We have fallen in love at the Gorgeous Cottages offices – and it’s with the cutest little Shetland Pony we have ever seen! His name is Alf, he’s just 28 inches high and we met his owner Hannah Russell recently at a Welcome to Yorkshire event. They live near Leyburn in the Yorkshire Dales and this is Hannah and Alf’s story:
About Little Alf
“Little Alf came to live with me in 2012 when he was just 7 months old. His dwarfism meant his previous owner could no longer keep him so I took him on and he started living with me in the stunning Yorkshire Dales.”
“Alf soon fitted in and it wasn’t long he was creating lots of havoc and sneaking in to my dad’s orchard to munch all his lovely vegetables…”
A quartet of magical books
Hannah started regularly blogging about Alf’s cheeky antics and he quickly became a hit (we love the pictures of Alf in and around the Yorkshire Dales). It didn’t take long for this writing to become a fully-fledged children’s book with Little Alf (of course) as the star!
“In October 2014 my first children’s book was published ‘The magical adventure of Little Alf – The Discovery of the Wild Pony’. After the first book was published I knew I wanted to write more and more books and now Little Alf has 4 children’s books published about him which include lots of magic and adventure!”
The Little Alf Shop
“This year in July 2017 I opened up the first Little Alf shop in Leyburn Market Town, I’ve always wanted a shop full of Little Alf products and this year we finally took the plunge, it’s been amazing since we opened and so lovely to meet so many visitors over the summer. Leyburn is a stunning place to visit with the cobbled town and the surrounding dramatic countryside.”
We definitely think the Little Alf shop in worth a visit if you are around Leyburn (which we quite agree with Hannah is absolutely gorgeous). Not only can you purchase the four children’s books there but you can even get your own cuddly Little Alf (super cute) and other goodies such as hoodies, t-shirts and bags!
Little Alf and Hannah have also just has their autobiography published and it sounds like quite a story. After all there aren’t many teenagers (and miniature horses) who have received an award from Princess Anne!
“The book is called ‘Little Alf – The true story of a pint sized pony who found his forever home’. It’s a memoir/autobiography based on mine and Little Alf’s life from the moment we met to present day and everything we have been up to over the past few years from meeting royalty to being royally told off….”
I think it’s fair to say Hannah and Alf have transformed each other’s lives for the better and I’m quite sure there are many more adventures still to come (including a Little Alf Trail around the Dales which will launched next year). Find out more about Little Alf here.
If you fancy visiting the Little Alf shop in Leyburn, here is a selection of family-friendly Gorgeous Cottages in the area.
A lovely, cosy (and pet-friendly) cottage for four with a pretty village location near Leyburn.
This traditional Dales cottage sleeps 6 and has gorgeous views across to Middleham Castle.
A stylish and spacious luxury cottage located in Middleham. Perfect for watching the racehorses that train in the village go by.
For more information on Yorkshire Dales Holiday Cottages, give the Gorgeous Cottages team a call on 01642 263 249.