WHAT a treat it's been to experience that most rare of British occurrences – a hot, sunny bank holiday weekend.

UK tradition dictates that the minute a bank holiday is on the horizon, so too are rain clouds.

So how lovely it’s been to get out there and enjoy some beautiful summer weather over the bank holiday and into this week.

And of course, in my completely biased opinion, there’s no better place to be in the sunshine than North Yorkshire.

That stands whatever the weather, but there’s something particularly life-affirming about crossing the North York Moors or Dales under a vivid blue sky that turns the landscapes into a technicoloured treat for the eyes.

The Moors heather suddenly becomes impossibly purple and the Dales stonewalled pastures and hills turns a particular shade of vibrant green not found anywhere else.

Even the white of lambs and sheep is brighter than the fluffiest clouds – if you don’t look too closely at the mess they tend to make on themselves.

Under a bright blue sky, the birds seem to sing that bit louder and the unmistakable silhouettes of raptors look that bit sharper when framed by a bold primary colour instead of a dull grey.

The transformative and restorative powers of sunshine, fresh air and a quiet appreciation of the natural beauty of our countryside should not be underestimated.

And with lockdown restrictions relaxed, there's no better time to get a life-affirming shot of vitamin D – and no better place to do it than God’s Own Country.