United Kingdom
Ryedale District

Here you’ll find travel reports about Ryedale District. Discover travel destinations in the United Kingdom of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

14 travelers at this place:

  • Day22

    More Moor

    June 19 in the United Kingdom

    And there will will be more moor tomorrow.

    We retraced our steps from Chop Gate back up to the moors, and headed up to the Wain Stones, then down again and up again to Urra Moor. We saw lots of grouse with little chicks as we crossed the moors today. We also passed old boundary markers, one with a hand carved on it and another with a face.
    We came up onto the former Rosedale Ironstone Railway, that used to serve iron mines 150 years ago. It’s now a level gravel track that we followed for about 7 kilometres. The track curves around the High Blakey Moor to the Lion Inn, our destination for the day. It suddenly appeared in front of us then disappeared as the track curved, then we took a little track up through a paddock and there it was again. And a road and cars in the car park, funny to see after a day on the moors

    The Lion Inn is the 4th highest Inn in Britain. It’s about 500 years old, all dark beams and low ceilings. Luckily the plumbing had been upgraded since then and our little attic room had a wonderful bath. No point in a shower, you’d hit your head on the ceiling.
    Only 2 days to go, the excitement is building!
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  • Day711

    Marfit Head Farm Campsite

    June 7 in the United Kingdom

    It was an early start to meet our friend Suhaine at Weetslade Country Park, near Gosforth for a stroll, followed by a natter over a cuppa, cakes and cookies in the van. It was great to catch up!

    We dropped into a nearby caravan shop and bought a couple of replacement plastic wine 'glasses'. Proper glass ones are heavy and get broken so easily in the van.

    After stocking up with food we drove south to the North York Moors, the countryside opening up before us as we neared our destination; Marfit Head Farm Campsite! We'd booked 5 nights here as a kind of holiday from the usual wild camping. At £13 a night it was more expensive than we are used to paying, but cheap for the UK, especially considering it included electric hookup.

    Marfit Head is a working dairy farm with 450 cattle, a few pigs, chickens, donkeys, wild goats and sheep. We were greeted by Angela who showed us where we could park using a copy of the site's hand drawn map. It is always more relaxing to have all the facilities to hand, such as bins, toilet emptying, drinking water and electricity. The sun was shining, so the 3 of us sat outside within our large allocated grassy pitch. Swallows darted around the field, Song Thrushes sang and cows lowed - bliss!

    Feeling considerably more chilled out, Vicky took a little time to explore before tea. To her delight, she discovered May, a black faced lamb with Fizz, her very friendly and noisy mother. Merlin the ram was in a seperate field with Jade, the retired beach donkey and her two fully grown foals. The sheep were Swiss Valais; a breed used for both meat and wool. They had had long curved black faces and were the biggest sheep Vicky had ever seen!

    Over the track were 8 tiny piglets, just 4 days old, that suckled enthusiastically as soon as Honey, their Mum, lay down. Adjacent to their enclosure was a pen containing 5 black Vietnamese Potbelly pigs, snuffling happily in the evening sunshine. All these animals were rescued and are now kept as pets on this family run farm.
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  • Day714

    Milking at Marfit Head

    June 10 in the United Kingdom

    (We're a bit late in uploading this one but hopefully it will be interesting!)

    One of the things that tempted us to stay at Marfit Head Farm Campsite was the opportunity to watch the cows being milked. This happened at 6am and 4pm, so we arranged to observe it on the afternoon of our first full day. Although we'd both seen milking on a small scale before and volunteered on a goat farm last summer, we'd never seen such a big operation and were fascinated, asking lots of questions and soaking up the information.

    Storm, the Border Collie helps herd the 450 cows from one of several pastures into the yard, from where they enter the milking shed and wait one by one to enter the 58 place New Zealand style rotary milker. They graze all summer and have their diet supplemented in the winter with homegrown silage and some beet fodder. The owner Angela led us round the raised concrete plinth with metal bars dividing each numbered milking station which hosted an electronic control pad, tubes and 4 suction cups.

