Penguin Putnam Life for the Yorkshire Dales school inspector is about to become not unlike the rambling hills of the Dales themselves-up and down and all over the place. After a routine school inspection culminates with a teacher being forced into early retirement, Gervase is left feeling his year hasn't begun on the right foot. Then come the news that his local school is closing down, the accidental demolition of a historical church, and a knee injury! And still Gervase gallantly retains his sense of humour throughout, making this a charming and thoroughly entertaining read.
Blackwell North Amer In Up and Down in the Dales life for the Inspector of English is always hectic. Some of the events, like the nativity plays at Christmas or 'little jobs' for Dr. Gore, come around the annual calendar like clockwork; others are totally unexpected and can cause happiness or concern in equal parts. Now in his fourth year as a schools inspector Gervase Phinn continues to visit schools within his area of Yorkshire, from the little primary schools in the Yorkshire Dales to the inner-city schools with their often mulish adolescent pupils. At least he can leave school affairs behind him when he goes home each evening to Peewit Cottage and his lovely wife, Christine, who is expecting their first child. That is, until their own village school is threatened with closure and Gervase finds himself on the opposite side of the argument from Christine. Some things, however, don't change: Mrs. Savage roars, Connie rants and Gervase's colleagues in the office play verbal ping-pong. The children he meets in the primary schools continue to steal the limelight, and their contrived innocence never fails to endear.