MORE breaking bee bole news: “Having read your most informative article on bee boles (D&S Times, April 2), I thought that your readers might be interested in this photograph of old bee boles in our garden in Worton,” says Dr Michael Waldman.

Bee boles are holes built into south facing walls for a skep – a domed bee basket – to be placed in so that a householder could harvest the wax and honey. Bee boles nearly always date from before the 1850s when the timber hive was invented.

Worton is a small village in Wensleydale, and only a year ago in this column, we noted how many residents in times past had inscribed their initials in the lintels over their front doors. Worton Hall’s carving is “Anno Domine 1600 AB”, with AB being Anthony Besson; the Victoria Arms has “G 1698 M” over it, while Summer Tree House on an eye-catching corner of the A684 has “MS 1729” above its door and a something of a large disclaimer written looking down on the road: “MICHAEL SMITH MECHANICK BUT HE THAT BUILT ALL THINGS IS GOD Heb.3”.

In true Worton tradition, the bee bole is also inscribed.

“The initials 'W.H.' engraved on the square stone on the right hand side are believed to be those of William Henry Linton, an architect who drew up new plans and had the house rebuilt for his family from a small row of old ruined cottages in 1906,” says Dr Waldman.

“Old photographs show the boles were already present at that time and covered in a strong growth of ivy, meaning that they are at least Victorian in age.”