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Central guide walk UK East Yorkshire

YORKSHIRE WOLDS GUIDE

Central Drive

Written
by
Gwendoline Hirst ©

Wold is derived from the Anglo Saxon word weald or wald, meaning forest or wooded country. The tree covered hills became the home of prehistoric people who had walked across land, now covered by sea, to find new settlements. The Yorkshire Wolds were densely populated, as the valleys were still swamps and the trees provided shelter and protection from wild animals. Many remains have been found of these people, mainly in the burial mounds or barrows which are all over the Wolds. The same burial mounds were often used by succeeding generations, and remains of people born thousands of years apart have been found together.

The warlike Brigantes, or Ancient Britons, living in thatched wooden huts surrounded by earth defences, occupied much of Yorkshire before the arrival of the Romans in 70 AD. There were roadways between the hamlets with cemeteries or barrows every mile or so as boundary markers along the ancient trackways. When the Romans arrived on the Wolds they settled with the peace loving Parisii tribe from France already living in the area. They were hunters who gathered fruits and berries. After the defeat of the Romans by the Angles, Diera, as the Wolds were called, was ruled in 560 AD by Aella. At this time slaves from Diera, or Yorkshire as we call it now, were sent to Rome and the Venerable Bede wrote the story of the Anglian slaves seen by Pope Gregory. He was told that the fair haired, blue eyed children were Angles, to which he replied, “Not Angles, but angels”.

As early as 875 Yorkshire was divided into three Ridings by the Danish parliament in York named “The Thing”. Each Riding was divided into Wapentakes, for, when the tribe leaders met to discuss local affairs, they showed their approval by holding their weapons above their heads in a “weapon shake”, just as we raise our hands now.

So the name Wapentake was evolved. After the invasion of the Normans in 1066, William the Conqueror was so enraged by the resistance of the Northern people to his rule, that he set out on the “Harrying of the North”. The whole area, from the Humber to the Tees, was burnt and left as waste land. The Wolds forests were decimated and the land took centuries to recover. The peasants were reluctant to plant trees as they believed that witches could hide behind them, so the Wolds, even today, have very few trees. William divided the land among his barons who built manor houses and castles, some of which still stand today.

THE CENTRAL WOLDS

MEANDER BETWEEN BRIDLINGTON AND POCKLINGTON

LANGTOFT
BRIDLINGTON
KILHAM

COTTAM

SLEDMERE

GARTON on the WOLDS

KIRKBURN

TIBTHORPE

HUGGATE


KEY MAP START BUTTONS

KEY MAP START AT ANY POINT

CLICK ANY NAME


RUSTON PARVA

LITTLE DRIFFIELD

NORTH DALTON

WARTER

NUNBURNHOLME

LONDESBOROUGH

MILLINGTON
POCLKLINGTON
BURNBY

When following this route L means turn left;
R means turn right; + means cross roads
You may also like to use a road map or satellite navigation

This round trip of about 70 miles takes you along Roman roads, through the changing landscape of the Wolds, up to the highest village and down into the valleys.

We start at the Scarborough Road roundabout in Bridlington’s Old Town and take the A 165 Hull road. [1] Opposite the new hospital, left, built in 1987, 2nd turn R Woldgate. This Roman road was the route along which Irish gold was transported over the Pennines to the harbour in Bridlington. Cross the remains of the bridge over the stream that filled the Fishponds right, once used by Boynton Hall, and now farmed commercially. Note the arched opening giving a viewpoint over the countryside towards the Hall. The woods have now been immortalised on canvas by David Hockney in his Yorkshire Wolds paintings. After passing through the woods you can see views of the sea, left, and Boynton Hall in the valley, right. Rudston beacon was on top of the hill, right, above Rudston.

Continue straight at the T junction, then straight at the next junction towards Kilham. Straight at the next T junction, passing, right, the brick and tile works used for 200 years until the 1900’s, you enter East Street in KILHAM, [2] which has been inhabited since prehistoric times. An Iron Age cemetery was found nearby, also a Neolithic long barrow dating from 4400 BC. This would have contained two timber framed rooms. One was a “house for the dead” where bodies were left to decompose before being cremated, then the whole thing was covered with earth. Left, is the mere, which supplied water for the village and, right, Manor Farm with the old ropery next door, only closed in 1940. The bricked in archway of the former brewery may also be seen, right.

The Ropery and Brewery Kilham BA Education

The Ropery and Brewery Kilham

On Eastgate a private lunatic asylum, known as the Kilham Retreat, was opened in 1858 for 6 women. Just before the road swings left is Hall Farm which was built in 1716 as shown on the plaque. This was at one time the court house for the area and has a central doorway and pedimented second storey.

