IT was standing room only in St Mary’s Church at Bolton on Swale for last week’s funeral of Cllr Michael Heseltine, the long-serving councillor for Scorton and Richmondshire.

Spectator reckons there were 400-plus there to pay their respects and hear the many tributes to a man who took his local government duties very seriously.

The former leader of North Yorkshire County Council, Cllr John Weighell, was among those that gathered there.

He recalled that in almost 40 years of service on the county council in a number of senior positions, the former schoolmaster at Scorton Grammar never threw anything away.

Not long after being elected to the county council back in 1977, Cllr Heseltine’s modest bungalow in the village quickly filled up with piles of council documents and papers. As did the garage. And then, in due course, the garden shed.

Eventually a second garden shed had to be purchased - and that too was filled.

Cllr Heseltine had already decided not to stand in next May’s council elections before his sad passing in December.

Perhaps he couldn’t accommodate another shed in the garden.

Darlington and Stockton Times: Alf Wight, better known as James Herriot

IT is hard to think of anything more English - or indeed Yorkshire - than the gentle country adventures of James Herriot - or Alf Wight as the Thirsk vet was known in real life.

So the fact that the Russians have taken him so much to their hearts that a major Moscow museum is now staging an exhibition dedicated to his work is remarkable to say the least.

It also shows, perhaps, that borders really mean nothing when it comes to the genuinely kind and good.