Yorkshire is like heaven
Did you spot the mistake in the title?
There are two Yorkshires. Two very different Yorkshires.
- First there’s rural Yorkshire, much of it hilly. There’s the Yorkshire Dales, The Northern part of the Peak District and the Pennine hills connecting the two. There are also the North York Moors, the Howardian hills and the Yorkshire Wolds. Each of them with their own take on rugged beauty. There ate also flat areas, including the Vale of York and the Vale of Mowbray, either side of the Yorkshire wolds. So the geography of Yorkshire is a county of contrasts.
- The other Yorkshire is industrial. Much of the counties of South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire are built around what Blake called Dark Satanic Mills. Outside these counties there is industrialisation found in Hull and around Middlesbrough, which is inside the traditional Yorkshire boundary. But if you raise your eyes you will see contrast here. Much of the industrialisation is in valleys where there is a good water supply for the textile mills and engineering. The surrounding hills are as beautiful as anywhere in the world.
Yorkshire is an industrial county set inside a stunning rural county.
Politically the two Yorkshires could not be more different. Rural Yorkshire is predominantly conservative, Industrial Yorkshire is socialist, although there are pockets in both that go against the trend. Yorkshire is a county of contrasts.
A county of contrasts but also a county of unity. Being Yorkshire folk is something that transcends our differences. I hear occasional calls for Yorkshire independance, but my view is that we do not need it, because despite not having an independant assembly with the ability to raise taxes that Scotland and Wales have, Yorkshire is independent of the rest of the UK. Proudly independent. We squabble, we fight we disagree, often openly: But we are united, we are Yorkshire. We are in the UK, but not of the UK.
We are united by the weather, the same rain that powered the woolen mills is what gives the many hills their greenness and beauty. We have our share of sunshine too, but even then on the hill tops whe wind can be biting. The heights are wuthering.
So why is Yorkshire like heaven?
Because we are in the UK but not of it. We are physically part of the UK, physically part of England, but we are not of it, our values are different. Out fierce independance sees to that. Jesus told his disciples to be in the world but not of it. To have different set of values.
Because we are united. Yorkshire people meet outside Yorkshire and they are united in their pride of being from Yorkshire. Their politics may be very different but even where there is no uniformity there is unity. Sadly the church worldwide seldom shows this unity, despite Jesus praying that they be one. Christian people, we are one. I am not afer uniformity, I do not wish you to act like me, traditionalists, evangelicals, liberals, we don’t all have to be like you, we are not one because we worship the same way, we are one because we worship the same God. We belong to the kingdom of God.
The mistake in the title? The word like. Yorkshire is heaven.