Had a lovely afternoon at Fountains Abbey, near Ripon. Really nice cafe/restaurant. Typical National Trust shop and entry price! I thought £13.50 was rather steep for entry to say the least. Very keen to get you to join the Trust but I will not ever do so whilst they allow FOX HUNTING on their land. It disgusts me!
In 1132, 13 monks came here to start a simpler life. Over 400 years later, when Henry VIII demanded the closure of the Abbey, the monks left behind the most complete Cistercian abbey remains in the country.
The abbey’s beginnings
The abbey was founded in 1132 by 13 Benedictine monks from St Mary’s in York. They’d grown fed up of the extravagant and rowdy way that the monks lived in York and so they escaped seeking to live a devout and simple lifestyle elsewhere. This was how they came to Fountains.
By the time three years had passed the monks had become settled into their new way of life and had been admitted to the austere Cistercian Order and with that came an important development – the introduction of the Cistercian system of lay brothers.
Introduction of the lay brothers
The lay brothers (what we would now call labourer) relieved the monks from routine jobs, giving them more time to dedicate to God rather than farming the land to get by. It was because of the help of the lay brothers that Fountains became so wealthy through wool production, lead mining, cattle rearing, horse breeding and stone quarrying.
“Idleness is the enemy of the soul. For this reason the brethren should be occupied at certain times in manual labour and at other times in sacred reading.“
It wasn’t all plain sailing
Bad harvests hit the monks hard and they also had to deal with raids from the Scots throughout the 14th-century, which led to economic collapse. This was only made worse by the Black Death which struck the country in 1348.
Despite its financial problems, the Abbey remained important. The abbacy of Marmaduke Huby (1495 – 1526) marked a period of revival and the great tower built by Huby symbolises his hope for the Abbey’s future.
The Abbey was abruptly closed down in 1539 in the Dissolution of the Monasteries ordered by Henry VIII, and the abbot, prior and monks were sent away with pensions.
Fountains Abbey today
The estate was sold by the Crown to a merchant, Sir Richard Gresham. It remained in private hands until the 1960s, including William and John Aislabie who designed Studley Royal water garden of which the abbey became an integral part of. The National Trust bought the estate from the West Riding County Council in 1983.
The information here was taken from the National Trust website
Had an absolutely fabulous day at Studley Royal Deer Park. The weather was perfect. Cool and autumnal but brilliant sunshine. Did a four mile circular walk taking in beautiful views, plenty of deer, birds, water and awesome trees.
I originally went hoping to see some rutting deer, but all was quiet. It looked like all the herds were already established. I think rutting is at its height in October, so maybe I was too late. I did get some nice photos though, including a white hart.
Saint Mary’s church.
The deer .
Ripon Cathedral in the distance.
Some shots around the park.
And my walk.
My soul has been filled again until next time.
On Wednesday I visited Coldstones Cut near Pately Bridge Yorkshire. What a very interesting place. Its Yorkshires biggest and highest public artwork.
It was so windy and wild and quite exhilarating. Below are the explanation boards and a link to the website.
Below the sculpture and quarry is the original site of the Toft Gate Lime Kiln
Nidderdale is one of my favourite dales. If you love walking, history, rivers, wildlife, nature, picturesque towns and villages its the place to be.
Its an area of Britain I’ve only just discovered and I love it. Totally unspoilt so far.
From Carnforth in the south to Milnthorpe in the north, Morecambe bay to the west and the A6 being the border east.
If you love wildlife, birds, walking, spectacular scenery, peace and quiet, this is the place to go.
Morecambe bay is stunning and these pictures don’t do justice to its vastness.
I’ve visited twice now and will return many times, having found a brilliant caravan club CL site. When we arrived the first time there were deer running in far fields. We’ve seen an osprey and curlews from our caravan pitch.
Arnside is one of the places time forgot. It has two pubs with great beer and food. Great views, a railway station and plenty of nice walks. What more could you want Its lovely. Oh and location is recently for where Nick from Coronation Street got stuck in quicksand. You can cross Morecambe Bay from Arnside to Grange Over Sands at the North side, but at your peril if you do so without a guide to show you the way to avoid the quicksand.
This walk up Wharton Crag gave some fabulous views of the whole of Morecambe bay . It was also here at the start of our walk that we saw peregrine falcons nesting in the disused quarry.
Leighton Moss RSPB reserve is nearby and is well worth a visit. Highlights for us when we went were Mash Harriers and a heron eating an eel, which was quite a task.
We visited Heysham on the coast just below Morecambe and found this really interesting chapel.
As for Morecambe, lets just say I’d give it a miss. I know they are trying to regenerate the place but it is pretty much dead. Had to have a photo with Eric though.
I’m a humanist so I regard my soul as my inner being – the place where all the components that make me me live. My soul has felt a little degraded recently along with my confidence. Not sure why …………….could be an age thing! But today, today its been rejuvenated. How???? Very simple……….my trusty Virago 535 and the Yorkshire countryside. What more could you want?
A 67 mile round trip to Malham in North Yorkshire. Originally, I decided to go and see the peregrines at the Cove. Peregrines at Balham Cove, So loaded my bike with my heavy camera rucksack with my Canon 7D with large zoom attached and set off. However, when I got there, after a lovely cup of coffee and carrot cake, I took the path I thought led to the Cove, but yet again my memory mis-served me and it was the path to Janets Foss. So didn’t need the rucksack! Doh!
It was a lovely walk though. So peaceful, gorgeous sunny weather and lots of birdsong.
The wild garlic covered the floor, a missile thrush sang its heart out, a dipper in the stream was gathering food for its young residing in a hollowed out tree trunk and a woodpecker drummed in the distance.
Janets Foss wasn’t as full as normal but this border collie was enjoying the cool water.
Don’t know what a zebra was doing in the Yorkshire Dales! This pub supplied a welcome cold drink and although I didn’t partake the food looked gorgeous. I will be back.
A very short walk just over 2 miles, but can be easily extended by carrying on across the road after Janets Foss and following the footpath to the cove.
I love my adopted county and wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.