The Court House Kilham BA Education

The Court House Kilham

In the verge below the churchyard wall is the bull ring where the bulls were tethered during bull baiting. In the Middle Ages from 1227 Kilham was the administrative centre for the Yorkshire Wolds, with markets and fairs held in the wide main street, lined with shops. With the opening of the Driffield canal in 1772 business declined and Driffield became the main market centre.

The Bull Ring Kilham BA Education

The Bull Ring Kilham

Near the old saddlers, left, is the high cast iron pump, where the horse drawn water cart would have been filled with water and taken to the animals.

The Pump Kilham BA Education

The Pump Kilham

Water was scarce on the tops of the wolds, and Robert Gardner is said to have invented in 1775 a widely used artificial dew pond. John Lamplugh, born 1810 in the village was a well known steeplechaser and David Byass the England cricketer was also born here. All Saints’ church is Norman and has the original buttresses with a waggon roof in the nave. The doorway, with very elaborate Norman stone carving, leads to the restored interior. A stained glass window, left, depicts poets and musicians, and there is a carved wood altar and mosaic screen. As you leave, notice in the churchyard the upended stone coffin with the sundial on top.

Coffin Kilham BA Education

Stone Coffin Kilham

Turn L Driffield at the Bay Horse Inn, then L Ruston Parva, passing, right, the old windmill which stood here in 1200, now a dwelling. In 1835 there were 6 schools, now only one remains, right. The area was used as training grounds for the Normandy landings in World War Two, as the terrain is similar, and crash runways were built on the outskirts for returning bombers. Free French and Polish forces were also billeted in the village. In World War Two 200,000 pigeons, which have natural magnetic and solar compasses and can identify landmarks, were used by the National Pigeon Service which was run by Loftsmen of the Royal Signals. The pigeons were recruited from private breeders, one of which was in Kilham, and would fly between military headquarters at a speed of 35 miles per hour. They were used in emergencies by agents behind enemy lines or ditched RAF crews as they were able to fly through fog and other adverse conditions. Pigeons were awarded the animal Victoria Cross called the Dickin Medal for outstanding service. They were also used by the Home Guard Carrier pigeon service, even though after June 30th 1943 no more pigeon food was supplied from the Army Food Stores.

Turn R RUSTON PARVA, [3] earlier known as Little Ruston, Ruston being a Scandinavian personal name and Parva meaning Little. As you enter the village, on top of the hill, right, there was a beacon probably before 1588, and in use until the 1800’s, passing light to Bainton. L fork Lowthorpe. Manor Farm, left, has earthworks or mounds in the fields showing earlier buildings.

Manor farm and earthworks BA Education

Manor farm and earthworks

It is thought that a large mansion stood here from the 1700’s to the 1800’s. Fork right up the little hill to see the tiny church on top. You have to walk through the iron gates and up the grass track to St Nicholas’ Church, rebuilt in brick in 1832, on the stone base of a Norman chapel.

St St Nicholas' church, Ruston Parva BA Education

St Nicholas’ church Ruston Parva

The square bell tower is tending to lean and iron rods are holding the walls together. There are no windows on the north side and inside are box pews with an unusual two decker pulpit. Continue to the main road. Chalk from the quarry, left, was being burnt to make lime in 1723, and there were 8 kilns in 1850. The house on the corner of the main road was the New Inn, built in the 1700’s after the roads were improved and there were more travellers.

R Driffield. Nafferton mill, left, used until recently for grinding corn and malt, had steam power in 1840, and the stones were replaced in 1890 by rollers.

2nd exit at the roundabout, A164 Beverley, along the Driffield by pass. 2nd exit again at the next roundabout, A 164 Beverley, then at the third roundabout 3rd exit A 166 York.

L LITTLE DRIFFIELD, [4] R into the village and L Church Lane, passing the pond, left. Before the opening of the Driffield canal in 1772 Little Driffield held fairs and markets, with 4 fairs a year at one time. The householders were allowed to sell malt liquor without a licence at this time just by hanging a bush over the door as a sign. There was a church here in early Christian times and the Saxon church was larger than the Norman church of St. Peter.

 Church of St Peter, Little driffield BA Education

Church of St Peter Little Driffield

A tower was added in the 1300’s and the chancel and nave were rebuilt in 1807. The hammer beam roof in the nave has painted bosses, beams and shields. There is a cross at the churchyard entrance dedicated to Alfred the Wise, King of Northumbria. An inscription on the chancel wall says that King Aldfrid of Northumbria was buried here in 705 after reigning for 20 years. He is thought to have had a palace on moot hill in Driffield. Mortally wounded in battle at Ebberston he took refuge in a cave then was brought back to Little Driffield where he died. His remains are probably in the churchyard.

