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Competition aims to find Yorkshire's best waller

[Friday 24 March 2006]

Two expert wallers will be trekking up hill and down dale this summer judging miles of dry stone walls in Yorkshire's most unusual craft competition.

Dry stone walls; an integral feature of the Yorkshire Dales
Dry stone walls; an integral
feature of the Dales

Dry stone walls are an integral part of the Dales landscape, forming part of its rich history stretching back over hundreds of years; now, the hunt is on across Yorkshire to find the man, or woman, who stands head and shoulders above the rest in the dry stone walling stakes.

Held every two years in association with the Yorkshire Dry Stone Walling Guild, the competition is thought to be unique in Britain because it judges new or rebuilt walls in the countryside, and is not a contest between Wallers simultaneously building temporary walls at a show.

Practitioners see walling as an art form and marks are awarded for use of local style, impact on the landscape, tidiness and difficulty of terrain; the winner will receive an engraved glass walling stone.

The current holder is Dales' sheep farmer Stan Bargh of Chapel-le-Dale, whose lifelong mission was to rebuild many miles of walls on the steep and rocky fell sides of his Springcote Farm near Ingleborough.

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