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Richmond Festive Sheep

December 2, 2012
Festive sheep painted black to promote the Swaledale Shepherd's Score

A festive black sheep decorated with glitter letters to promote the Swaledale Shepherd’s Score.

Living in Richmond I could not pass up the opportunity of participating in the Richmond Festive Sheep challenge. I collected an mdf template of a Swaledale sheep a few weeks ago and had to come up with an idea of how to decorate it on a festive theme. Olympic and Jubilee entries were also allowed into this year’s competition to decorate a sheep for display in local shop windows. The submission deadline was Friday 30th November for the switching on of the lights, which is a well-attended celebration.

The sheep form a trail around the market place, market hall and neighbouring side streets.So, wrapped in several layers, hat, scarf and gloves I ventured out on Friday evening to discover where my entry was located. You can find it in the mezzanine gallery in the market hall.

As you can see, I came up with the idea of painting the template black and entitling it Shepherd’s New Year Countdown in order to promote another traditional shepherd’s score. For posts about other scores see Teesdale Poetry Project and National Poetry Day posts categorised under ‘poetry’ and the Dances with Sheep page under ‘Poetry Pamphlets.’

A few years ago, while gathering poems for Dances with Sheep I came up with a modernised version of Baa Baa Black Sheep following a visit to the Black Sheep brewery at Masham:

Baa, baa, Black Sheep,

have you any ale?

Yes ma’am, yes ma’am

dark or pale?

One pint of Theakston’s

one pint of Square

and a bottle for the son-in-law

who lives down the Dale.

Square was the name given to an ale produced by the Black Sheep brewery who make their beers in square vats. It could also be a reference to the artist Mackenzie Thorpe who is famous for his square sheep.

The Richmond Festive Sheep exhibition runs throughout December. Visitors to the town can have fun spotting them and picking out their favourites.


From → Poetry

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