THE honour of being the exact geographical centre of Yorkshire has gone to a village near York despite similar claims from nearby parishes.

The Ordnance Survey used its own detailed records of the county’s boundary and the help of a computer programme to come up with a field in the village of Hessay as the dead centre of Yorkshire.

However, the Yorkshire Ridings Society, which promotes all matters Yorkshire immediately pointed out that a similar operation using a computer program four years earlier had given the honour to Cattal, a hamlet a few miles west of Hessay.

Barkston Ash, near Selby, also claims the honour, on the grounds that the ash tree at the centre of the village which gives it its name, is at the centre of Yorkshire.

The issue was on the agenda of the latest parish council meeting at Hessay, though members and residents decided not to officially mark their position at the centre of the county.

Chairman Mark Barratt said: “It’s on the agenda just to see if the residents of the village want to celebrate or mark it.”

He said he understood the centre of the county was once thought to be Moor Monkton Church, though he was not interested in creating a “storm in a teacup” over which parish held the honour.

Coun Roger Hildreth said: “I think we want to be cautious at to what we do because if it changes, and we have paid for a sign to say we are the centre of Yorkshire, we are going to look very silly.”

Meanwhile, the Yorkshire Ridings Society has declined, so far, to support either the 2012 or the 2008 Cattal decision and has called for a definitive solution.

It has also suggested the centre may be moving about, or that the matter should be decided on a yearly basis between Cattal and Hessay.