Sunday, 13 November 2011

Wharfedale and Wensleydale

This was another Sunday afternoon drive out in to the Dales with Sal and a lovely sunny autumn day to boot. Our route took us up the Dale from Skipton to Kettlewell. I don't think either of us tire of calling here, it's everything a Dales Village should be albeit in recent years it has become a haven for second homes and holiday accommodation.

We always have a walk up to Saint Mary's Church at the far end of the village which has some beautiful stained glass windows. The east window is in memory of Charles Hyne, killed aged 18 in November 1916. At the feet of the risen Christ is the folded uniform of Charles. On the left and right are real life images of friends who survived the war and in the background is the army camp.

To the left and opposite the main door are the Holdsworth windows. These depict John Holdsworth of the King’s Royal Rifle Corps who was killed in 1945 and Michael Holdsworth of the Fleet Air Arm who was posted missing in 1942.

My eye was taken to the window below and especially to the light which was thrown across from the window opposite. The Church itself was founded in 1120 but there is little left of the original building. The church as we see it today was consecrated in 1885.I think it's one of the most charming Churches in the Dales.

A visit to Kettlewell is never complete without a quick call in to The Racehorses for a pint of Landlord and Thatchers Gold. We also had a light lunch consisting of a Racehorses "Special" sandwich each and a portion of chips to share which was rather scrummy and set us up for the rest of the day.

Fully fed and watered we headed over the top and into Bishopdale in the lovely afternoon sun. We had thought of going up to Castle Bolton but the Castle itself was closed for winter so we made for Aysgarth Falls instead. It was a bit to dark to do any justice to my photographs but I took a few for the record. We also popped in to The Yore Mill Craft shop for Sal's tat-fix. 

Its surprising how early the days draw in at this time of the year and by the time we got to Hawes it was dark We had a walk around the town calling in a few of the shops, Sal bought a dinky little glass butterfly fridge magnet and liquid provisions were also bought ie a £4.99 bottle of Cava for Sal and a couple of bottles of local Dent Aviator for me.

Our trip back down took us to what can only be described as a pub right out of The League of Gentlemen. The Helwith Bridge Inn, a more apt name would have been The Helwith Hole Inn! When we walked in I fully expected someone to turn round and say "this is a local pub for local people.....there's nothing for you here". The electrics must have been at least 40yrs old with wires hanging down all over the place. It was crying our for a new lick of paint and also for some new seating which didn't all but topple over when you sat on it! The beer was good and "local" though.

A diversion on the A65 near Hellifield miraculously brought us out near to the Cross Keys at East Marton which Sal recalled from her Pennine Way days. The pub is very quaint, dates from the 16th century and overlooks the Leeds and Liverpool Canal. We found a great big comfy leather settee, had a natter and enjoyed the final drink of the day before heading off home. 

Yet another cracking afternoon out.

Oops, one thing I have forgotten to mention is the sunset as we drove along Wensleydale towards Hawes. By luck I found a place to park up just behind the famous Wensleydale Trees for some photos and we were both treated to the most beautiful of sunsets (see final poto).

The East Window, St Mary's Kettlewell

Light on the stained glass window.

St Mary's Church, Kettlewell.

St Mary's Church, Kettlewell.

St Mary's Curchyard.

St Mary's Churchyard

Sign above door, Kettlewell.

Two Muppets.

Kettle-well and truly on.

Upper Falls Aysgarth

Upper Falls Aysgarth

Upper Falls Aysgarth

Upper Falls Aysgarth

Upper Falls Aysgarth

Upper Falls Aysgarth

Upper Falls Aysgarth

Wensleydale Sunset.

A journey of two halves.

It was one of those all too frequent occasions when the weather forecast had a big wad of thick cloud and rain hanging over Cumbria whilst ...