Durham, in the north-east of England, is a fascinating county. The natural beauties are rivalled by the historical sites, for this has always been border country, subject to sudden raids from Scotland or, in earlier times, by the Vikings from across the North Sea.

In modern times the county has been divided, for political reasons, into two further counties of Gateshead and Tyne and Wear, but for convenience as well as history I am lumping them all together under Durham.

I hope you enjoy our visits to the county - though I am afraid that you won't be seeing any pictures of the famous Cathedral in Durham, thanks to the primitive attitude of the cathedral authorities towards photography and video.

A far friendlier attitude was experienced at Escomb, a tiny parish church that has been welcoming visitors since 675 AD, even if - shock! horror! - they come with cameras. It's well worth visiting, taking photographs and leaving donations to ensure that it keeps on welcoming visitors for another thousand years.