BRING out your old bikes, baskets, rusty farm tools and lumpy brown furniture, that's the plea from the makers of the new All Creatures Great and Small TV series.

They want people to tip out their attics, barns, cupboards and sheds to reveal the vintage treasures they need to make the new series of the award winning show as authentic as possible.

As one of the most popular new shows in the past Covid-19 blighted year the Channel 5 hit is starting to film again in North Yorkshire. But because car boot sales, second hand and antique shops are closed their usual go to places to source old and ancient props are not open. So they're hoping instead to rally the public to help.

Production Designer Jacqueline Smith said: "Finding props for a period drama always requires a lot of hunting and research. It’s tough at the best of times. Lockdown is adding another level of challenge to the job. Unfortunately the local DIY superstore’s 1930’s section is very badly stocked.

"So we wondered if the local community might have any vintage treasure tucked away in a barn or attic or gently rusting in a field?

"We’re looking for props which would have been made before 1938 and be in general use at the time; carts, farming tools or machinery, rakes, threshers, barrels, milkchurns, barrows, horse tack, coils of old rope and tarpaulins.

"We are also looking for bicycles, baskets, kitchenalia, oil lamps, knobs and knockers, light switches and lumpy brown furniture."

Set Decorator James Gray said they would be really grateful to hear from people with items from the era when the Herriot books were set between the two world wars. Not only do the production teams have the main veterinary surgery and house to kit out, there are the shop windows of the fictitious town of Darrowby which in the original books and TV series was based on Herriot's home town of Thirsk and in the current series is in Grassington.

James added: "We can find crockery and cutlery easily enough for the house interiors, it’s the things that people tend to throw away because they think they have no value that we struggle with, like potato mashers, whisks, towels, curtains and rugs. Sofas and armchairs from the interwar period are also hard to find as many shops are not allowed to sell them due to fire regulations and they have been seen as frumpy and uncomfortable so have been skipped."

They're particularly keen to kit out a pantry for housekeeper Mrs Hall which in the first series was a closed door because they just couldn't trace the items they needed. "This is going to be a thing of beauty because she is a real homemaker. We need anything you would find in a 1930s pantry, including bottles, tins, food, boxes, bags, packaging and pickling and preserving jars. We can’t use new Kilner jars because the shape has changed and they now have a glass lid. The old ones are straighter with metal lids and being authentic is really important,"added James.

The All Creatures Great and Small books, written by Thirsk vet Alf Wight created probably the most famous veterinary in the world, James Herriot. Over 60 million copies of the books have been sold across the globe.

The most recent TV series was originally offered to the BBC but it wasn't taken up, instead Channel 5 backed the series which has been premiered across the globe.

Alf Wight's son and daughter Jim Wight and Rosie Page, from Thirsk, have welcomed the new series.

They said: "We have had wonderful feedback from many and various people, from all walks of life, telling us how they had derived great comfort from watching series one in these stressful Covid times. We are very hopeful that Series two will be equally uplifting and entertaining, and we are greatly looking forward to seeing it."

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