James Herriot’s Yorkshire is available for $40 (including postage and packing) from Guerilla Films, 35 Thornbury Road, Isleworth, Middlesex TW7 4LQ. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Fax: 0181 758 9364. An on-line ordering service is available at: http://www.u-net.com/~guerilla/.
You can visit Agatha Christie Country in Devon, Jane Austen Country in Hampshire, and Wordsworth Country in the Lake District. Each bit of England, it seems, is eager to pair itself with a famous son or daughter. Following the trend, Yorkshire has associated itself with James Herriot, the world’s best-loved veterinarian.
Herriot is the main character in author Alf Wight’s largely autobiographical novels about life as a rural veterinarian, which later served as the inspiration for the long-running BBC television series All Creatures Great and Small. Wight lived the majority of his life in Thirsk, a small town in the heart of rural Yorkshire, where he and a partner practised from their veterinary surgery at 23 Kirkgate.
Based on his best-selling travel book of the same name, the beautiful video James Herriot’s Yorkshire is the closest Herriot lovers will come to experiencing its splendour without actually being there. Narrated by Christopher Timothy, who portrayed Herriot in the BBC series, the film follows the Herriot trail through the countryside of Thirsk, Sutton Bank, Scarborough, York, and Harrogate.
The film itself is prefaced by a poignant tribute presentation by Timothy, who expresses his deep gratitude and respect for the late author. Wight, who died in February 1995, makes his last public appearance in the video.
The panoramic, wide-screen views of the breathtaking scenery featured in the video are sure to delight any viewer of James Herriot’s Yorkshire. But for those who have come to know and love the countryside portrayed in his novels and the television series, this video will be, as one American viewer fondly compared it, ‘like discovering a new chapter in your favourite Herriot book.’
Leigh Ann Berry