    The cows themselves work out which order they enter the stalls, but this stays pretty much the same each day. They can detect smells from 6 miles away and were keen to get to the grain they knew would be automatically deposited into a feed tray once they were boxed in and travelled past a lever in the rotation. It takes approximately 10 minutes for an individual to go full circle and the suction cups automatically drop off when they sense the milk has stopped flowing. When they reach the end, a bar raises up and the cows reverse out of their stall to make their way back to the field. The herd was made up mostly of the big black and white Holstein-Fresians, a few of which did a double rotation as they had so much milk. Angela and her partner Trevor have also introduced the smaller brown Jersey cows and some Milking Shorthorns for a better mix of butterfat. The farm's bulls are allowed to run freely with the herd at times and produce cross bred calves. Each cow is kept until they are around 18 years old and will calve approximately 4 times in her life. The female calves are kept on as milkers and the bull calves are sold on to be reared for meat for a couple of years. Some cows had calved very recently and their afterbirths were still hanging. These were removed by Angela's 21 year old son who was running the milking session with te help of another worker.

    The milk is pumped into a storage container and collected by a tanker twice a week. The farm has always been keen on education and until recently, their produce was distributed fresh to local schools, whose classes would visit to see where their milk came from. Unfortunately there were problems with the distribution company and now the milk gets powdered and shipped to China to use in baby formula. Although we would have loved to buy some, regulations mean they are not allowed to sell it unpasturised.

    It had been an hour since we'd come into the parlour. At the start we didn't think we had many questions but as we watched, they flowed easily and we ended up quizzing Angela and learning loads. We felt really grateful for the opportunity to observe and find out about it all.

    You can view a short video of the milking on the VnW Travels You Tube Channel here: https://youtu.be/ecTy4Q1WIe4

    We spent 5 nights in total at Marfit Head Farm. At first we were a little worried we'd get bored but after having a busy month visiting family and friends, our bodies and minds were grateful for the opportunity to rest and catch up with some repairs on the van. Vicky spent many hours reupholstering the bench cushion - a very tricky process because of the awkward shape and material. She was however very pleased to find that her sewing machine operated well on the lithium ion charge box we had bought at christmas. The fact we don't need to be hooked up to electric means it is definitely worth taking with us on our travels. The cover is now useable, but still needs a lot of hand sewing before it is finished. No wonder the cost of getting it reupholstered professionally is so high!

    Will was able to fix a loose connection to one of the van's rear lights, order a new side light and make a stand for his fishing rod. We were very happy we chose to stay here and left feeling refreshed and relaxed.
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  • Day214

    Sherburn in Yorkshire

    May 29, 2017 in the United Kingdom

    This is our AirBnB stay for the next four nights. It is a very lovely cottage attached to the host's house. And that round thing in the middle of the floor is the old well, covers in glass. We cannot bring ourselves to walk on it.

  • Day72


    June 19 in the United Kingdom

    We were up early today to have a big day out in York. We drove to the Park and Ride and caught the bus into the centre as parking is difficult and expensive in the town. Bus dropped us off near York Minster.
    First impression was the entry into the walled city over the bridge and through the old roman gate. The Minster impressivelly dominated the end of the street where we alighted from the bus. Decided to walk the town walls and city centre before visiting the Cathedral. The town is quite quirky. The area called the Shambles is full of interesting old buildings (and tourists). We saw a small church right next to the cathedral and a plaque indicated it was where Guy Fawkes was baptised. After lunch we did a tour of the Minster. Our guide gave us a great insight into the architecture and history of the building. Before we left we walked through the gardens where we met some birds of prey being shown by a conservation group.
    Jumped back on the bus to get the car and home.
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  • Day68

