Jill Thorp: Rosette chance for John-William at last

Jill Thorp writes for The Yorkshire Post every weekend. Picture by Gary Longbottom.
Jill Thorp writes for The Yorkshire Post every weekend. Picture by Gary Longbottom.

With a black tie dinner just over two weeks away, Paul has gone into crash diet mode. The loaf of toast, adorned with half a slab of butter and a jar of jam he manages to put away most mornings has been replaced with a grapefruit and muesli.

He sits glumly crunching his dry cereal and grimacing with every bitter mouthful of his fruit. His portion sizes have reduced significantly in size and he assures me he is refraining from cheating and he seems to be sticking to it. Or so I thought!

Jill Thorp's home, Stott Hall Farm in between the lanes of the M62. Picture by James Hardisty.

Jill Thorp's home, Stott Hall Farm in between the lanes of the M62. Picture by James Hardisty.

One day last week I phoned him up to see where he was up to with his jobs but got little out of him as he said he was in the middle of dealing with a sick calf.

I hung up and continued on my journey which some minutes later took me past Brindon Addy’s shop. Now this establishment is not one to enter if you’re on a diet. As well as being an award-winning and incredibly popular butchers, they have a superb range of cheeses, pates and of course desserts. So you can imagine my surprise when I passed what looked like our pick-up and cattle trailer parked outside, on the road.

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I did a quick check in my rear view mirror and sure enough I spotted our name on the front of the trailer. Without a second thought I executed a perfect 360 in the road, Dukes of Hazard style, and abandoned my car right outside the large glass-fronted shop.

And there he was, my husband, bent over the cake counter, greedily eyeing up the jam pasties and gooey chocolate cakes.

“Oi,” I yelled through the window as I wrapped my knuckles painfully against the pane. He stood bolt upright and froze before slowly turning around, pasty and cake in hand. My rant through the shop window continued for some time before he finally emerged still clutching his spoils.

As he handed over his forbidden food a customer sheepishly crept past us and nodding briefly in my direction hissed at Paul: “Good luck with that one, pal.”

John-William attended the last of our Whitefaced Woodland shows with his Uncle Casey last weekend. As we couldn’t make it, he decided that he would take Daddy’s very large and awkward tup instead of his own. Handling a fully grown, heavily horned hill tup would be no mean feat for a six-year-old, but he was adamant he could manage.

More to the point though, Daddy’s tup is unbeaten and John-William figured this could be his chance to finally win overall champion and possibly even a “stash”.

Early reports from the show were good, after having help to drag the unruly so and so from his pen he stood well for John-William and they won the class. Unfortunately, however, for our passionate little showman, a top class shearling ewe appeared on the scene and took the top spot of overall Woodland champion, with John-William standing reserve.

He was over the moon, thankfully, and the following day rushed in to school proudly clutching his rosettes.

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