4:16pm Friday 4th October 2013
IT was a case of third time lucky for Ingleton man Michael Coggins, who has been crowned the CLA Yorkshire dry stone walling champion.
Having entered the biennial competition twice before – and coming a close second two years ago – the 55-year-old won after impressing judges with ten metres of dry stone wall he built at a farm near Horton-in-Ribblesdale.
Collecting his award, Mr Coggins said: “I am absolutely thrilled to have finally won this competition.
I’ve been a waller for 27 years and this has been the only competition that I’ve ever really been interested in winning.”
He built the wall for farmer Mark Wilson at Gill Garth Farm, Selside. Standing on a precarious rock-edge, and measuring more than seven feet high, it took five days to complete and involved shifting between 18 and 20 tonnes of stone.
Despite the challenging terrain, judges were impressed with the exceptionally high build quality and the remarkably straight lines that Mr Coggin’s managed to achieve.
Aimed at preserving the county’s ancient craft of dry stone walling, the competition recognises and rewards the people behind the miles of distinctive walls that define Yorkshire’s famous landscapes.
Held in association with the Yorkshire Dry Stone Walling Guild, the competition is believed to be unique in Britain as it judges new or rebuilt walls in the countryside and is not a contest between wallers building temporary short stretches at agricultural shows.
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