we don't want to see anyone caught fire or blown to bits.

Dartford Warbler said...

That is very good news for Yorkshire and I`m sure you will have plenty of people visiting to line the route of the Tour de France. Let`s hope they will spend their money in the small local shops while they are there!

Those gas leaks need sorting out ASAP! We had a leak in a nearby lane last year. The Gas people were very quick at sorting it out as a nursing home is on the other side of the hedge.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Oh dear - I now find I have eighteen months to keep hearing about the Tour! Thanks for telling me that and for calling.

Golden West said...

Spring looks to be just around the corner there, Pat, what with the return of so many birds and daffodils in the offing!