News

02 May 2015

Guild clothing now available to purchase

We have partnered with Foxstitch to offer a range of quality, Guild branded apparel at affordable prices. For more information and details on how to order, visit our Clothing page


01 December 2014

Autumn 2014 newsletter

Autumn 2014 newsletter coverOur autumn 2014 newsletter is now available to download via the link below. Highlights of this issue include:

  • Chairman's Chat - a review of our year
  • The Crimple Valley Oracle - our latest project at the Great Yorkshire Showground
  • The Ennismore Irish Arch - an article by our Canadian member, John Redican
PDF icon Autumn 2014 newsletter

06 July 2014

Crimple Valley Oracle takes shape at Great Yorkshire Showground

Johnny Clasper and Bill CowlingVisitors arriving at the Great Yorkshire Show (Tuesday 8 – Thursday 10 July 2014) will be able to watch a new ‘eye-catching’ attraction take shape as they walk through one of the entrance gates to the 250-acre showground. Sculptor Johnny Clasper, a member of the Yorkshire Dry Stone Walling Guild, has been commissioned to create a 10m long dry stone wall made from Yorkshire limestone.

But the ‘Crimple Valley Oracle’ is a far cry from a traditional dry stone wall – when complete the new feature will be 1.5m at its highest point with a 600mm viewing ‘eye’ towards one of the showground’s main exhibition halls, and towards another of the Guild’s creations, a dry stone wall memorial seat. The commission has come from the Yorkshire Agricultural Society, organisers of the three day farming and countryside extravaganza.

The project was the idea of Show Director Bill Cowling, who is also President of the Guild, and Guild Director Dave Purvis. They then called on Johnny to design and start building the new feature with a key requirement that show visitors could see it take shape over the three days. Bill explained: “Dry stone walling is such a crucial, traditional skill, and it is important that we showcase it to our visitors. The English countryside and Yorkshire in particular has thousands of miles of dry stone walls, and although what our visitors will see at the Great Yorkshire is far from traditional, it demonstrates the creativity and imagination of the wallers. Hopefully it will be inspirational and encourage others to help maintain what is an integral part of the fabric of our countryside.”

A stone mason who grew up close to the showground, Johnny is a former pupil of Rossett School in Harrogate. He started his working life as a bricklayer, but became more and more interested in dry stone walling and sculpture. “I am inspired by nature. Stone is a natural material and I try to make my work look as though it is grown from the earth, and is organic. I wanted to push the boundaries of traditional stone walling as far as I could and combine this with modern creativity,” said Johnny, whose creations have won him four Gold Awards at the Harrogate Flower Shows. “I grew up in Harrogate on Hookstone Drive and this area used to be my playground. Working at the Great Yorkshire Showground is like reliving my childhood,” he said.

Johnny has been busy building the ‘eye’ of the wall in the run-up to show and will be assisted throughout the three days by members of the Yorkshire Dry Stone Walling Guild and volunteers from the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority. The wall is being built at Brown Gate off Railway Road and it is expected that the project will continue to take shape during the next two Great Yorkshire Shows for visitors to watch. 

Article/image copyright © 2014 Yorkshire Agricultural Society


01 December 2013

Autumn 2013 newsletter

Our autumn 2013 newsletter is now available to download via the link below

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01 December 2012

Autumn 2012 newsletter

Our autumn 2012 newsletter is now available to download via the link below

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01 May 2012

Spring 2012 newsletter

Our spring 2012 newsletter is now available to download via the link below

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01 November 2011

Autumn 2011 newsletter

Our autumn 2011 newsletter is now available to download via the link below

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01 November 2010

Autumn 2010 newsletter

Our autumn 2010 newsletter is now available to download via the link below

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01 December 2009

Autumn 2009 newsletter

Our autumn 2009 newsletter is now available to download via the link below

PDF icon Autumn 2009 newsletter

01 December 2008

Autumn 2008 newsletter

Our autumn 2008 newsletter is now available to download via the link below

PDF icon Autumn 2008 newsletter

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