Home to the largest Benedictine community in Britain. This order of monks did
not settle in Ampleforth until the early 1800s, but can trace their history back
to Westminster Abbey in much earlier times.
Aysgarth Falls The falls, made up by a series of three cascades extending for some half mile on the River Ure in Wensleydale. The foaming waters rush headlong over great ledges between limestone walls hung with trees and bushes, the first falls is known as the upper falls and can be best viewed from a 16th Century bridge carrying the road over the river.
One of the North’s most
premier towns, the Minster in all it glory dominates the town and a tangle of
old streets, cobbled lanes and elegant terraces of Georgian & Victorian homes
make it a delight to the visitor. Over 300 buildings are listed for
Seen against the backdrop
of the Howardian Hills, the splendour of Castle Howard is all the more
astonishing. The largest house in Yorkshire, designed by Sir John Vanbrugh
this was his first house (his second was Blenheim Palace). The clerk of
works was Nicholas Hawksmore, a partnership of brilliance. It was started
in 1700 but by the time of completion in 1737, the 3rd Earl of Carlisle, who
commissioned it, Vanbrugh and Hawksmore were all dead. The total cost of
building was a then staggering £78,000. The house is set in over 1,000
acres of parkland, has two lakes and is home to a vast treasure of pictures and
Fountain Abbey (Declared a world heritage site)
majestic ruins of possibly the Greatest Abbey in England, stand in this scenic
valley of the River Skell. Just a few miles South West of Ripon.
Even today so much of the building is still visible. From very humble
beginnings, a rise to power then total Dissolution under Henry VIII. It
was from St Mary`s Abbey York, that the prior and some followers left to
establish a new Cistercian order here at Fountains in 1132. They started
to build and over the years the community grew in property, prosperity &
recruits. Unfortunately this power and wealth replaced the original Cistercian
ideals and was a great prize for Henry VIII during the Dissolution. He
sold it to Sir Richard Gresham in 1540. One can clearly see from the ruins
the picture of what life in a Monastic institution was like during the middle
ages. The tower stands a remarkable 168ft in height with the church
extending some 360ft. In 1738 William Aisdale who owned the adjoining
Studley Royal Estate purchased Fountains and continued to mould the two
together. Landscaping and gardening as he went along. Today the
Cistercian Abbey ruins are the largest in Britain blending in naturally with a
landscape of ornamental lakes, cascades, bridges, river walks and eye catching
vistas. A 500 head deer colony live in the deer park and at night the
whole area of the ruins are floodlit.
Harrogate Harrogate evolved as one of the most fashionable Spa's in Europe following the discovery, in 1571, of the first medicinal spring by William Slingsby. In the early days people bathed or drank waters bought to their lodgings in barrels, the first public baths was erected in 1842. The Victorian heritage now blends perfectly with a modern Spa town. It is a very stately place with numerous dignified hotels built of the dark local stone famous in the 19th century. This effect is softened by its location, spacious parks, great abundance of trees and lavish flower beds, especially in Harlow Car Gardens.
18th Century mansion planned by Robert
is situated in landscaped grounds completed by
in 1772 and set in rolling countryside.
One of the highest market towns in England. Known as the capital of Upper
Wensleydale. Set amongst a thriving farming area of outstanding beauty home to
thousands of sheep and cattle. A small town with broad cobbled streets where
local industries such as cheese making, pottery and rope making still survive.
Small shops offering local produce together with antique shops offer glimpses
of times gone by.
This museum is like no
other museum, the actual building is on the site of an archaeological dig, the
journey you take is around the actual remains below street level, exactly where
the old city of York was built
The spectacular remains of
the first Cistercian Abbey in Northern England. situated in the unrivalled peace
and serenity of a beautiful wooded valley on the banks of the River Rye.
sheltered from the moors rising above. Walter L`Espec granted this site in
the wilderness to a group of Cistercians in 1131. From these small
beginnings began a crusade which ended with the building of this Abbey.
Its grandeur outlined in the remains of the buildings. Completed before
the end of the 12th Century records indicate that under the Third Abbot (Aelred
1147-1167) the community consisted of 140 monks and over 500 lay brothers.
By the dissolution of the monasteries in 1539 this large community had dwindled
down to just 22 monks. The buildings are now looked after by English
Heritage. The Church Nave dates back to at least 1135 and the Choir is a
particularly fine example of 13th Century work.
small market town dating back to early Saxon times. We have the Crypt in
the Minster from circa 672 and a belief that the town name is based on a tribe
of people known as the Hreope who inhabited the area in pre Saxon times.
In local documents the town was recorded as Hrypis in 715 and as Rypum in the
year 1030. We can therefore safely establish that a settlement has been
here dating back over 1500 years. The town is dominated by the Cathedral
but the heart of the town is the rectangular market place with its dominating
90ft obelisk raised in 1781. One of the oldest houses in the town is
situated near one corner of the square. The house was built in the 13th
Century and the Wakeman or Night Watchman lived there.
Described by locals as big and breezy, this North sea resort town with its two
splendid bays is a fine combination of a ruined castle, nice hotels, boarding
houses, sands, terraced gardens, wave swept promenades and plenty of walks.