Drive along the old road, over the River Hull, which rises at Elmswell. The small cottage, left, was the railway crossing keeper’s until the Driffield to Malton line was closed. Turn L at the T junction and drive along the edge of the industrial estate to the roundabout at Kelleythorpe, then 3rd exit A163 Goole. In 1851 a barrow 18m diameter and 3m high was excavated. This contained the remains of a Bronze Age Chief, an archer’s tunic with amber buttons, as well as Roman and Anglo Saxon relics. Right is a World War 2 RAF airfield which was transferred to the army in 1977. The airfield became the School of Mechanical Transport when the army took over and renamed it Alamein Barracks, training drivers on a cross country driving circuit. As the hangers were not in use they were wind and rain proofed in 1980 and used for grain storage, but these were closed in 2003 and bought by a property developer. During the 1990s many of the houses on the other side of the road were sold off, together with some of the married quarters for officers. In 1992 the site became RAF Staxton Wold, Driffield Site, but was finally closed in 1996. The Army Cadet Force now use the guardroom, station headquarters, sick quarters and some of the single quarters, and have added mobile classrooms and an indoor firing range, but many parts of the camp are now rather run down.

For the short route turn R Garton on the Wolds and continue reading from [15].

To continue the drive take the 2nd exit at the roundabout B1246 Pocklington, passing, right, Beacon Field where the Bainton Beacon stood at one time.

A sharp Z bend brings you to the village of ghosts, NORTH DALTON, [5] which has Victorian style lamp standards which were installed in the 1970s. A high red brick wall surrounds the grounds of Westwood House, left, and through the wrought iron gates, opposite right, was the blacksmith’s. The Methodist chapel built in 1839, now a private house, stands at the crossroads, right, with the old school, once a tearoom, now a private house, on the other corner. Right is the entrance to All Saints’ Church which has an early Norman doorway, and was rebuilt in the 1800’s.

All Saints' church North Dalton BA Education

All Saints‘ church North Dalton

In 1950, after the East wall was struck by lightning, the 3 lancet East window was replaced by glaziers from York Minster, and is one of the only windows in England to show the cross as a tree. When the new organ was being built an ancient family tomb was discovered containing 4 coffins. The vicar here in 1865 was S. Baring - Gould, who wrote the words of the hymn “Onward Christian soldiers” for a Whitsuntide procession to St. John’s church Horbury Bridge the same year. In 1868 he married a mill girl and they had 15 children. He also wrote thirty novels and other antiquarian books. Across the road, the ghost of “Old Tin Boots” is said to have been heard along the raised walkway behind the mere. A bricked in archway in the high red brick wall alongside the walkway gave access to Westwood House built in 1795 by Lord Halifax, on the site of the manor house.

Westwood house North Dalton BA Education

Westwood house North Dalton

Enlarged in 1820, it was used by the Free French during World War 2, and was possibly visited by General de Gaulle. A spy caught on the roof, using mirrors to signal messages to Bainton, was court marshalled in one of the bedrooms. Another soldier became so drunk that he fell over the bannister and broke the newel post which was replaced in pine. This has now been renewed in oak and a note placed in a crevice giving the date for future historians. The house at one time had a friendly ghost which used to switch on the lights. Another ghost also haunts the Star Inn car park.

Star Inn North Dalton BA Education

The Star Inn North Dalton

Continue to WARTER. [6] The Priory Church of St. James is approached along a grass and gravel walkway lined with yew trees.

The Priory church of St.James Warter BA Education

The Priory church of St. James Warter

The Anglo Saxon church became part of the priory which was behind the present church. The household appears to have been rather undisciplined as, at one time, it was noted that the Canons of Warter Priory were sleeping off the premises as well as wearing gold and silver rings. Once patronised by the families living in Warter Hall, it was rebuilt in 1862 by Lord Muncaster but was closed for worship in 1990. The Yorkshire Wolds Buildings Preservation Trust saved the building and obtained a grant for renovation. The unusual octagonal spire has three bells, one of which is from the old church, one given by Charles Henry Wilson and one by parishioners in 1884. The pulpit is made from Caen stone and there are some old oak pews in the nave and an oak screen with carved panels. Through the wrought iron gateway in the three arches, left, was the Wilson Mausoleum, built in 1907 for Isobel, wife of Guy Greville Wilson. This became unsafe and was demolished in 1966, but her marble effigy now lies in front of the arches. The cottages facing the war memorial on the green were built in the late 1800’s as 7 cottages for estate workers. The original slate roofs were thatched in the 1930’s, and they were made into 4 dwellings. In 2007 thatchers were at work repairing the thatch, using straw for the ridges as Norfolk reed is brittle and does not bend.

