Tour De Yorkshire: why Addingham has done itself proud

Powerwalking though Addingham the other day in the sunshine I marvelled at the creativity the locals have put into making the town so special for the Tour De France, which whizzes through not once, but twice in two days time.  I knew then I wanted to mark the occasion with a post of some kind, but what…?  Coloured bikes amongst plants is hardly sexy or appealing to anyone who doesn’t give a rip about either.  This kind of event… the kind people go ‘nuts’ about… I’m normally the person who doesn’t… but this… it’s got a real momentum and though I care not for the bikes, the local spirit of ‘we will do this excellently’ IS what grabs my attention. I LOVE it!!

The Bunting!

This week was already stretched and any time taking photos was going to be with my daughter in tow possibly searching for any number of the 23 bikes hidden in the town for a local competition.  I captured what I could (most of them on a grey day too just like it!).  Uploading these I settled for a post simply showcasing one ‘very Yorkshire’ towns’ effort for one of the biggest sporting events in the world.

The Addingham Garden Friends, in particular, have done themselves proud (I didn’t know they existed till this week!), not to mention the local businesses.  So here, on the penultimate eve of The Tour De France, Grand Depart 2014, are a few little moments from a beautifully quaint town near Ilkley, called Addingham.  Enjoy!

P1040183 The Primary School Bunting Little Back Street Eye SpyCutest Knitted Bunting One of the 23 hidden bikes Town House No Bike is Immune!Ducks CrossingSweet PeasThe Olive Branch Tea-Towel Bunting!PYO bike and veg plot! Succulents P1040321An English RoseLuxury CottagesOur Cow Bells from The Fleece

So many Spotty Bikes!

Quite a spectacle don’t you think?!  Interesting to see how we all celebrate things in different ways; all wonderfully unique!  Here’s to a great Tour De Yorkshire!  Has your town hosted the Tour De France?  What kind of crazy went on there?

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Top 5 Tips for buying Christmas presents well!

“I just don’t know where to start”… A lady said this to me recently and I became aware that for some people, the task of getting presents under the tree for 24th December is as scary as bungee jumping is for others!
Wherever you are on the Christmas present journey, here’s a few tips that might come in handy. As an advocate for shopping locally, this post is naturally in favour of putting money back into our communities as we spend!
The Olive Branch, Addingham

Beautiful Christmas window at The Olive Branch, Addingham

Dare to try something new!
Your dare should you choose to accept, is to go in shops you never normally do; return to ones you’ve not darkened the doors of for a while.  I recently bought a handbag in a local shop I had no intention what-so-ever in purchasing, but window shopping turned into walking inside and discovering that in fact, the shop had changed a lot since I last went in (years ago) and actually most of it would make fantastic Christmas presents!  My point is, you may be pleasantly surprised.
Fit the person to the present! (Not the present to the person.)
Yes, I really did just say that.  Wherever you have a lot of presents to buy, make a start by finding presents first then asking ‘who will that fit?’  Yes, once you are down to the last few you need to be more selective and find presents to fit people, but starting this way should help you get a few under your belt and that feeling of ‘have made a start’ is only a good thing!
Use your Social Media
Most shops these days advertise their offers and promotional days on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.  So, be aware of your local shops activity by following them on social media then go shopping on ‘said’ day or get them to put whatever you want aside!
Your Country needs you!
You live in the city and your local shops are the high-street brands… What then?  I say shop in favour of your country. Get to know great brands/suppliers who are producing their goods in your county.  A great example in the UK is Boden who are full of fun and quirkiness and the quality is second to none… When you buy Boden, you know it’s going to last!
Second, adopt a local smaller community if you can… I used to shop, eat and workout in Ilkley long before I ever lived here; invest somewhere and it will return the favour in more ways than one.
Make your spend count for others
Buy from places that are doing something for the greater good!  I have bought gifts for family from TOMS this year because I love their brand values and ethos.  Every pair of shoes bought buys a pair for someone in need of a pair in a deprived country-amazing!
One last thing…. If you are one of those people who can somehow wait till 2 weeks before then just go out and manage to nail all your presents on one day, I salute you… Seriously! Respect!
Love to hear your tips and suggestions bloggers – how do you buy?
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