IT'S the great escape ... sheep from the moors around Marsden have enjoyed wandering into the village for decades.
Farmers have put up fences and laid down cattle grids in an attempt to stop them getting free, but they are still often seen chasing a rogue flock through the village.
Now it is reported the favourite escape routes for wandering sheep involve both brains and brawn.
Brainy sheep have been spotted rolling over cattle grids to get to the other side and make their bid for freedom.
Other reports suggest more athletic sheep can jump 5ft fences and even squeeze through gaps of less than 8in wide.
Clr Dorothy Lindley said she had seen sheep using the roll-over escape method for some months now.
She said: "They always seem to find a way to escape from where they should be.
"But it is a serious problem because they get into the village and make a real mess of people's gardens. One lady told me how her garden had been devastated by sheep.
"It is also a worry that they may get loose on to the road and cause an accident.
"They are often on Manchester Road and, even if you are driving carefully, if a sheep runs out in front of you it could be serious.
"The sheep don't seem to be scared of much either.
"You can shout at them and even bark like a dog and they just look at you as if to say `who do you think you are?'
"What we really need is more fencing to stop them, but they would probably find another way out before long."
In March, the Colne Valley Tree Society was forced to build a two-mile security fence to stop the sheep grazing near Butterley Reservoir above Marsden.
The sturdy new fence should keep the sheep from 8,000 newly planted trees - at least until they find a new way to get past, through or over it.
* In the UK today there are approximately 30m sheep - believed to be descendants of those brought over by the Romans.
* Sheep are dipped to kill common parasites and prevent the spread of sheep scab.
* Sheep milking is becoming more popular in the UK. A ewe can yield up to 173 litres of milk in 12 weeks.
* People born in Chinese years of the sheep - 1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991 and 2003 - are said to be charming, elegant and artistic. A bit of a worrier, they have a tendency to complain. Famous "sheep" include Prunella Scales and John Major.
* Dolly the cloned sheep became a scientific sensation when her birth was announced in 1997. Her relatively early death in February 2003 fuelled the debate about the ethics of cloning.