Cottages Warter BA Education

Thatcher Warter BA Education     Thatcher Warter BA Education

Warter cottages with a thatcher working on a porch ridge

L Nunburnholme, passing, left, the Methodist chapel built 1878, which has now been made into a private house. The school, right, was built in 1972. The old school was built in 1868 by Lord Muncaster for 150 children, and is now the community centre. A house for the master was next door.

At the T junction turn L Nunburnholme and Hayton. On the right in the valley are the wooded grounds at the back of Warter Hall, the mansion named built in the late 1700’s by Lord Muncaster, but the name was changed in 1872 to Warter Priory. In the 1600s the estate passed, through marriage, to Sir William Pennington, and his descendent Lowther Pennington was created the first Lord Muncaster in 1783. In 1845 Lady Muncaster stopped the railway surveyors from entering the estate and no railway was built there. Many of the houses were built by Lord Muncaster and have an M in the brickwork. Charles Henry Wilson, who became Baron Nunburnholme in 1906, owned the Wilson shipping line, the biggest privately owned merchant shipping line in the world and lived at Warter Priory, which he bought in 1878. He and his wife were in the Temperance movement and she closed the Pack Horse Inn and a shop, now the post office was built on the site. Warter Priory was an imposing residence built of red brick with stone facings on the windows and several square towers rather like a French chateau. Inside were 90 rooms, marble staircases and a minstrels gallery, with extensive gardens surrounding it including greenhouses, peach houses, an orchid house and a gardenia house. The Hon. George Vestey who was the son of Lord Vestey, owner of Dewhurst the butchers, bought the estate in 1929 and after his death in 1968 it was sold to the Guinness Trust. They demolished the mansion in 1970. In 1998 the estate was bought by Hull businessman Malcolm Healey.

Turn right, Hayton into NUNBURNHOLME. [7] At the triangular village green turn L over the bridge, opposite which was the Devonshire Arms, closed by Lady Nunburnholme and now a dwelling. Keep L to St. James church with the old rectory next door.

St. James church Nunburnholme BA Education

St. James church Nunburnholme

Dating from Norman times, the church was restored in 1872 at a cost of £1000, to designs by George Gilbert Scott. During restoration parts of an Anglo Saxon cross, from before 900 AD, were found in the walls. This is on view in the church and is classed as an Ancient Monument. The tower, dating from 1902, designed by Temple Moore, is a memorial to Rev. Francis Orpen Morris, rector from 1854 to 1893. He wrote many books on birds, including 6 volumes of “A Natural History of British Birds”, and started the movement for the protection of birds. Also a Historian, he wrote 6 volumes of “The County Seats of the Noblemen and Gentlemen of Great Britain and Ireland”. His son Marmaduke Charles Francis Morris, rector from 1893, was an antiquarian and authority on East Yorkshire dialect. He installed the iron bell frame in 1902 and there were 6 new bells by 1908. The bellringers have used them enthusiastically ever since. In 2001 the tower was repaired and the bells were removed to be cleaned by the original firm who made them, John Taylor of Loughborough.

Return to the village green, passing, left, the old school built in1854 for 54 children. This was closed in 1958 and is now a dwelling. Bear R Londesborough, with Manor Farm, left. The trackway left of the farm leads to the site of the nunnery, founded for Benedictine nuns in the 1100’s, and from which the village name is derived. Drive up Totterdown Hill, its name telling you how steep it is, and at the top see the Vale of York spread out below you. Stepped fields or lynchets had to be used on these steep slopes. Straight at + Londesborough.

Turn L into LONDESBOROUGH, [8] then 3rd L in the village, noting the iron lamp posts. Right, on the corner, along an unmade road are the almshouses or Londesborough Hospital, built by the Earl of Burlington for 12 men and women in 1680.

Londesborough hospital BA Education

Londesborough hospital

At this time the word spital meant a refuge, and a hospital was a place of hospitality and refuge. Built with one room upstairs and one room downstairs, they were altered in the 1920’s to 6 single storey dwellings, and in the 1990s extensions were built at the back. All Saints church, right, was built in the 1100’s, and an Anglo Saxon cross head, probably a preaching cross from the site, is built in above the Norman doorway. The porch was added in 1679 The chapel left of the chancel is above the Burlington vault and had hanging in it funerary helmets and gauntlets, with battle pennants from 1694. These have now been framed to preserve them. Temple Moore, the Victorian architect, married the daughter of one of the rectors. The grave of the estate gardener and botanist Thomas Knowlton, d 1781, is in the churchyard. The old rectory opposite was built in 1767. Further along, left, is a row of cottages built 1750, with, next door, the old school, built in the 1600’s, originally thatched, now the reading room. Across the road, right, the wrought iron gates in the red brick arch were at the entrance to the old hall.

