Legends, tall stories and old myths are in demand for a special project aimed at entertaining visitors to the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
Whether it’s a different version of the mystery of Bartle, who’s effigy gets burnt every year as part of the West Witton Feast, or the terrifying Barguest, the saucer-eyed wolf creature that lived in Trollers Gill, the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA) would like to hear from anyone who has a tale to tell – something that makes their village or dale different from the others.
The stories will be used by local artist Ian Scott Massie as part of an exhibition of paintings, prints, poetry and stories about places in the Dales.
The exhibition will be staged in July next year (2013) in a disused church in Wensleydale.
The Distinctly Dales project is working with local people and businesses in the National Park and in the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Beauty (AONB)) to identify and develop the special qualities of their communities and show how they can attract visitors and tempt them to stay longer – so boosting the local economies.
Stuart Parsons, the YDNPA’s Member Champion for Promoting Understanding, said: “The project hopes to use local stories to bring the Dales to life in the minds of visitors with the ultimate aim of encouraging them to explore the tales and the immediate locality of their bed and breakfast, campsite or hotel further – keeping them in the National Park for longer.
“The project will make a collection of the stories, myths and legends available to businesses in and around the National Park and the AONB so communities can really get involved in drawing in a sustainable group of visitors to explore their local village or surrounding dale.”
Local marketing consultant Susan Briggs from the Tourism Network has been commissioned to help with the Distinctly Dales Project.
Anyone who would like to feed into the growing collection of myths, legends and anecdotes we have found can visit the YDNPA website’s sustainable tourism pages and look up Distinctly Dales, where you will be able to send us your tales.
More details of Ian Scott Massie’s exhibition are available at http://www.ianscottmassie.com/blog.html.