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Discover James Herriot's Yorkshire on a tailor made location tour

The popularity of the latest TV adaptation of All Creatures Great and Small, based on the experiences of a Yorkshire veterinary surgeon in the 1940s, has brought to life the beauty of the Yorkshire countryside for a whole new generation of viewers. Why not follow in the footsteps of James Herriot on one of our tailor-made location tours?

World_of_James_Herriot_-_Copy.jpgThe World of James Herriot in Thirsk

James Herriot is England’s most famous vet, whose home was in the picturesque town of Thirsk, situated between the North York Moors National Park and the Yorkshire Dales. James Herriot was the pen name of Alf White, who became famous through the incredibly popular ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ books that he wrote. These were first made into a television series and films in the 1970s and have recently been adapted again.

The home and surgery where he lived and worked is now ‘The World of James Herriot’, a multi award winning visitor attraction that has been recreated to look as it did in the 1940s. Visitors can step back in time to experience life when James Herriot was a vet in Yorkshire, see the Austin 7 car he drove, step onto the TV set and even try their hand at being a vet.

North_York_Moors_explore_yorkshire_-_copy.jpgThe North York Moors

Thirsk is the perfect starting point for a tour of North Yorkshire, nestled as it is between the North York Moors and the Yorkshire Dales, two spectacular National Parks, packed with fascinating places of interest.

Askrigg_with_hill_of_Addleborough.jpgAskrigg with Addleborough hill in the background

The original TV series was largely filmed in the northern part of the Yorkshire Dales, in and around Wensleydale and Swaledale, whereas the new series was filmed further south, around Nidderdale. Grassington in Wharfedale is the setting for the fictional town of Darrowby in the new series, while Askrigg in Wensleydale was used in the original series. It is wonderful visiting these picturesque places and getting a feel for the dramatic landscape and pretty villages where James Herriot lived and worked.

Remake_of_All_Creatures_Great_and_Small_filmed_in_Grassington__North_Yorkshire__11_-_Copy.JPGGrassington is the latest setting for Darrowby

Some of the many locations in the original TV series that can be seen in Wensleydale include Wensley Church, where James and Helen’s wedding took place, the outside of Skeldale House in Askrigg, now a bed and breakfast, and the Kings Arms Pub in the same village, which featured as Darrowby’s Drovers Arms.


Of course, Wensleydale is also famous for its delicious cheese, and no visit would be complete without a visit to a creamery to see the cheese being handcrafted by master cheese-makers.

Hawes_Wensleydale_Creamery_-_copy.jpgWensleydale Creamery in Hawes

As well as enjoying the rolling countryside, and the spectacular views made famous by the TV series, a visit to historic Richmond is a must. Described as one of the prettiest towns in England, Richmond is famous for its ancient castle, cobbled marketplace and narrow streets, known as wynds. A climb to the top of castle keep will reward visitors with a panoramic view of the town and surrounding Swaledale.

Richmond_Castle_and_River.jpgRichmond Castle and River Swale

James Herriot was inspired in part by Richmond when he created the fictional town of Darrowby, and part of the set from the original TV series is on display at the Richmondshire Museum in the town, recreating the authentic look of a veterinary surgery from the 1940s.

While much of the two TV series of All Creatures Great and Small were filmed in the Yorkshire Dales, the real James Herriot’s practice stretched as far as the east coast of Yorkshire. Here, evocative seaside towns and villages, such as Whitby, Runswick Bay and Robin Hoods Bay, draw visitors from all over the world.

Remake_of_All_Creatures_Great_and_Small_filmed_in_Grassington__North_Yorkshire__28.JPGThe Drovers Arms in the new series is in Grassington

A short drive south is the magnificent walled city of York, founded by the Romans and famous for its incredible Gothic Minster. A popular tourist destination in its own right, James Herriot fans shouldn’t miss the nearby Yorkshire Museum of Farming, which is home to much of the contents of the real James Herriot’s original surgery.

Alf_Wight_at_Door_of_23_Kirkgate.jpgAlf White - the real James Herriot

If you or your group would like to enjoy a tailor-made tour of Yorkshire, following in the footsteps of James Herriot, please do contact our friendly team. As well as including many of the sights and landmarks associated with the TV series and films, you can enjoy the finest accommodation to suit your budget and delicious meals to meet your tastes and preferences.

For more information about some of the many other tailor-made location tours we offer, click here.

All photos © Herriot Country, World of James Herriot and Channel 5 TV.

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