The Old hall gates and All Saints church Londesborough BA Education

The Old hall gates and All Saints church Londesborough

Many Roman artifacts have been found in the area and it is thought that there was a Roman village here. The Kings of Northumbria may also have had a summer palace here where Paulinus met King Edwin in the 600’s to persuade him that the pagan court should become Christian. Londesborough Hall, castellated with 3 storeys and 7 bays, was built in 1589 by Lord Clifford, whose father had been called “The Butcher” because of his brutality in the Wars of the Roses. The two sons were hidden by their mother on a nearby farm disguised as shepherds to escape their Yorkist enemies and Henry Clifford became known as “the Shepherd Lord”. He eventually regained his estates and fought at the battle of Flodden.

The Old hall terrace and deer shelters Londesborough BA Education

The deer shelters and old hall terrace Londesborough

Richard Boyle, who married Lady Elizabeth Clifford in 1634, was created Earl of Burlington in 1644. It was he who in 1669, together with several other landowners, made an endowment to the Kiplingcotes Races, which are still run in March. In the 1670s the hall was enlarged and gardens laid out, together with the stables, deer shelters and new estate houses. The third earl, Richard, met Bridlington born William Kent in Italy in 1719 and brought him back to England, where he remodelled the house in the Italian style. David Garrick, the actor manager, used to visit the hall in the 1740’s, and his ghost is said to walk down the avenue of elm trees planted in the grounds. On the death of Lord Burlington in 1753 the estate passed to his son in law, William Cavendish, who became 4th Duke of Devonshire. It is rumoured that in 1790 both the wife and the mistress of the 5th Duke had a baby at about the same time. His wife had a girl and the mistress a boy. As the duke wanted an heir the babies were changed and the illegitimate heir succeeded to the title in 1811. The Hall, however, was neglected and being unable to pay the repair bills and also about to enlarge Chatsworth House, the duke had the Hall demolished in 1818. The stable block, right, now named Stable Court, was designed in 1676 and is now 4 dwellings. On the corner is the entrance to the new hall, built as the “Shooting Box” in 1839. In 1845 George Hudson, the “Railway King” bought the estate to block the building of a rival railway line from York to Hull. His station architect G.T. Andrews built a private station for him near the estate on the Hull to Market Weighton line. However, in 1849 Hudson became bankrupt and in 1850 the estate was bought by Lord Albert Denison, who became Baron Londesborough. He enlarged the house, remodelled the gardens and rebuilt the lake. Members of the royal family were soon frequent visitors. In the early 1900s the Hall was rented out and in 1923 was bought by Mr and Mrs Lupton Booth. The estate passed in 1935 to Dr. R. F. Ashwin, who, on his marriage in 1947 came to live at the Hall. During World War 2 the Military Police were billeted there. Hall. Turn L at the end of the road then L at the + past the old school, now a dwelling. The concert hall, right, was built as a laundry for the Londesboroughs and the inside walls are covered by murals painted during World War 2 by German prisoners, Karl Hans Kruche and Otto Wegener, who were in the P.O.W. camp No. 73 Storwood, Melbourne near York and were brought to work on the local farms. They did not know where they were being taken and after the war had to make enquiries to find out the location.

The Old Laundry concert hall Londesborough BA Education

The Old Laundry concert hall Londesborough

The estate houses along here were built around 1860.

R at the end, then straight at the + Burnby, along part of the Wolds Way, a walkway from Hessle to Filey, with panoramic views of the Vale of York and the Humber Estuary.

L into BURNBY. [9] As you enter the village, on the right is Burnby House built with money from the three Derby wins by Simeon Templeman, the jockey. In 1839 he won on Bloomsbury, 1847 on Cossack and 1848 on Surpice. He died here in 1884.

Burnby house BA Education

Burnby house

The restored Norman Church of St. Giles was once larger, with an aisle through the blocked in arches on the North wall, left. A bomb dropped on the railway line in World War Two damaged the building and the York stone slabs on the roof had to be replaced by Cornish slate. The two bells were removed to be recast by John Warner in 1886 and were repaired in 1994 by David Potter.

