LOVE Local Business: Hoorah for the Gazette & Herald campaign.

During lockdown we got all our supplies from the independent food shops in Malton and Huttons Ambo village store. For two full months our household provisions were generously delivered to the door by baker, butcher, deli, fishmonger, greengrocer, pet shop, et al, and an event caterer based in town brought many a delicious meal at the weekends.

My heartfelt thanks to everyone who helped us. You know who you are, but I am resisting the temptation to name, because Malton is so rich in food shops that my regret is not having been able to order from each one. I am, however, going to identify a non-food shop - Kemps in Malton - which had to be closed, but by offering to post orders, enabled us to send lovely gifts to family and friends far away, some of whom were ill with coronavirus and having a really tough time.

As we emerge from lockdown into a new normal, I intend to continue making the most of my shopping. Rather than dash in and out of a big store, I will take my time. I will go round the shops, choose cuts of meat and the freshest fish, pick my own fruit and vegetables, find new ingredients and allow myself to be amazed at what I discover.

Our independent shops have gone above and beyond to help us all. They are worthy of our support in every way and I am sure we will treasure them all the more in the future.

Emma Brooksbank, Malton

Make voice heard

IT seems the antics of one politician has taken over the news headlines allowing one very important factor to slip under the radar.

Despite all coronavirus legislation and briefings there are still Bills going through Parliament. One very important one is the Agricultural Bill. This bill is a disgrace in that in the rush to sign up trade agreements following Brexit, it has the potential to allow any foodstuffs into the UK from any country in the world farmed to any standard, regardless of the high standards we employ in this country.

The Government is aware of the concerns of the farming industry but is simply not prepared to ensure the legislation includes provision to ensure we do not import sub-standard produce simply saying we have a choice not to buy. This is, of course, ridiculous.

If, as expected, the economy crashes, many people will be struggling badly and if they have a choice between buying food they can afford or not eating they will have to buy what they can afford to feed their families and try not to worry about what it actually is they are eating.

The Government is well aware of the concerns of the agricultural industry, thousands of people are signing petitions and writing to their MPs. Our MP Kevin Hollinrake is, as usual, towing the party line and failed to support amendments to ensure the quality of food imports despite the fact he purports to represents us.

If you feel this is wrong and want your voice heard please email Mr Hollinrake and never forget our MPs are elected by us to represent us, and if they do not do this they can be thrown out at the next election. I suggest a look online to examine your MP’s voting record could be beneficial before making your choice.

S Warriner, Lockton

Henry - a true hero

I WAS pleased to read the article in the Gazette & Herald about the late Henry Flintoff who was awarded the George Cross in 1944 for helping a farmer who was being attacked by a bull in Farndale.

The farmer whose life was saved by Henry was my late father, John Atkinson.

I was born in 1946, some two years after the bull attack, but my parents told me about this and they believed that Henry did save my father’s life. Furthermore, if the attack had been fatal then I would not have been born.

Since reading the article I have been in touch with a longstanding elderly family friend who now lives in Sacriston, in County Durham. Betty was an evacuee in Farndale in 1944 and she remembers the attack clearly and the fear it caused.

My father was a typical Dales farmer of the era, complete with flat cap and studded shirt collar. He was a character straight out of the All Creatures Great and Small books by James Herriot.

In 1946 my parents, together with my late brother, Edward, then aged five, and myself as a baby, moved to a farm at Lastingham.

It was there my father sadly died as a result of a tractor accident in 1973. But he was spared to have a further 27 years because of the bravery of 13-year-old Henry Flintoff. Henry truly deserved the award of the George Cross.

Rosamund Dyson, Scarborough