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Farewell to Val

We are sad to report the death of Val Walmsley, a well-known village personality for many years before she moved to London in 2008 to be near her daughters. Val is pictured here as she departed from the village in her familiar and well-used camper van. While living here she took an active part in various village activities including the Entertainments Group, the Produce Show, the Book Group and Classical Music Group which will include a Chopin prelude (the first piece of music she included at the Group in June, 2002) and to be re-played at their next meeting in her memory. Also well remembered is Bob Walmsley, her husband who pre-deceased her. Details of Val's funeral will be added shortly.


RAF Log Book
records bombing
raids in 1943

The Log Book complete with the blotting paper Alec used.

This week most of us have been watching events to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings on 6 June 1944 but, as far as we know, no Bishop Monkton servicemen took part in that operation. However we do know that Flt Lt Alec Renton, son of Mr and Mrs C. B. Renton of Fernleigh, Bishop Monkton, was on active service elsewhere in Europe a year earlier.  An RAF Log Book, now a treasured part of the Local History Group’s growing Village Archive, shows that during June 1943 he was making almost nightly raids in his Lancaster bomber over such targets as Dusseldorf, Cologne and Wuppertal, and on each sortie carrying bombs with one of them weighing 4,000lb.  Later that year Alec received the DFM (Distinguished Flying Medal) at Buckingham Palace. After the war he was a director of Bishop Monkton Paper Mill. 


Queen's Award for scuba diving volunteers

Congratulations to all those involved in the Scuba Diving for All programme held at Ripon Baths twice a week. The group has now received the Queen's Award for Voluntary Service - a well deserved honour. On a Wednesday evening volunteers dive on a one to one basis with adults with special needs and on a Sunday help people who are diving for the first time or who are improving their skills or training for a PADI qualification. Bishop Monkton's Pamela Brown and Becky Owram are among the volunteers who  carry out this very valuable work and both say they get a lot of fulfilment from it and from the fund-raising which it also involves.


An historical gem on our doorstep

Twenty three members of Bishop Monkton Local History Group visited Markenfield Hall on Thursday afternoon. They were given a fascinating talk about the history of the building, parts of which date back to 1310, and about the people who have lived there from medieval times to the present day. The visit concluded with tea and cake in the historic kitchen and a tour of the gardens.

Congratulations from The Queen

A card Netta will always treasure.

Over 80 guests crowded the Village Hall on Sunday afternoon for a party to honour Netta Park who was celebrating her 100th birthday - and she did it in style, thanks to her good  friends at the Methodist Church. Today read our special report and photographs recalling parts of Netta’s long life in Bishop Monkton, starting with the time she caught measles here 98 years ago!

Click here for Netta's story.


Bumper Hog Roast realises £2,500

Gerald Shervington takes a well earned sit down beside the beck just about 12 hours after he and others started at 4am getting the hog ready for roasting. But all the hard work has paid off - the event raised a whopping £2,500 for Village Hall funds.

Now read Gerald's round up of the day.

Click on NEWS/Bumper Hog Roast.


See more pictures and a video below or 

Click here for even more photos!


Piggies set a crackling pace

They're off: The 12.30 at Bishop Monkton is watched by large enthusiast crowd.

Now watch a video of the second race  -

For Gerald's round-up of the day click on NEWS/Bumper Hog Roast .


  • DIY triumph

    The remarkable story of how Bishop Monkton auctioneer Richard Harper (with no previous building experience) undertook the extend his iconic 300-year-old Grade 2 listed cottage. 

  • Nature resereve

    Yorkshire Wildlife Trust has opened a brand new nature reserve called Ripon City Wetlands, which is situated just south of Ripon (neighbouring Ripon Racecourse) and has already attracted thousands of wetland birds, including rare avocets. 

  • Local history

    Over 60 villagers crowded into the Village Hall for an open meeting of Bishop Monkton Local History Group. The 'class' heard a talk about the group's new website, details about the village's Conservation area and a briefing about the group's forthcoming programme of events. 

  • Abseiling feat

    Christine Ewalt, pictured above abseiling in New Zealand, has abseiled down Ripon Cathedral  to raise money for the Fabric Fund at St John the Baptist Church.  A sponsor form can be found at the back of the Church.

  • Croquet winners

    Bishop Monton Croquet Club joined clubs across Britain in celebrating National Croquet Day. Kneale Kimber and Sara MacPherson are pictured after receiving prizes in a progressive doubles competition from Club Chairman Richard Field.

  • Friends of School

    Pupils at Bishop Monkton School trying out the 25 new iPads which were bought for them as a result of the big race day last year organised by The Beck Busters. A similar event is being planned this year for Sunday, September 15.

  • New party venue

    The impressive extension to the Village Hall pavilion is now almost completed. The potential future use for this large sitting out /viewing area is now obvious for all to see, and good use of it will be made in the coming summer.