St. Giles church Burnby BA Education

St. Giles church Burnby

L Hayton, POCKLINGTON, [10] along the route of the old railway, passing, at the second Z bend, the old gatekeepers’ house. At the T junction turn L Burnby Hall. Turn L at the roundabout if you wish to visit Burnby Hall gardens, bequeathed to the people of Pocklington in 1962 on the death of big game hunter Major Percey. M. Stewart, who was assistant headmaster at Pocklington School from 1895 until 1901. Originally called Ivy Hall the name was changed to Burnby Hall by Major Stewart after he came to live here in 1904. Herbert Stewart, his younger brother, was later invited became English tutor to the sons of Grand Duke Alexander of Russia between 1908 and 1917 and was witness, with the Romanov's, to the Russian revolution. At that time fields surrounded the house, but over the years the area was transformed into tranquil gardens full of unusual plants. The National Collection of waterlilies fill the lakes and his collection of trophies from many countries may be seen in the museum. The building housing the Stewart Collection was designed by Michael Knowles and opened in 1968.

3rd exit at the roundabout Town Centre then R at the next roundabout Town Centre. There is parking in the Market Place and on the outskirts. All Saints church, left, is of Norman origin, but is built on the site of an Anglo Saxon building.

All Saints church Pocklington BA Education

All Saints church Pocklington

As you enter the churchyard left, the Sotheby Cross dating from the 1300’s stands in the churchyard. Inscribed round the base is “Paulinus here preached and celebrated AD 627”. The beck running by the churchyard was probably where he baptised the first Christians. The column has a new top carved by Matthias Garn of Bugthorpe, depicting scenes from the bible. At one time the curfew bell was rung every day, and on December 1st for an hour, at the request of a man who, coming home from Stamford Bridge, had become lost on the moor and hearing the Pocklington bells he found his way back. There was also a brazier on top of the tower serving as a beacon sending light to Holme on Spalding Moor. After the 1200’s there were fairs and markets, and during one of these in 1733 an acrobat Thomas Pelling performed, whilst tied to a rope from a pinnacle of the church. However, his rope gave way and he was crushed against the tower. During the 1600’s 3 women accused of witchcraft were publically executed or burnt, one for crucifying her mother and another, “Old Wife Green” was lynched and burnt alive by the mob. On entering the south doorway of the church at the base of the tower, left, is the font standing on four marble pillars. This area has been restored and now has a modern vestry with a spiral staircase leading to meeting rooms. On the left of the nave is the original top of the Sotheby Cross. During the Civil Wars in the 1600s this was buried in the churchyard for preservation and forgotten. It was discovered by a gravedigger whilst digging a grave in 1835 and in 1890 the cross was placed at the base of the tower, only to be moved outside again during alterations. Further along the Market Place is the Feathers Inn, probably Elizabethan, a famous posting and coaching inn. Said to have had stabling for 100 horses, the gentry would change their horses here on a long journey and collect them on the way back.

The Feathers Pocklington BA Education

The Feathers Pocklington

The 5 mile canal opened in 1818 stopped 1 mile short of the town, near the Hull to York road. Disused wharves and warehouses can still be seen at Canal Head. Back towards the church end of the Market Place Railway Street leads to the old railway station, now used as a sports hall by Pocklington School, right.

Pocklington School headmasters house BA Education

Pocklington school headmaster’s house

The railway, which took traffic away from the canal, no longer runs through the town, and the end of the school day has been changed from 3.40 to 3.45 as the pupils no longer have to rush to catch the train at 3.45pm. Dr. John Dolman founded the school as a free grammar school in 1514 and formed a guild to run it called “The Society of Brethren of the name of Jesus, the Blessed Virgin and St. Nicholas of Pocklington”. Margaret Easingwold fell in love with him but he was in Holy Orders and not allowed to marry. Heartbroken, she founded a nunnery at Wilberfoss. When she died her ghost haunted the nunnery so her body was brought back to the church to be buried near John Dolman. Whilst a pupil in 1771 at his grandfather’s old school, William Wilberforce wrote his first letter to the paper against slavery. A more recent pupil was the writer Tom Stoppard.

Leave Pocklington along the Fangfoss road, following the Millington signs. Turn right at the petrol station, bear left at the roundabout, and as you near the village take R Millington then R fork Millington. R into MILLINGTON village only. [11]


St Margaret’s church Millington

This may have been the Roman village of Delgovicia as the Roman road from Lincoln to Malton passed close by. Remains of a Roman camp were found north of the village extending to Garrowby Hill where five Roman roads meet. There was also a circular temple dedicated to Diana where Romans would have worshipped. A hooping iron can be seen along the main street, used for shaping cart wheels. Left is the Gate Inn, a reminder of the gaits, which were the amount of land allowed to each farmer for grazing on the pastures. Continue to the + then turn left and park on the parking area, left to visit St Margaret’s church. At the entrance to the churchyard is an ancient coffin lid. Built in the 1100s the south door of the church has a three tier Norman arch. The top of the tower has been repaired with bricks and there are two bells. Leaving the church turn left again and at the + turn R to Millington Pastures.

