Weather forecasts for the coming weekend don’t look positive; wind, rain and high winds making an unwelcome return. So let’s bask in the comfort of our February heatwave a little while longer and look back to last Saturday.
I’ve already written of the following day’s escapade which involved a journey westwards to Preston. Saturday brought a trip north, into and through much of the Yorkshire Dales: Skipton, Grassington, Kettlewell, Starbottom, Buckden and finally the village of Leyburn, the home of Wensleydale Rugby Club. The Cawkill Park club are currently riding high atop Yorkshire Division Three, having won all but one of their league fixtures.
After consuming one of Wensleydale’s delicious bacon sandwiches I went out to set up cameras and watch the teams warming up. On this day the hosts were facing perhaps their biggest challenge in the form of Harrogate Pythons, just one place below them in the table.
Wensleydale’s ground, lying on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, is surrounded by beautiful countryside and on this day it was bathed in warm sunshine. Only slight blemish was the mist lying above the valley, obscuring and blurring the distant hills.
As Wensleydale’s official match report describes, the game’s early stages were strewn with errors. However, it was the home side that made the least and capitalised most on those of their opponents. By half time Wensleydale were 20-0 up; a lead which flattered only marginally.
Wensleydale added further points before Pythons scored, giving the merest hint of a revival. The hosts quickly snuffed out any idea of that happening and by the time the visitors scored again the game had slipped away from them. Final score was 39-14, so Wensleydale go marching on. Well done to them, commiserations to Pythons and thanks to all for a great afternoon out in the early Spring sunshine. More photos to view here.