Today’s post comes to us from NorthShorer.
I discovered on Acorn TV a series called The Yorkshire Vet, about a veterinary practice called Skeldale House that was once James Herriot’s practice. As a reader of the books and an owner of the TV series, it was a delight to find. In his last years my father thoroughly enjoyed the shows on PBS. It reminded him of his pre-World War II life in central Minnesota. The Yorkshire Vet is a documentary, not fiction, and quite well done, I thought. Herriot’s books are very much fiction.
As I often do for TV shows and books, I searched Goggle maps. Darrowby, Herriot’s fictional town, is really Thirsk, which is where the practice is today. I found The World of James Herriot, the original Skeldale House, as a museum outside of which is a full statue of Alf Wight (James Herriot’s real name). Then Google Maps gave me a shock.
A mere handful of blocks from The World of James Herriot is a Tesco, Great Britain’s huge grocery store chain (groceries plus). Not what you expect to see in sleepy little Darrowby. The TV series was filmed in another village because in fact Thirsk was not then an isolated little village. It then and now abuts three or four other towns. But still. Google maps shows me it is now the centre (may as well spell it British) of quite the population area.
When have your romantic delusions been punctured?