The Stone House

You would have thought that a structure dating back to at least the 18th-century and of sigifnicant historic value to be Grade II listed by Historic England would be cherished and looked after1Historicengland.org.uk. (2012). THE STONE HOUSE (AT NGR NY 736 047), Ravenstonedale – 1326760 | Historic England. [online] Available at: https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1326760?section=official-list-entry [Accessed 26 Jun. 2022]..

Interior view — the corner of the carving referred to in the text is just visible behind that rusty steel sheet on the left.

But not so, this manmade cave on Ash Fell overlooking Ravenstonedale is being used as a dump for redundant fencing and other farming materials. I had to don my overtrousers to wade through the sea of nettles guarding the entrance, only to find access inside impossible.

Inside, the large room, 10’x20’x8′ high, is described as a “byre” “sufficiently capacious to contain six cows”.

Historic England also records that, on the inside on the rear wall, is a carving with the date 1720 on large shield and the inscription:

John ) Margt) Milner
Mich: (Haern?)snipp Fecit

As well as Milner, a local source refers to the name Knewstubb on the engraving2Cumbria Local History Federation. Bulletin 85 -Spring 2021. (n.d.). Page 24. [online] Available at: https://www.clhf.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Bulletin-85-final.pdf [Accessed 26 Jun. 2022]..

Outside the nettles, a clear sign for sure of man’s presence, seem to cover a substantial quarried out area. There  are ruinous low walls suggesting it may once have been roofed.

In the distance is the 708m high Wild Boar Fell, a reminder of the 1977 Karrimor mountain marathon and also, on its lower slopes, a ski-orienteering competition — my, that was fun. I remember having great difficulty staying upright.

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