Millington Pastures BA Education

Millington Pastures valley

This narrow road runs through old Wolds grassland and is a site of Special Scientific Interest, with wild flowers on the hillsides. Until 1960 the grassland was shared by farmers for sheep grazing, each renting a stint or area of land where 6 sheep or 4 ewes were allowed to graze.

Millington Pastures BA Education

Millington Pastures highground

Early man found this an awe inspiring place and on the higher slopes are many burial mounds. In the valley, left, is Millington Wood, in which are the remains of an ancient Ash wood. Park in the car park, left in the valley, from which there are pleasant walks and a nature trail through the trees. Sheep tracks cross the high Wold slopes just as they have for centuries.

L HUGGATE [12] with the surrounding countryside changing to enclosed fields. L into the village, an ancient settlement, one of the highest on the Wolds. R before the “No through road” is St. Mary’s church, with the old vicarage next door.

St. Mary's church and the old vicarage Huggate BA Education

St. Mary’s church and the old vicarage Huggate

Originally Norman, the church has a spire, a small Waggon roof in the porch and an early Norman chancel arch. A notice on a pillar, left, is from the Manor Court of Huggate in 1826, consisting of twelve jurors, two affearers, who assess the sum payable and one pinder, who impounds livestock. This states the rules and fines regarding livestock in the village streets or the housing of vagrants. As you leave the churchyard the village pond, left, was formed by the Anglo Saxons who lined the depression with clay. The well is 103 metres deep.

Return to the main road and turn L Wetwang and Driffield, then 2nd R TIBTHORPE. [13] Drive through the small village of Tibthorpe, noting the war memorial. In 2007 Malcolm Maclachlan created a life size wooden sculpture of the Giant William Bradley which was placed near his birthplace in Market Weighton in time for the Bradley celebrations in May.

War memorial Tibthorpe BA Education

War memorial Tibthorpe

Straight at the + and L into KIRKBURN, [14] “the church by the stream”. The Primitive Methodist chapel, left, built in 1899 is now a workshop and dwelling. St. Mary’s church, left, built in 1153, was restored by Tatton Sykes in 1857 to designs by J. L. Pearson and G. E. Street. The Norman doorway leads to the interior, with a waggon roof, richly painted chancel screen and marble screen behind the altar. The Norman font from the 1100’s is a rare example of its type. Through the archway to the tower you see stone steps ascending up two walls to reach a spiral staircase. The church and the old school, opposite, narrowly missed destruction in 1950 when a jet aircraft from Driffield crashed into the churchyard. Further along the road, left, a cross stands on a small hill. Here stood a giant Elm tree, with 8m. girth, said to have been planted during the Commonwealth in the 1600’s. The legend is that treasure was buried beneath it.

Continue over the stream L Driffield. The house at Battleburn built 1852 may be on the site of some earlier battle. L GARTON on the WOLDS. [15] Notice the track of the old railway, right, with a house alongside, built in 1852, probably for the crossing keeper. At the + the wide gravel road which is now grass, skirts the Garton Slack site where remains of an Iron Age chariot burial were found, thought to be a chief of the La Tene tribe. A Romano British farmstead was also found. The “Malton Dodger”, stopping at every station, used to run along the Malton to Driffield railway, now disused. The old station, now a house, is on the right.

Garton railway station BA Education

Garton railway station

The Royal Family travelled to Sledmere along this route. British and Anglian cemeteries were found on the brickyard site, left, owned by the Sykes family, which operated from 1812 to 1914. Brickyard Cottage was once a row of workmen’s cottages. Behind the cottages stands the old kiln. St. Michael and All Angels church, right, dates from 1132 with tower and nave from this time and Norman arched door surrounds.

St. Michael and All Angels church Garton BA Education

St. Michael and All Angels church Garton

The building was restored by Sir Tatton Sykes in 1856 to designs by J. L. Pearson and has a painted barrel roof. G. E. Street designed the magnificent decorated interior in 1865, with wall paintings, mosaic floor and dado by Clayton and Bell. The walls of the nave are covered in scenes from the Old Testament, with New Testament scenes in the chancel. These were painted using the spirit fresco method, which is a mixture of oil and resin bound pigment. The dado of Spanish tiles was put in place by F. Garrard of Millwall, London. The original designs for the paintings are framed and hang in the tower. Wolfgang Gartner, Donald Smith and Rachel Ricketts started work in 1985 on the restoration of the wall paintings under the direction of the architect Andrew Anderson. This was completed in 1991. The Pevsner Memorial Trust contributed money towards the restoration as Pevsner wrote that it was essential that these should be preserved at any cost. The octagonal font is made of marble and has a wooden lid cover reaching almost to the ceiling decorated with carved statues of saints.