    Wallace & Grommit

    June 15 in the United Kingdom

    Moving on day has come around again and we are off to Sunset Cottages on a farm 19 miles from York. Taking the route through the Dales we came across the Wensleydale Cheese Factory and showrooms. In our stop there we were shown how to make cheese, watched it being made, tasted it, and bought some. Driving on we visited Aysgarth Falls and went for a nice walk to see them. Arrived at the new farmstay about 5. The owners, Richard and his wife Heather, were there to meet and greet us. They are both in there 80s but look pretty good for it. The cottage is in a converted barn and carriage store. The views from the rooms over the paddocks are quite special. Before dinner we walked up the road to check out the area. It looks lijke quite an upmarket and well to do farming area with some big estates around.Read more

  • Day71

    Castle Howard

    June 18 in the United Kingdom

    We spent an interesting afternoon at Castle Howard today. It's a very large pile belonging to the Howard family who despite many powerful forebears do not hold a title. From the outside it is similar to Blenheim Palace which is the ancestral home of the Dukes of Marlborough. That's where the similarities end. CH was partially destroyed by a big fire in the mid 20th century and the damaged rooms were essentially repaired by the makers of Brideshead Revisited on the condition they could use the sets and estate for making the film. Now these "false rooms" are still open to the public plus some real ones too; including a grand banqueting hall ( hired out for weddings etc) and chapel (over the top.....) The lands around the house are very extensive and lovely. There was also a quite interesting history of the family during the two wars. They lost a number of the sons in both wars and the woman of the family proved very good managers and community centred. The heir apparent had just married an American girl and the guide was keen to share the details of it all, including huge sums to fly Rod Stewart in for the reception. Ya gotta laugh...The best part was the walled rose garden. It was a picture and the climbing/rambling roses were particularly gorgeous. Actually, we have seen these climbing roses everywhere on our travels from little cottage entrances to the grandest formal gardens and they are equally beautiful everywhere. It was nice to return to our farmstay and normality.Read more

  • Day69

    A Quiet day out

    June 16 in the United Kingdom

    A long sleep in this morning as we are both a bit weary from all the travelling. Early afternoon we drove over to the village of Hovingham. In the centre of the village is Hovingham Hall which was the childhood home of the Duchess of Kent. We took a guided tour and were lucky enough to be the only ones on the tour. The lady guide was very informative and seemed to enjoy being able to chat with us.
    Out the back of the hall is the oldest privately owned cricket ground in the UK, and there was a local cricket match on. Quintessential England!
    On walking into town we found the local bakery where Lou found a good coffee and we grabbed some pasties and cakes for tea.
    We then drove to Helmsley (a pleasant market town with a ridiculous number of tea shops) and the ruins of an ancient castle overlooking the village) On a second visit we went to the church and discovered a framed letter on the wall from David Livingston (I presume) thanking the local bishops wife for sending him a handmade mosquito net to Africa. Quite poignantly, he referred to the fact that he was returning to the lakes (I guess Lake Victoria of source of the Nile fame) the next day. Knowing that he ultimately died out there was sad. His writing was awful so suspect he was already very unwell. He had a sense of humour though and made a mosquito joke in the letter. The import of such a simple thing being available on the back wall of an obscure rural church was impressive on us and testimony to the English brilliance in record keeping from the obscure to the grandest of details.
    P.s. The pasties were yummy.
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  • Day70

    Mass and Dairies

    June 17 in the United Kingdom

    We got going early as Lou attended Mass at Ampleforth Abbey. Singing was superb and moving. The abbey is a Benedectine monastry and boarding school. Folliowing mass we walked into Ampleforth and had lunch at a nice cafe. Met a young guy on the path who had lived in Sydney. He had a very sweet cockerspaniel pup (Elvis) ? The dogs in this part seem to be spaniels mainly either gold and white or black and white. They are very well behaved generally as are most breeds we've seen.We then drove on to a dairy farm owned by the family of our cottage owners. They showed us their state of the art milking facility as well as new born calves and the whole farm operation. We were there most of the afternoon. On the way back we stopped for a beer and at the ruins of Byland Abbey. Another abbey destroyed by Cromwells Parliamentarian troops. Between Henry the 8th and him it's a wonder there are any liturgical sites left standing at all. York Minster was only just saved!!! Another story.Read more

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Ryedale District

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