Out & About …

… on the North York Moors, or wherever I happen to be.

Category: Aireyholme

  • Easby Moor from Roseberry Topping

    Easby Moor from Roseberry Topping

    The names Easby and Roseberry both derive from Old Scandinavian, but what did the Deiri tribe, nestled snugly between the Humber and the Tees rivers, call these places? Picture Deira as the precursor to Yorkshire, holding court in York. But Deira wasn’t a territorial area. It seems more like a robust dynasty. The exact genesis…

  • Celebrating Capt. James Cook

    Celebrating Capt. James Cook

    “Well there goes another February 14th. Evenings of whimsical sighs, chinking champagne glasses, and adoring compliments across the Pacific as indigenous folks send their thanks out to the Hawaiian cousins that took care of business, and finally put an end to the diseased, kidnapping, murderous, thieving invader called Captain James Cook.” So wrote Tina Ngata…

  • Silent Symphony of Sheep

    Silent Symphony of Sheep

    Head down against the driving rain, I sensed unseen eyes upon me. The fleeces of these Aireyholme sheep appeared as fresh as a perm, even after, or more likely because of, the overnight deluge. Despite dwindling numbers, sheep remain the predominant livestock on North York Moors farms. In 2016, the National Park boasted a staggering…

  • Roseberry Ironstone Mine — A Miner’s Day Begins

    Roseberry Ironstone Mine — A Miner’s Day Begins

    A significant anniversary in the history of Roseberry Ironstone Mine. It was on this day in 1921 that the men at the mine received notice to cease work with the mine due to be made idle at the end of the period of notice. In fact, output fell gradually until, in 1924, it stopped completely…

  • The Great Ayton Scallywags

    The Great Ayton Scallywags

    A certain topic that has occupied my thoughts for some time is an Auxiliary Unit Patrol that was stationed in Great Ayton during World War II. This covert unit differed significantly from the stereotypical ‘Dad’s Army.’ I recall hearing at some point that, in the event of a German invasion, the anticipated life expectancy for…

  • A Boxing Day Tradition — The Hunt

    A Boxing Day Tradition — The Hunt

    I chanced upon the Great Ayton Boxing Day Hunt today. A traditional affair, you know. Had completely slipped my mind. Christmas, a season steeped in tradition, yet this one leaves a sour taste. Every Boxing Day, the hunt assembles at the High Green in Great Ayton. Same old spectacle of well-appointed riders, splendid horses, and…

  • Aireyholme Lane — A trade route of the past?

    Aireyholme Lane — A trade route of the past?

    Descending Aireyholme Lane to the farm was like being part of a time-honoured ritual, with the sheep gracefully separating like the biblical Moses parting the Red Sea. The scene held an air of timelessness, as if this track had been used since the dawn of time. But one couldn’t help but wonder, when exactly was…

  • Winter’s last stand?

    Winter’s last stand?

    The brief return to Winter didn’t last long, but the last stubborn snow patches are hanging on for dear life on the fields of Aireyholme. But Roseberry Topping’s sandstone cap is clear, anxious to let go of winter fashion. Ah, Roseberry Topping, the hill that thinks it’s a volcano. With its unique shape, it’s the…

  • An echo of the past silenced as hawthorn trees are felled — a loss for nature and history

    An echo of the past silenced as hawthorn trees are felled — a loss for nature and history

    Three years ago I lamented on the felling of a patch of semi-open woodland on the southern flank of Roseberry Topping. It was a parcel of scattered trees, mostly Hawthorn, the felling of which was a significant loss, not only in terms of its wild beauty but also its ecological importance. Hawthorn trees provide food,…

  • A lesson for us all: beware of the tallyman

    A lesson for us all: beware of the tallyman

    A few scattered hawthorn trees mark the vestiges of an old hedgerow. Little Roseberry and Black Bank in the distance. The massive credit facility needed by our former Prime Minister has been making the headlines recently. A lifestyle that demands this amount of money ‘on tick‘ is incomprehensible to me. At the turn of the…