Wall paintings BA Education

Wall paintings above tiles Garton church

The old school with the bell above the door is opposite the church, with the modern infant school surrounding it. The old school house is at the end of the road on the corner, left. Turn left A166 York then through the village turn right B 1252 Malton. Left is the Sykes Monument surrounded by a ha-ha.

Sykes monument BA Education

Sykes monument

This 37m or 120 feet high greystone monument, designed by John Gibbs as a lookout tower, was built in 1865 in memory of Sir Tatton Sykes. The sculptures round the base depict Sir Tatton on horse back as well as agricultural implements, to show his interests. Nearby is an ancient earthwork in which were discovered coins from 600 and 700AD. Continue to SLEDMERE, [16] passing, in the field, right, in the trees, a folly called Sledmere Castle.

Turn right, B 1253 Bridlington then second R Langtoft, Cottam. Continue to the second sign to Langtoft which is a crossroads then turn R along the concrete road and drive as far as the gate to see the site of the deserted village of COTTAM. [17] The red brick church in the middle of a field is all that remains, though earthworks show where the village was. Fifty people were living in this Anglian village in 1377, but the Black Death reduced the population by half and over the years the houses gradually fell into disrepair. The original church, which had two bells, was built near the village pond at the centre of the village where four roads intersected. One went from Driffield to the Roman Road called High Street, which ran from Sledmere to Rudston, one to Langtoft and one to Cowlam. In the 1700s there were nine dwellings, which decreased to six in 1726, and some of the land was used for a rabbit warren in 1732. The rabbits were a source of food and the fur used in the clothing industry. Holy Trinity church was built in 1890 on the site of the old church. This was a chapel of ease and therefore had no resident rector, but was run by a curate from Langtoft. Services were held once a year at Harvest time until the 1930s, and in 1990 the Church Commissioners were about to demolish the church but were persuaded to leave it in situ by Arthur Mason of Cottam House. The font is now in the church at Langtoft. Cottam House, to the south of the village, was built in the 1800s by Richard Knowsley. During World War Two it was used by the Air Ministry who owned it until 1959.

cottam church BA Education

Holy Trinity church Cottam amidst the lost village

Beyond Cottam House farm is the site of a disused World War Two airfield. The land was sold to the Air Ministry by Julia Stead in 1938 and the airfield opened in September 1939 as a bomber station for no. 4 Bomber Group Command, which was a satellite to Driffield. The site had one hangar, three concrete runways, a perimeter track and twenty seven hard standings. However, in 1940 the site was abandoned and rarely used. Classed as “the biggest mistake of the war” air pockets made it unsafe for the landing of light aircraft as it was 485 feet above sea level and it was only used for leaflet dropping. In March 1944 a USAAF 24 Liberator had to make a forced landing. After this, in 1945, it was used by 91 Maintenance Unit as a bomb dump, with the bombs brought by lorry from Driffield Station. The Control Tower was demolished in 1980 and the runways removed. the Generator House, Ablution Block and Laundry were still standing in 1999

Turn round and return to the +. Straight across to LANGTOFT, [18] nestling in the valley. Left, in the village centre is a grass area which was the pond, filled in to prevent flooding on the road. Turn left up Church Lane to St. Peter’s church, passing, left, the school and church room.

St. Peter's church Langtoft BA Education

St. Peter’s church Langtoft

Originally Norman it was rebuilt in the 1800’s The Anglo Saxon font, left as you enter, was brought from Cottam church. The carved stone octagonal font with carved wood cover is 1800’s. Each stained glass window depicts a different saint, and there is a carved wood screen behind the altar. Right of the chancel are the 3 sedilia seats for the medieval mass, in which the priest, deacon and sub deacon sat. Behind the churchyard is the old rectory. Return to the main road and cross into Back Street. Bear right and note the plaque on the wall of the cottage, right, which tells of the great floods of 1657 and 1892, when a wall of water swept down the main street. The Methodist chapel, right was built 1874, with the old school next door. Sir Tatton Sykes erected the monument on the triangular green at the junction. This is a stone column topped by a cross. On one side of the column the statue of a bishop probably depicts Peter de Langtoft; this celebrated scholar, born in Langtoft in the 1300’s, wrote many learned manuscripts, including a chronicle of England in French verse and became a Canon of Bridlington Priory.

L into the main road then L Kilham, driving between the rolling chalk hills where the landing lights for Cottam airfield were sited. Enter Kilham West End then turn L into Chapel Lane and R, A 165 Bridlington. At the end of the village fork L along Woldgate and back into Bridlington. Turn L to return to the Scarborough Road roundabout, having experienced the many changing facets of “Mother Nature’s Patchwork Quilt”. © GMH

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