I WAS recently asked which pub in the Richmond constituency was my favourite.

Of course, that’s an impossible question. There are so many good hostelries hereabouts and my family and I have a number we particularly enjoy visiting.

And I have to confess that, as yet, I haven’t visited every pub in the constituency so that’s another reason to withhold final judgment!

But I feel I have to mention one pub – The Bull at West Tanfield – because it is your choice, not mine.

At last month’s Great Yorkshire Show it was announced that The Bull had been voted the best pub in the county in an online poll run by the tourism agency Welcome to Yorkshire. And that followed it being a runner-up in the 2014 and 2015 polls. Clearly not a flash in the pan then.

A visit was overdue so last week I called in with a friend for a meal to find out what all the fuss was about. It was well worth the trip to the southern-most pub in the southern-most village in the constituency.

West Tanfield is a most beautiful community and The Bull has a prime spot by the bridge over the River Ure with a superb bankside beer garden (incidentally, the River Ure at this point forms the boundary between the Richmond constituency and Julian Smith’s Skipton and Ripon constituency).

Before enjoying some excellent fish and chips and a chat with landlady Gill Richardson we realised that our visit happily coincided with the first event of the Turner on the Ure 2016 Festival – which marks the stay in the area by the great British landscape painter JMW Turner in August 1816. The festival has been organised by the Bull’s landlord Philip Spellacy.

The St Nicholas Singers were giving a celebratory concert in the nearby St Nicholas Church, a super setting to hear works by Handel, Bach and Purcell and English poetry. We were lucky enough to catch one half of the concert. I couldn’t escape Parliament entirely as I listened to a recital of Wordsworth’s poem, Upon Westminster Bridge!

The festival continues this weekend and next week with a series of special events, talks and activities in the village, Masham and Jervaulx Abbey. See turner ontheure2016 for more details.

The largely fine weather of the last fortnight has been ideal for getting out and about in the constituency and last week we took our two small daughters (aged five and three) on their first ‘proper’ walk in the Keld, Thwaite and Muker area of upper Swaledale.

They loved it.

Our circuitous route briefly touched on the Coast to Coast Walk which readers may recall I am campaigning to have designated a National Trail to ensure it gets the status, maintenance and promotion it deserves.

Since launching the initiative a couple of months ago the level of support has been gratifying from many of the dozens of parish councils on the route and my fellow MPs whose constituencies the walk passes through – including Rory Stewart (Penrith and The Border) and Jamie Reed (Copeland).

I will seek a debate about the Coast to Coast Walk in Parliament when the House returns after the summer break.