A Lost Yorkshire Lassie?

It seems that finally an official walking trip to the alleged grave of Robin Hood in fair Kirklees has been arranged – and has in fact – taken place this weekend. I was a bit offended not to have been invited to this walk, which was organised by a certain local history group, so I decided to take a quick drive up there to see what was going on.

I should explain that Della and myself are up in West Yorkshire – in the Green Belt in fact – for a well deserved long weekend with our friend Drew. We came up to help with a local protest about the proposed demolition of Robin Hood’s ”ancient” Victorian grave at Kirklees, in order to make way for a multipurpose bit of brown field industrial / residential / economic development.

Actually, my trip to t’grave was a bit more complicated than just that. Drew mentioned to me that more than a few of his friends were on this walk, and that he was concerned that one of the Yorkshire lassies on the walk had not returned. So, I decided to drive up there incase she had fallen into any ‘trouble’. I mean, it is fairly rugged territory, and pretty dangerous terrain for a whimsical damsel who may have wandered away from the main group in the lovelorn hope of catching a glimpse of the ghost of the legendary outlaw. She was last seen wandering off in a rather furtive fashion, clutching a copy of The Manual of Minor Exorcisms by Bishop Julian Porteous and a handful of palm crosses, which in view of my extensive occult experience I feel I am qualified to say would be of no assistance to such a novice venturing foolhardedly into this vortex of evil… But on a more practical note, I had to consider – she may have become hopelessly entangled in a bramble bush, or taken a fall in some nasty pothole. So in the spirit of Christian charity, up we went to find her, and the proof of the “pudding” is in the photo above. Ok, I know what you are all thinking, I have previously said that I never owned a driving license, and I don’t (its all I would be able to do just to steer a milk float!).  But as this was on private property and I had the owners’ permission on this occasion (use of apostrophe is deliberate) I decided to drive (well sort of rumble) along to Kirklees to look for this damsel in distress, with Della in charge of the compass.

As always seems to happen when we visit West Yorkshire we found ourselves quickly surrounded by the local paparazzi. To be honest, we are so used to our every move being documented by the Press that we didn’t worry about it. However Della did manage to get the picture above from one of the reporters who with unabashed glee informed her that the entire series of shots was winging its way across the pond for syndication across U.S. news channels! Well I certainly am glad that she managed to sweet talk the photographer in question, because I would hate this rather incriminating shot to be used in an act of misrepresentation. I mean to say – it COULD be interpreted as an active promotion and endorsement on my part of the bulldozing of this most “ancient” and precious of monuments – something to which I am vehemently opposed!

But back to the missing maid –  I’m afraid I have to report – no luck! I did try shining a torchlight about in the hope that it would catch the glare of the go-faster stripes on her tracksuit bottoms, but was unable to locate her. On a couple of occasions I thought I glimpsed her vertically challenged form sort of truffling amongst the trees, but these mirages must have been nothing but goblins, trolls and other local elemental spirits for as soon as I approached them they vanished into thin air! Anyway, I do hope the poor lassie hasn’t become a victim of that tyrannical spectre said to haunt the vicinity….the rapacious and salty RED ROGER!

But I haven’t given up, and will recommence my chivalric duties in my tipper truck tomorrow.

Back to the present, Della and I are in the safe confines of Drew’s luxury apartment, and have our fluffy white dressing gowns on, just about ready to go down to the extensive spa complex on the ground floor (by lift of course!) for a relaxing private sauna followed by a warm stone massage.

Will try to post some pictures of our Yorkshire ‘short break’ tomorrow night. In fact, we have been invited by the Todmorden Tourist Information Centre and various other relevant parties to visit the Centre Vale Park tomorrow, all of whom are hustling me to participate in an exclusive event next Summer. Anyway, that’s another story for another day. So from our picturesque vantage point over the lush Colne Valley we bid you adieu for tonight. But do keep watching this space!

David

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