Summer Wine village offers visitors taste of artist’s vision

TOURISTS and walking enthusiasts flocking to Last of the Summer Wine country are being invited to discover the hidden secrets of Holmfirth in a walk devised by local artist Ashley Jackson.

The watercolour artist has helped devise a walk to showcase the hidden hamlets, streams, back streets and open countryside in and around the West Yorkshire town which has inspired his work for decades.

Mr Jackson, who has a gallery in Holmfirth, will be joined by children from Wooldale junior and infant school when the walk is launched on Tuesday, April 12.

Details of the route will be released next month.

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The artist said there is more to Holmfirth and the Holme Valley than initially meets the eye.

Mr Jackson added: “I have always said many people look but few see. I hope this walk will encourage others to see the beauty of the landscape and value it for other generations. It will also possibly explain how Holmfirth and its surrounding moorland has continued to influence me.”

The walk has been developed by Mr Jackson and Kirklees Council, and is backed by the tourism agency, Welcome to Yorkshire.

It will allow walkers to follow in the artist’s footsteps and stop at exact locations to compare the artist’s watercolour interpretation with the actual view.

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The chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, Gary Verity, said: “Holmfirth is a place of outstanding natural beauty and Ashley’s work has played a key part in raising its profile as a visitor destination.

“This innovative walk will not only attract more people to visit the area, but allow people to experience the journeys Ashley went on which inspired him to create such wonderful work.”

The walk is accessible to all and is free.

Walkers can also dip in to the different sections according to their abilities.

The majority of the walk is along quiet single track roads and so is quite safe for families.

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The walk is aimed at highlighting the beauty surrounding Holmfirth that is often missed by visitors.

A free full colour guide supporting the walk will be available through Kirklees Tourist Information offices and to download from Mr Jackson’s website from April 12.

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