Council ideas for making our roads safer
The Parish Council says it is aware that many residents are concerned with the speed of vehicles driving through Bishop Monkton.
The Council is currently working with Councillor Harrison from North Yorkshire County Council to improve this. At present, the Council is researching effective speed calming measures including the following:
A speed matrix sign that can be moved to different sites in the village.
A mini roundabout at the junction
A Community Speedwatch Scheme
Realigning the lines at the junction
A STOP sign at the junction

The Council says: 'Please be assured that their aim is to improve the safety of local residents and are working on this as a matter of urgency'. 
Why Parish Council minutes will not be published on this site in future

The Parish Council clerk has written to the Editor with the following decision: 'It was agreed previously that the minutes and agenda could be published on the BM Today website but councillors now feel it would go against the GDPR policy and therefore would like to kindly ask you not to upload any documents on to the website in the future'. 
A double winner
The Parish Church is launching a Church Village Draw Club which will offer you the chance of winning cash prizes while at the same time contributing to the Church's Fabric Fund.
For more details go to PARISH CHURCH/News and events.

Missing house sign
A green slate house sign ‘Summerfield’ has vanished from outside Chris and Helen Bagnall's house. Could people please keep an eye out for it as it may turn up somewhere and can be returned. 

Lost bracelet
Joan Walker has lost a bracelet that is special to her.
She thinks it may have fallen off her wrist whilst strolling round the village.
If anyone has found it but doesn't know who owns it, please can they e-mail Joan on or return it to Elm Tree Rise.

To dog owners
David Banks has written to us today to say piles of dog mess left on the pavements  continues to be a problem on St John's Road, and probably elsewhere.
He asks all dog owners to be sure to pick up these messes when they occur.

Over £500 raised
A total of £508 was raised for Christian Aid from collections in  Bishop Monkton.
The organiser would like to thank those who helped with the collections, and those who donated.

Phil finds the best tasty takeaway around

Late every afternoon Phil the pheasant flies into his favourite restaurant - Harvey and Charlotte Bigg’s Tasty Takeaway. It's the only place to go when he's feeling a bit peckish!  
He announces his arrival on the terrace with a loud squawk followed by a tap, tap, tapping on the French window pane.
His hosts rush to serve him his usual menu – sunflower hearts and sultanas which he gobbles up with an approving clucking and is now tame enough to eat out of Harvey’s hand.
When his crop won’t take any more, he saunters over to the birdbath, without a care in the world, has a good glug to wash it all down and then whoosh, he’s away over the hedge and into the sunset, without so much as a thank you. See you tomorrow, Phil, you funny pheasant........

Jungle marathon for charity

Katie Wade, who competed in the Brussels half marathon, has recently run another half marathon in very different conditions - in the jungle of Sierra Leone!
Click Here to find what took Paul and Katie Wade to West Africa.

Click here for more details and to make a donatio
Letters to Editor
A number of you have contacted us to say you have had difficulty sending us messages for publication using our Guestbook facility so we have removed this section and it will be replaced for the present with a new section entitled Letters to Editor. Messages for this can be sent to as normal e-mails and will be published, subject to usual conditions, under this new title.
Go to LETTERS TO EDITOR (last item on the navigation bar).
Call for action

Read what villagers think needs to be done to prevent further accidents occurring at our dangerous crossroads.
Go to VILLAGE FORUM/Dangerous crossroads.
Click here
Let's do it again!

Aerial picture of Freedom Mill.

The Local History Groups' first outing of the year, a walk with Sue Hargreaves entitled 'From Mill to Mill', greatly interested the 17 hardy individuals who braved the weather to join it on May 9.
Now it is hoped it can be repeated for a number of villagers who were away on holidays at the time and would love to join if another walk can be arranged.. Over to you, Sue!

What's On
Don't forget to regularly check What's On, Click here to keep you up to date with all of the forthcoming events.

Unity Hield remembered

Unity Hield, artist, scuptor, lover of wildlife and well loved village personality, is remembered In our In Memoriam column where we include details of  the lives of many village notables who have now sadly left us.

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Click below to find what the local weather has in store.

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Editor: Richard Field, BCAc
Assistant to the Editor: Pat Field
Technical  Adviser: Martin Minett

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Table Tennis, Croquet or Life Savers
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Tuesday 18 June 2019
Visits to site since launch in 2005: 
Log ins since yesterday: 319

Site launch:
29 January 2005
(day of new Village Hall opening).
Record one day visitors
435 on 25 September 2012
Record one month visitors: 4,152 on June 2012
Reached 333,333 hits: Friday, 30 Sept 2016
Reached 400,000 hits:Wednesday,12 July 2017
Reached 500,000 hits:  Friday,14 September 2018

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