And New Year’s Day, once again . . . whew!

These images from Stephanie Atkinson of this morning’s great clear-up of the square remind us of last year’s similar images. Thanks Stephanie!

Today the diary turns the corner into another year. Stephanie, who is always up early to walk her dogs, captured an image or two last year during and after the cleanup, which started the diary on its way. Actually, we could blithely feature the same images as last year, and few would be the wiser! So life goes on, and that’s part of the point of the diary, really.

Later today there will be lovely, community-minded revelry in the pubs, as traditional music swings through the air on waves of cheerfulness, as everyone pretends not to have a sore head, or perhaps as the hair of the dog cuts back through into a physical reminiscence of the night before.

Also, later today, for a change, we’ll publish another entry, with a view to the future in 2020. And then, after a dedicated year of diarising, these pages will fall silent for a while, until the announcement that the ‘book of the blog’ is back from the presses! Look out for that from about mid-January, I hope. It will be strange to be scrabbling around finessing everything into book format, and not actually confiding much more about the process, or anything else for that matter, to the diary, but I’m sure we’ll all cope.

As more than one reader has commented, yes, I shall feel quite bereft without the delightful daily task to concentrate my mind. But for the next weeks, anyway, I shall hope to fill that void with excitement about the ‘blook.’

See you all around the houses!


  1. Congratulations Larry. It is an achievement to be proud of and a reminder of the resilient community we live in. Happy New Year and I look forward to seeing the book

  2. I’m going to miss this diary so much! It has become something of a morning ritual with my first cup of tea of the day, to read the diary entry and smile.

    Thank you Larry for your dedication and commitment to this project. I will certainly be getting a copy of the printed version. You’ve created something special. I already knew I was lucky to have grown up in and come back to live in the ‘Dale to raise my own family, but your words have confirmed just how lucky we all are! Well done and enjoy your well-earned diary rest 🙂

  3. Thank you Larry. I only found your Allendale blog a couple of months ago and I have enjoyed getting to know your charming part of Northumberland since. When I first visited Allendale in October ’19 I was enchanted by the area. I never imagined just how much goes on out of sight. I will certainly be back in Spring.

    Thank God for places like Allendale!

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