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Helen Clark Blog : Sheep Tails and Perfect Fleeces

Blog Posted on 21 Jul 2011

My Sproglet was away on a school Geography trip in Castleton last week. So that I didn’t have sleepless nights worrying myself silly that my son and heir was going to bungie jump off Mam Tor or go sky diving off Winnats Pass, the Hubster and I went away for a few days with Bog Dog (for those new to my blogs you won’t have a clue, who, or indeed what I am on about, but bear with me for the rest – you’ll catch on!)

We decided we’d have a walking holiday in North Yorkshire – it’s surprisingly like the Peak District in places did you know?  In fact the little village we stopped in, was so like Foolow, it was uncanny. It even had a little pond but I don’t think it was meant to be a pond – just a big patch of muddy water in somebody’s garden which the cows drank out of.
Now seeing as the Hubster is a fair weather walker and he doesn’t walk much – anywhere – I did think this a tad ambitious, but I nodded enthusiastically and off we popped.  We stayed in a gorgeous little village pub where James Herriot had his honeymoon. Now I’m a total closet Herriot fan. I have all the CD’S and have watched them thrice whilst painting – yes I can multitask like a guddun – I’ve read all the books as a child and decided at an early age I too would be a vet until I watched Watership Down and that was the end of that. I decided I’d paint animals instead as I was quite clearly not cut out to be a vet.

I loved the scenery on the credits of All Creatures Great and Small It was a great place to go visit all the waterfalls (Aysgarth Falls is spectacular and I could just envisage Kevin Costner in his tights – you know because Robin Hood Prince of Thieves was filmed there – that wasn’t just a random thought and I haven’t got a fetish for men in tights, honest) 

Anyway move over Kevin cos  I fell in love with the North Yorkshire sheep.  Swaledales with gorgeous little black faces and the most amazing horns you’ve ever seen.  I’m pretty sure we have a flock in our very own Peak District, on the moors around Padley and Burbage ,  near Hathersage , but they’re tame, manicured and coiffed sheep……..
…….compared to the wild and woolly creatures from the Dales.

North Yorkshire sheep  are proper hard sheep – sheep you wouldn’t want to mess with. Sheep  with raggy fleeces and limps, but who carry on regardless tramping miles,  munching grass, eyeing you suspiciously with menace in their eyes. 

 I couldn’t wait to get back to Rowsley to paint them!

(Just indulge me with another little brag, but those lovely Peak District Online folk have made me another 2 videos , so grab a cuppa and have a little look:  with all my cats with some art in progress )

This blog was brought to you by Helen Clark

Type Of Art: Painting
Location: Caudwell's Mill, Rowsley
Contact Number: 01629 732 638

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