According to legend it was founded by a Norseman, we do know that it was burned
to the ground by another one Harold Harrada in 1066. A stylish Spa in the
17th & 18th Centuries which during the last 20 years has
lost much of its appeal to travelling holiday makers. The castle circa
1160 stands on a headland that was once the site of a British Camp and later a
Roman Signal Station. The splendid Marine Drive and Promenade were
completed in 1908 and follow the wide curve of the North Bay. The Parish
Church of St Mary`s was built in the 12th Century it was severely
damaged during the Civil War. It is the final resting place of Anne Bronte
who is buried in the churchyard. She came to the town in the hope that the
spa waters and bracing sea air would improve her health. Unfortunately she
died in Scarborough at the age of 29.
Situated just 12 miles from York and surrounded by picturesque countryside. The
Abbey was founded in 1069 by Monk Benedict of Auxerre and is built to Cathedral
proportions being 300 feet long and 55 feet wide. It is of course Norman in
design with 8 tall Norman arches and a superb large East window behind the High
Altar. The Abbey`s most famous feature is the 14th Century
Washington window which is to be found high up in the Quire. This celebrates the
life of John de Washington a Prior in the Abbey. Yes he can be traced to the
same family tree as George Washington. If you look closely at the window you
will see it bears the Washington family coat of arms which forms the model of
the present day American flag.
St Giles Church, Skelton
The church was originally built as an
outpost of York Minster. Legend has it that it was built of stone left
over from building the Minster. The church was restored during the 19th
Century and the atmosphere of the interior is more 19th Century
despite its architectural authenticity being of the early gothic design.
It does have a small original 13th century Bellcote
One of the best examples of English 18th Century landscape gardens. Sheets
of water, mature trees, several temples, a classical bridge, grotto, and rustic
buildings. The gardens offer a visual experience unequalled in Britain.
A taste of the classical ideas which gripped the 18th Century aristocrats.
The story of cheese making in the Yorkshire dales dates back to possible Roman
times. However it was Cistercian Monks from Jervaulx arriving here in the
12th Century who bought with them a knowledge of cheese making which
they used to produce a soft, blue veined cheese made from Wensleydale Ewes milk.
By the 17th Century most farmhouses had their own recipes which were
passed down from generation to generation. The first commercial creamery
in Hawes was set up in 1897. Then followed a history of high points and a
very low point reached in 1992 when the creamery was closed. However
within 6 months some ex managers a local businessman together with skilled help
from former workers re-opened for business. Today going from strength to
strength the creamery once again is proud to produce the real Wensleydale
Famed as one of the earliest and most important centres of Christianity in
England. In 657 St Hilda founded the Abbey for King Oswy of Northumbria in
thanks for his victory over the heathen Penda of Mercia. It was also the
setting for the Synod of Whitby in 664 who committed the English Church to the
Roman Rite rather than the Celtic one and also fixed the Precis date on which
Easter should be celebrated, the exact formulae which is still in use today.
Both men and women lived in the early Monastery, it is where Caedmon was
inspired to sing of creation. Destroyed by the Danes in 867 it was founded
again by the Benedictines in 1078. Continued to flourish until surrendered in
1539. From then on the buildings have slowly blown away, by 1830 the tower
had collapsed and in 1914 it was shelled by the German fleet. The oldest
part of the town is on the East cliff, with the new town under the West cliff,
dividing the two the River Esk. The old
port of Whitby
developed on the East bank, where ancient houses lean against each other and is
a muddle of cobbled streets and narrow alley ways. James Cook the explorer
lived in this area and of course Whitby became his home port
townscape of this walled city illustrates much of its nearly 2,000 years
history. York possesses in its Minster the largest medieval church in
Northern Europe, the general scale of its building is small and human.
Even today York seems more medieval than almost any other English town.
The compact core is a treasure house for anyone interested in history,
architecture or ancient crafts, and is best seen on foot. The Romans
called the place Eboracum, and built a fort in AD.71. Under the Angles,
York was capital of their Kingdom of Deira. King Edwin was baptised here
by Paulinus, who became the first Archbishop of York in 634. The Danes
captured and burnt York in 867 and it was their capital in England for nearly
100 years, they called it Jorvik and it is from this that the present name
derives. There is nothing left to see of Anglo Saxon and Danish York, but
the use of the word gate for street is a reminder that the Danes did settle
here. The Norman's found a thriving little trading centre and burnt it in
1069 during their frightful ravaging of the North, and then rebuilt the walls,
expanding them to take the present 263 acres. Medieval York is everywhere,
not least in the web of narrow streets. The Shambles and Stonegate are two
of the best preserved examples. Too the East of the Minster is the half
timbered St William's College. Three of the nine Guildhalls still survive.
All the city walls are medieval rebuilt on the Roman and Norman foundations in
the 13th Century. A 2.5 mile footpath on the walls gives a circular tour
of the city. In the middle ages, York was England's second city a great
religious and commercial centre. A lovely city with much to see and enjoy.
York Castle (Cliffords tower) In 1068 William
the Conquer built 2 Motte & Bailey castles in York. Both where later destroyed
by a Danish fleet helped by the people of York. Eventually William rebuilt the
two castles and the mound on which now stands Cliffords Tower became a part of
the main fortress. However except for the tower very little of the original
castle now exists.
The tower was built between 1245 &
1272 and has been the scene of many historical events. It is reported that the
rebel leader Robert Aske was allegedly hung from the walls in chains and starved
to death. The tower also played its part in the Civil War siege of York in
1644. Then between 1825 & 1935 it was used as a prison. But its most
infamous historical reference is the Jewish massacre of March 1190, when an
estimated 150 Jews, the entire Jewish Community of York, Died after
taking refuge in the Royal Castle.