Local news & events

LEISURE CENTRE TO GET A £3.8 MILLION FACELIFT (with artist impression)

A £3.8million scheme to upgrade and extend Thirsk’s leisure centre has been given the green light.

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It includes creating a 24 hour gym and enlarged studios for exercise classes and cycling stations – as well as replacing outdated plant equipment that has forced the centre’s pools to close several times this year.

Members of Hambleton District Council’s Cabinet are recommending to Full Council that cash is released for the scheme which will bring the 30 year old centre bang up to date.

Built in 1991 the Thirsk and Sowerby Leisure Centre also needs a new roof to address much needed repairs and condensation issues experienced within the building.  Old plant machinery also needs replacing – with greener, more environmentally sustainable equipment.

“Gyms, indoor spaces and swimming pools play an essential part in helping people to achieve a healthy lifestyle and a recent report showed tha

t Hambleton district needed to extend its leisure provision,” said Cabinet Member for Leisure, Councillor Bridget Fortune.

“We have already begun to address that need through the changes and expansion made at Northallerton Leisure Centre and these plans at Thirsk will go a long way to improving provision in the south of our district.

“Hambleton District Council has long been committed to providing high quality leisure venues and our strategy is to continue to invest in these facilities

. Bringing Thirsk up to date is an important part of that plan. We’ve already made improvements to Stokesley Leisure Centre, with more on the way and we have aspirations for Bedale too.” The final touches are also being made to a sports hall and 3g pitch at Easingwold school that received £650,000 support from the council.

In addition to the planned changes with the plant and roof at Thirsk, the project will include a 60 station 24/7 gym, 30 person studio and a 25 person cycling studio.    It is expected that the work will take around 26 weeks to complete and will be undertaken through a partnership with Alliance Leisure Services, which undertook the project work at Northallerton.


Alison Oldfield (communications officer) on 01609 767243

July 28, 2020


Hambleton’s world famous visitor centre, The World of James Herriot, is ‘Good to Go’ following its four month shutdown.
The Thirsk based centre is the first in the district to be awarded Visit Britain’s ‘We’re Good to Go’ mark after complying with all the processes needed to open safely.
It is the official mark for the tourist industry signalling a business has followed government covid19 guidance and has processes in place to maintain cleanliness and observe social distancing guidelines.
“Getting the centre back up and running is vital to the economy of Thirsk – and the district,” said Leader of Hambleton District Council, Councillor Mark Robson.
“It brings in people from across the country – and the world – who want to know more about one of our most famous sons. And for the centre to be awarded the ‘Good to Go’ mark seals the hard work put in to get it up and running once more.”
The centre, a tribute to the world’s most famous vet and author Alf Wight – aka James Herriot – will reopen to the public next Wednesday (July 15). Over the last few weeks several changes have been made to the centre – there is a new one way system meaning that all customers will now enter through the famous red door and leave via the shop. Timed tickets can be bought on line and will be restricted to 25 an hour – although people can also turn up and pay at the new entrance booth – sited within the museum ‘dining room’. And customers who don’t get the chance to watch the tribute film will be offered a free copy of it as they leave.
“We are doing all we can to make visits to the centre as good as they have always been but there have had to be changes – not least with a new one way system,” said Centre Managing Director, Ian Ashton. “There will be less volunteers in the building to guide people and we will encourage people to keep on the move as much as possible to observe the social distancing restrictions.
“It is a difficult time for everyone in this industry but we are pleased to be opening up again and hope that with this Visit Britain recognition people will feel confident they can visit us safely.”

Aly Thompson (communications officer) on 01347 838118
July 8, 2020


Hambleton’s four leisure centres are ready to reopen at the end of this month.
The district council run centres in Northallerton, Thirsk, Stokesley and Bedale will throw open their doors to the public on July 25 - 125 days after the coronavirus pandemic forced them to close.
Staff are busy putting the final touches to the changes needed to make the buildings Covid safe – including social distancing measures.
To ensure the safety of customers and teams hand sanitisers have been installed across the centres, glass screens fitted at receptions, safety and usage guidance displayed and there will be more cleaning, more often.
Swimming pools, gyms and Northallerton’s toning suite will be open – as well as fitness classes. Numbers will be restricted for all facilities in order to comply with social distancing measures.
“Our leisure centres are a vital cog in the work of the district council – and for our residents who rely on them for keeping physically and mentally fit and healthy,” said Council Leader, Councillor Mark Robson.
“So we were delighted that we have got the go ahead to reopen them later this month. A good deal of work has gone into getting them Covid safe and our staff have been trained in how the new regulations will work.
“We are slowly seeing life get back to normal and leisure centres play a big part in that process. During the closures we have promoted the message ‘stay active, stay healthy, stay safe’ and we continue to do that.”
Throughout the lockdown centre staff have been posting motivational classes and fitness challenges on social media – and given advice and tips on how to stay healthy and keep fit.
All information on reopening plans, opening hours and advice for customers will be available on the leisure centre social media pages – Northallerton Leisure Centre, Thirsk and Sowerby Leisure Centre, Bedale Leisure Centre and Stokesley Leisure Centre; on the ‘Zest’ app (available on the app store and google play); and at https://www.hambleton.gov.uk/zest/homepage/87/leisure_centres_re-opening

Aly Thompson (communications officer) on 01347 838118
July 10, 2020




Plans to undertake further work at Dalton Bridge to alleviate on going flooding problems have been given the go ahead by district councillors.

Members of Hambleton District Council’s Cabinet yesterday (Tuesday July 7) gave their approval for the £250-300,000 scheme which will be jointly funded with North Yorkshire County Council.

It aims to deal with some of the contributory causes of flooding that were not apparent when the original improvement scheme was implemented.   The unprecedented road flooding caused by back to back storms in February this year showed that further works were needed.  Part of Dalton Lane will be raised through this new scheme.

District Council Leader, Councillor Mark Robson said that although the February storms were unprecedented, Dalton Bridge and the surrounding area was badly affected.

“Much work has been going on since these storms to identify how we can prevent this happening in the future.   I welcome the further work which will safeguard us against a weather event like this in the future.”


Aly Thompson (communications officer) on 01347 838118

July 8, 2020

Parish Newsletter

Due to the Coronavirus, we are not delivering paper copies of the Parish Newsletter to the residents of Tollerton: please read it here. If you know someone who doesn’t use electronic forms of communication and you know they would like a copy then please print a copy and put it through their letter box.

Paper copies of the Parish Newsletter are also available in the village shop.

Click here to download a copy

Warehills Lane Newton Road Junction

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Representatives of the Parish Council have met with a North Yorkshire County Council Traffic Engineer to discuss the safety of the Warehills Lane/Newton Road Junction.

It as agreed that the junction had several problems and would benefit from a redesign however NYCC have limited funds for this type of work and have many more pressing junctions that require change.

It is important that we continue to monitor accidents and incidents at the junction and report when these happen.







Cherry trees at end of Main Street.

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The Parish Council has had these Cherry Trees trimmed by a tree surgeon recently as branches interfere with the telephone lines. We have been informed that several of the trees are dead or diseased and require removal. There are large branches overhanging the path and the road that are a danger.

We therefore plan to apply for permission to have the trees removed once the bird nesting season is completed. Once removed the Parish Council plans to replant the area with new trees.

Please contact the Parish Council if you have ideas for the area or wish to discuss these plans.