The Week in the Life column with Keith Tordoff

We have been clearing an overgrown footpath to a grotto at Our Lady Immaculate church.
We have been clearing an overgrown footpath to a grotto at Our Lady Immaculate church.

You wait for a bus and then three come along. One bus from Harrogate, one from Keighley, and one from Selby all carrying lots of passengers. The buses had all arrived at Pateley Bridge bus terminus on Sunday in what is a collaboration between different bus companies to connect their services on Sundays and Bank Holidays throughout the summer bringing people to the area.

The number 24 bus service from Harrogate to Pateley Bridge was a few days ago voted the 16th most scenic bus journey in the country in a nationwide poll. It is fantastic that Nidderdale has bus services in the area as many rural communities around the country have lost theirs.

Talking of Sunday services I have been a regular visitor to church in recent weeks and not just on a Sunday. The church I have been going to is Our Lady Immaculate on Panorama Way, Pateley Bridge.

Father Mike Walsh, the parish priest, along with many of his parishioners and people from the community like myself have been clearing areas of the grounds which have become overgrown.

We are all working together to clear a footpath which leads to a grotto where there is a statue of the Virgin Mary. In the hot weather it has been hard work but everyone is so enthusiastic wanting to open up to parishioners and visitors a very special place in the church grounds. There will even be fourteen handmade mosaics which represent the ‘Stations of the Cross’ and will be set in stones on the path leading to the grotto. These 14 mosaics commemorates Jesus Christ’s last day on Earth as a man.

The work at the church is just one of the projects for the Pateley Bridge in Bloom group to show to the judges of the Yorkshire in Bloom competition.

The Pateley Bridge entry in the competition is also being filmed for the BBC TV programme ‘Britain in Bloom’.

The TV cameras will also be in Pateley Bridge on Friday morning this week when a TV production company film for a Channel 5 programme visits. The show is about the history of confectionery and will feature the children tasting traditional sweets which they would not normally buy or have tasted.

The history and background of Pateley Bridge and Nidderdale is the bedrock of the area and community, and a couple who are using that history to good effect in their everyday business are Bev and Phil Anderson.

I was delighted a few days ago to go along to the official opening of Bev and Phil’s business ‘Folk Finders’ which traces family history.

The opening ceremony of their new shop on Pateley Bridge High Street was carried out by their very first customer Philip Clarke, along with their latest and youngest customer Will Hall who is 14 years old.

I wish Bev and Phil every success with their business.

I would also like to wish Tim Ledbetter and his wife Nancy all the best for their trip to London next Tuesday. Tim was nominated to attend Her Majesty the Queen’s garden party at Buckingham Palace in recognition of the voluntary work he carries out in the community through the Nidderdale Chamber of Trade.

I am also delighted that our constituency MP The Right Honourable Julian Smith has offered to make Tim and Nancy’s day even more special by inviting them to Downing Street for a reception before they go on to Buckingham Palace for the garden party.

I am sure the day will be very special with lots of happy memories and is thoroughly well deserved.