Max and Vicky Hardcastle have a daydream. One day, they'll sell their cramped city-centre antiques shop and the overflowing upstairs flat and relocate to the beautiful Yorkshire Dales. If they could only find the perfect place to house both family and business, then that fantasy might become a reality...When a smallholding in a remote Dales village comes on the market, it seems like the answer to their prayers. Bullpen Farm might need 'some renovation', but it has an orchard, outbuildings and all the charm they've dreamt of. Before long, the Hardcastles find themselves the proud owners of a collection of ramshackle buildings and the newest members of a close-knit community which seems to have more than its fair share of eccentrics. From the antics of the antiques trade to the uproarious incidents of village life, it turns out that rural living isn't quite as tranquil as they'd imagined!
Max Hardcastle was born in the old West Riding of Yorkshire, just before the outbreak of the Second World War. He started collecting antiques at an early age, hoarding his treasures - including a five-foot stuffed crocodile - in a disused hen house, known ever after as the 'junk hut'. After National Service and a brief period working for an engineering company, Max and his family heard the call of the Yorkshire Dales, where they bought a cottage, hung out their sign - Bullpen Antiques - and made a happy living for many years. Max and his family now live in Leyburn, North Yorkshire, with two dogs, two ponies and an ever-fluctuating population of hens, ducks and pigeons. His only regret is that he no longer has contents of his treasured 'junk hut'.
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