I’ve been running and exploring the local moors and woods since moving to Great Ayton in 1973

I thought I knew every nook and cranny but today I came across this brick structure on Ayton Bank. Quite chuffed, I feel I’ve made a major discovery. It looks like a water tank or cistern. There is a date scratched on the brickwork of 1952 but I think that is just graffiti. More likely the tank dates from the early years of the 20th-century when the water supply to the Friends’ School and Cleveland Lodge was expanded. The school and lodge had an independent supply from a dam on Dikes Beck but eventually, this silted up necessitating the expansion to collect springs below the moor’s edge. Some modern polypropylene water pipe is nearby suggesting that the spring is still in use, probably for agricultural use, but judging by the large crack the brick cistern has long since been disused.
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