YP Letters: Memories of Hannah Hauxwell

Tributes continue to be paid to Hannah Hauxwell.
Tributes continue to be paid to Hannah Hauxwell.
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From: Gwen Hullah, Harrogate.

IT was with empathy that I read “Farewell Hannah” and the anecdotes by those who had had the privilege of meeting Hannah Hauxwell (The Yorkshire Post, February 1).

Hannah was like so many women in those days. By tradition, it was taken for granted that farmers’ wives more often than not “worked to death” while daughters, knowing no better, toiled relentlessly alongside mothers and their menfolk, in a world where horse-power (Shires) was king; a daily work-force wherein stoicism replaced sentimentality.

Pragmatism was preferred to romance, and the need to addle a living from one season to the next, year in year out, always over-rode everything.

As an old saying goes – “You can always tell a Dales person by the way they don’t suck, they crunch a boiled sweet” – and “They’d skin a flea for its hide”, catchwords used without self-consciousness.

I know all this and much more. I’m a bred and born Dales land girl.

From: Catherine and Chris Nutton, Joseph Morton, Morley.

WE formed a friendship with Hannah Hauxwell after reading her books out loud to my father – who was 101 years old at that time.

We were very privileged to visit her on numerous occasions with my father, she always asked us to keep in touch. We chatted for hours – on many subjects she was very interested in you as a person and was really impressed when we told her that our daughter was named after her.

Her tastes in food were quite plain. Bacon sandwiches were one of her favourites but definitely not smoked! Biscuits plain – not fancy – and she loved tinned plums.

Being an animal lover, it wasn’t long before Hannah asked us to bring Toby our dog to visit her. She politely asked us to send her a photo of him too “so that he will always be with me”. How could we refuse?

On one visit it was our wedding anniversary and she surprised us by playing Oh Perfect Love on her keyboard. We videoed it. What a special time that was for us. We will treasure the card and all the books she personalised for us.

We will be attending her funeral with lots of fond memories, she will be so sadly missed.

From: Doreen Rose, Back Lane, Helperby, York.

REGARDING dear Hannah Hauxwell, my husband and I went to visit her after we had seen the documentary Too Long A Winter about her.

When she came to the door, she said: “I’m sorry I can’t let you in, you see I’ve got shingles.” We gave her the groceries we had brought for her. She was very grateful.

We visited her quite a lot after that. One time when we went one of her cows was calving. She began to panic a bit but Reg, my husband, helped her cope. She was so pleased how everything had gone that she called the calf Rose after our surname.

My brother took me to see her at her cottage in Cotherstone. I told her Reg had died, and she said “I’ll always remember him helping me”.

God bless Hannah.

Question of disrespect

From: Mrs A Holloway, Blayds Garth, Leeds

I AM writing to say how much I agree with your Editorial headlined “A thankless task” (The Yorkshire Post, February 3).

Laura Kuenssberg does have a very contemptuous and disrespectful way of interviewing Theresa May.

Mrs May cannot see into the future and gives her answers in a respectful way which I admire.

It must be like a very annoying wasp buzzing round her head and prepared to sting!

Let’s hope the BBC does not let this snide pontificator inflict her malice upon other interviewees.

From: James Robson, West End, Kirbymoorside.

THANK you for reprimanding Laura Kuenssberg for her disgraceful grilling of the Prime Minister. At last someone in the media has had the nerve to call out this biased, rude and egotistical woman. She seems to regard herself as the centre of every interview and discussion she takes part in.

I would simply ask for a little fairness in interviews. Stick to your guns Theresa May – at least 17 million citizens are urging you on.

Firemark work of art

From: Barry Atkinson, Ruswarp, Whitby.

WHAT a lovely article (The Yorkshire Post, February 5) featuring Dr Kirk’s collection at the Castle Museum in York.

Those of us of a certain age who worked for the Yorkshire Insurance Company will immediately recognise the two featured firemarks, particularly the photograph on page three displaying York Minster. I have always thought this to be one of the finest firemarks produced by any insurer.

In the late 1950s/early 60s, I was an underwriter in the Hull branch. At that time the company had a beautiful letterhead featuring the Minster firemark embossed in full colour – really a work of art. However, head office made it quite clear that this No 1 letterhead was to be used sparingly and only when writing to substantial clients.

Dire forecasts of icy doom

From: Ian Elwess, Kirk Smeaton, Pontefract.

WHAT do motorway gantries, the BBC weather forecast and politicians have in common? You can’t believe a word they say.

All this doom and gloom about heavy snow and, even worse, the stupid naming of a bit of wind. If you took notice you’d never leave the house. Come back Bill Foggitt – even you were more believable.