The general state of superfebrile anticipation surrounding this year’s Medieval Monkey’s charity monkeybiking event has crept up several notches beyond the theoretical maximum of ‘fever pitch’ and has Bankstone’s excitement-o-meter technicians cowering nervously behind hastily erected perspex screens as they bravely continue taking readings.

It is with some considerable trepidation, therefore, that we bring you the freshly arrived tidings that the Apocalypse Now themed garden party at Sheriff Hutton Castle on the afternoon of Saturday 7th July is very much on!

Our kind host the Sheriff is having letters sent out to every household in the village demanding that its inhabitants attend the castle grounds between 3 and 5pm, there to consume a repast consisting principally of tea, cakes and cucumber sandwiches – on pain of hassockage (an ancient seigneurial sanction too gruesome to delineate more frankly here).

This should ensure a large crowd is on hand to welcome the arrival of the Medieval Monkeys cavalcade sometime around ten to five, following a long succession of mechanical failures, wrong turns and general haphazardage along the way.

In the unlikely event the convoys rolls in any earlier, its participants may catch the once-in-a-lifetime spectacle of a giant yellow YAA helicopter setting down alongside the castle – quite possibly with a BBC camera crew in tow (not literally – that might be dangerous) as it gathers footage for the next series of Hell Cop Heroes.

So that should be quite an afternoon!

Separately, Bankstone News has received confirmation that YAA mascot Sir Bernard de Bere (aka Bernie the Bear) will once again be joining us for the two days of Medieval Monkeys, making friends and influencing people (gesturally at least) at each of the historically monumental stops along the route.

Sadly, however, Bankstone News has also learned that, following some unpleasantness connected with a so-called ‘mascot race’ at Wetherby Races, Sir Bernard recently took the decision to retire from his public duties and is only coming out of retirement for the weekend of the 7-8 July as a special favour to all his medieval monkey biking friends (asking only that the town crier refrain from shouting too loudly and clanging that bloody bell all the time).

So this, it seems, will be Sir Bernard’s swan song.

Is it proper that a bear should sing like a swan, you may ask. If Florence of the Machines is allowed – indeed positively encouraged – to sing like a seal (note “a seal” not as in Mr Klum), Bankstone News can see no earthly reason why not. Wail on, Sir Bernard, we say. It will be an honour to ride out with you this one last time. You will not soon be forgotten!


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