When Roseberrye Toppinge weares a cappe …

Towards the weste there stands a highe hill called Roseberry Toppinge, which is a marke to the seamen, and an almanacke to the vale, for they have this ould ryme common,

“When Roseberrye Toppinge weares a cappe
Let Cleveland then beware a clappe.”

For indeede yt seldome hath a cloude on yt that some yll weather shortly followes yt not, when not farre from thence on a mountayne’s syde there are cloudes almoste contynually smoakinge, and therfore called the Divell’s Kettles, which notwithstandinge prognostycate neither good nor badde.

So wrote an ‘H. Tr.’ in a letter to Sir Thomas Chaloner around the turn of the 17th-century. It was printed in the book The Topographer and Genealogist Volume II, dated 1853.

Well, there was no thunderclap today. Not even drizzle. The old rhyme failed. In fact, the low cloud had cleared by lunch and there were blue patches in the sky, by which time I was back at home.

For those interested in industrial archaeology, the cutting in the foreground is the old narrow gauge tramway from the Roseberry Ironstone Mine to the sidings of the standard gauge of the Great Ayton Branch Railway via an incline down through Newton Woods.
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