Out & About …

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

Category: Roseberry Topping

  • Elfi The Dwarf — The Story Told at Ye Sign of the Fox & Hounds, Urra

    Elfi The Dwarf — The Story Told at Ye Sign of the Fox & Hounds, Urra

    The notion of transcribing these ancient folk tales of Richard Blakeborough, thought to be a splendid idea at first, an idea born during the Covid lockdown, now gnaws at my conscience with growing unease. Recent reports detailing the modification of Roald Dahl’s cherished works, altering words deemed offensive and rewriting character descriptions in an attempt…

  • Roseberry Topped Reflection

    Roseberry Topped Reflection

    I recently read an article about the ecology of puddles, revealing their significance as habitats for certain invertebrate species. These small, transient pools offer a refuge from larger predators and competitors due to their isolated and short-lived nature. Many of these puddles hold high conservation value, housing rare specialist creatures. Noteworthy examples include the fairy shrimps…

  • The Scars of Jet Mining on Roseberry Common

    The Scars of Jet Mining on Roseberry Common

    A casual remark recently brought my attention to this stretch of barren spoil heaps nestled just beneath the col between Roseberry Topping and Little Roseberry. This scarring owes its existence to the extraction of jet, a prized black rock revered for millennia, but especially gaining favour after Queen Victoria took to wearing it in mourning…

  • 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…

  • Post-Brexit Changes in Hedgerow Protection

    Post-Brexit Changes in Hedgerow Protection

    Wood Lane — the historical name of the track along which most folk climbing Roseberry Topping will approach the hill. Before the hard graft begins. It looks as though the hedgerows on either side of the track have recently been cut, most likely mechanically flailed. In order to be stockproof and to offer a diverse…

  • The Price of Popularity—When stunning views become exploited gems

    The Price of Popularity—When stunning views become exploited gems

    I tend to avoid Roseberry summit on weekends. It’s bustling up there, not my cup of tea. I crave the sweet solitude of the hills. But these days, being out in the countryside is like the coolest thing to do. Blame it on the pandemic or whatever, but it’s not like the old days. Ah,…

  • Cockle Scar — where is the Cat Trod?

    Cockle Scar — where is the Cat Trod?

    Best viewed on the approach from the direction of Guisborough, Roseberry Topping boasts a conspicuous shelf around the 200-metre mark called Cockle Scar. Like a tiered cake, it is the top edge of the sandstone stratum recognised by geologists as the Staithes Formation. In his memoirs, ‘Half a Century of Sport,’ Sir Alfred Pease, a member…

  • Looking down on the folly and a marcescent oak

    Looking down on the folly and a marcescent oak

    A disappointing coverage of snow. A mere smattering. I reckon we had slightly more down in the village, but the Cleveland Hills in the distance appear proper snow-clad. This delightful early morning view is looking down on the folly from the western side of Roseberry. An oak sapling, stubbornly holding onto its dried leaves, occupies…

  • From Stone Ruck to Roseberry: Though a Neolithic lens

    From Stone Ruck to Roseberry: Though a Neolithic lens

    The recognition of a clustering of rock-art sites around the perimeter of Scugdale has given rise to a hypothesis concerning a plausible ancient prehistoric route encircling the valley. This period corresponds to approximately 5,000 years ago, specifically the Middle Neolithic era, when Scugdale likely comprised a blend of thick woodland and the marshy vestiges of…

  • Twelfth Night — Vessel Cuppers and Rabbit Skins

    Twelfth Night — Vessel Cuppers and Rabbit Skins

    Shipwrecked twins, a lovesick duke, and fools making merry, Twelfth Night spins a tale of romance, laughter, mistaken identities into a midwinter’s dream. But long before Shakespeare penned his whimsical play, there was an age-old tradition associated with Twelfth Night, rooted in pagan customs and echoed across Britain for centuries – wassailing. The purpose is…