My Yorkshire: Selina Scott

Once one of the most famous faces on television, the ex-newsreader fronted the ground-breaking Breakfast Time with Frank Bough and also presented The Clothes Show.

After a spell in America with her own current affairs show, she returned to the UK. Brought up near Guisborough, Selina lives on a farm in North Yorkshire, where she rears Angora goats to make socks from their wool which she sells on the internet. Recent TV appearances include BBC 2's The Underdog.

What's your favourite part of the county and why?

The North Riding. It has everything: sea, moors and unspoilt (not tarted up or urbanised) countryside.

What's your idea of a perfect day out in Yorkshire?

A drive over the moors from Kirkbymoorside to Whitby when the heather is in full purple, to polish off an enormous plate of the best fish and chips in the country.

Do you have a favourite walk or view?

Along the valley of the river Severn from Sinnington to Lastingham.

Is there a Yorkshire sportsman/woman you would like to take for lunch?

Ian Botham.

Which Yorkshire stage or screen star would you like to take for lunch?

Michael Parkinson.

If you had to name your Yorkshire hidden gem, what would it be?

The countryside around the village of Appleton-le-Moors. With wild daffodils and bluebells in the oak and beech woods and fast-running streams falling from the high moor, the village is definitely a hidden gem. The village is medieval with its strip field system still intact and it has back lanes unwrecked by development. It is a working village with moor sheep grazing the verges and two farms at its heart.

What do you think gives Yorkshire its unique identity?

Food: curd pies; Wensleydale cheese and butter; Yorkshire ham; pork pies. The list is endless.

Do you follow sport in the county and if so what?

Cricket when we are winning.

What about Yorkshire's cultural life?

Laurence Sterne's old home (he wrote Tristram Shandy) in the village of Coxwold is a good example of the talent and effort which goes into so many small artistic ventures throughout Yorkshire. There is always an interesting exhibition to enjoy.

Do you have a favourite restaurant or pub?

The White Swan in Ampleforth. You have to be in by 6pm otherwise all the tables in the bar are swamped. Great to see Yorkshire folk tuck in – and how!

Do you have a favourite shop?

Arthur Watters' post office and shop in Coxwold. He wears a bow tie and his shop is tiny, but it is cosy and he has everything in it – from heather honey to Greek currants. For 27 years he and his wife have never taken a holiday. Soon they will be gone because Arthur is retiring. The post office will close, like so many other in the countryside, and the village will practically seize up unless someone steps in and takes it on.

How do you think Yorkshire has changed in the time you've known it?

It breaks my heart to see so much of Yorkshire continue to be wrecked by planners. Where there were once old orchards in pretty villages, there are now bungalows. An entire hillside of fishermen's cottages in Whitby was bulldozed in my lifetime. As have so many Georgian homes been in town centres – razed to the ground for car parks. There still appears to be little thought given to the unique character of the built environment of Yorkshire. Take the proposed new "development" in the heart of Malton. Farmers, who give the place an atmosphere and colour, are being kicked out for yet another supermarket which will finally kill off the smaller shops. There is still no style guide so that new developments fit in with the old. Too many councils are enamoured with new builds without taking into account their scale and suitability. You can see I feel passionately about this!

Who is the Yorkshire man or woman you most admire?

Jane Tomlinson.

How has Yorkshire influenced your work?

Kept my feet on the ground.

Name your favourite Yorkshire book or author.

40 Years in a Moorland Parish by the Rev JC Atkinson. My favourite author is Alan Bennett, his monologues of Yorkshire folk make me laugh out loud.

Selina Scott mohair socks are available online at