Day 1. A short break in the Yorkshire Dales

We decided to spend a couple of days in Clapham, located just off the A65 in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.  After the previous day’s sunshine we were disappointed to be setting off in heavy rain but were hopeful that the weather would improve as we neared our destination.

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Cafe in the centre of Settle, North Yorkshire

Our first stop was to the charming small market town of Settle, surrounded by towering fells.  After parking the car we enjoyed cups of coffee in Ye Olde Naked Man along the high street whilst watching the rain beat against the cafe windows.

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Settle Market

Just as we were leaving, the weather improved and we crossed the road for a wander around the open air market which is held in the main square each Tuesday.  The market was smaller than usual because of the poor weather but there were several stalls still operating selling fruit and vegetables, flowers and cakes.

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The Folly Museum of North Craven Life

Next, we followed a sign to the small indoor market which is actually held inside the nearby Royal Oak pub where we found handicrafts, plants and flowers.  I’ve never seen a pub’s function room used for this purpose but it seemed to work well with the pub also offering special lunch deals on market days.

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Interior of The Folly Museum of North Craven Life

Continuing on our way, we headed over to the Folly Museum of North Craven Life which is located just a few minutes walk from the market place on what used to be the old main road through the town.  The impressive building was constructed in 1670 for a wealthy local lawyer and over the years it has had many owners and uses.  The museum is open each afternoon between 1.00-4.00 p.m. with standard admission costing £2.

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Knitted pictures of Settle in the Folly Museum

The galleries are on two floors and tell the story of local people and the dales landscape in which they lived.  Exhibits cover the area’s farming, quarrying and associated trades and it was interesting to compare practices carried out today with those in the past.  There’s also a gift shop which sells local handicrafts and homemade preserves plus a large cafe with an original inglenook fireplace which seemed popular when we visited.

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Settle Station Signal Box

On the way back to the car we called into the station yard to take a look at the Settle Station Signal Box which is now run as a small working museum.  It is dedicated to mechanical era railway signalling on the Settle – Carlisle railway and is open each Saturday between 10.00-4.00 p.m. admission free.  As we were there on a Tuesday, it was of course closed, but it’s somewhere I would like to visit one weekend and write about sometime.

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Giggleswick School

Back in the car, our next stop was in the neighbouring village of Giggleswick as we wished to visit the chapel at Giggleswick School.  The school was built in 1512 and received its Royal Charter from King Edward VI in 1553 and is now a co-educational boarding school.

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Giggleswick Chapel

We had heard about the school’s ornate chapel and that visiting was possible by pre-arrangement with the school office.  The Giggleswick estate covers a large area with the chapel being located in an elevated position along a narrow winding lane so it was suggested that we return to the car and drive there as it had starting raining again.

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Inside Giggleswick Chapel

Opening the heavy oak door, we entered the elaborate chapel which was built in 1897.  The building was designed as a Gothic structure with a dome decorated with mosaics depicting angels playing musical instruments.  No expense was spared fitting out the sumptuous interior with its marble floors, silver altar and pews made from imported Cypress wood.  If you are in the vicinity, I highly recommend a visit to take in the beauty of this stunning chapel.

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National Park sign on the outskirts of Clapham

It was then only a 7 mile journey to the village of Clapham where we had arranged to stay overnight at the New Inn.  We were warmly welcomed into the charming 18th century coaching inn and could see that it had been elegantly restored with its original oak beams and stone walls adding to its appeal.

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The New Inn, Clapham

The inn has 19 rooms and our spacious, executive room on the second floor was beautifully appointed.  The huge four poster bed and luxurious en-suite bathroom were so inviting and perfect for our short stay.

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Our room at the New Inn, Clapham

Before gong out to explore the village, we unpacked and made ourselves hot drinks from the hospitality tray which had some irresistible biscuits to keep us going until dinner.

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Hospitality tray in our room

Noticing that the rain showers had ceased, we set off for a walk through the village.  Running through the centre of the village is Clapham Beck which is crossed by a series of old stone bridges.  Stone cottages with slate roofs sit huddled together on each bank and are built from similar stone, with most of the properties dating from the 18th century.

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Old stone bridge crossing Clapham Beck

The village is located at the foot of Ingleborough, one of Yorkshire’s Three Peaks and is a popular starting point for its ascent.  Many hill walkers base themselves in the village for walking holidays but there are also plenty of activities and leisurely walks on flat terrain for those who prefer a more leisurely existence.  The village is served by a railway station on the Leeds to Morecambe line with Clapham station being situated one and a half miles from the village centre.

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Clapham Beck Waterfall

Since the 18th century, Clapham has been home to the Farrer family who established their Ingleborough estate.  The family trust still owns, and is responsible for much of the surrounding land, farms and cottages.

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The church of St. James, Clapham

At the head of the village stands the church of St. James which traces its history back to 1160.  Much of the original church was destroyed when Scottish forces invaded the village in the 14th century.  Only the original tower remains, with the majority of the building being the result of Victorian restoration work.  The church was open so we were able to spend a few minutes looking inside.

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Venison casserole with dumplings and red cabbage at the New Inn

Returning to the hotel, we had a short rest in our lovely room and then went down to the attractive bar for a pre-dinner drink.  The bar has been extensively renovated creating a casual yet elegant dining area.  The weather was cold and dreary outdoors but sitting by the wood-burning stove and enjoying the convivial atmosphere we felt warm and cosy.

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The cosy bar at the New Inn, Clapham

We could have eaten dinner in the 1745 Bistro but decided to eat in the bar as the menu was the same and we were comfortable there.  The New Inn specialises in fine dining and our starters of tiger prawns with linguine and Thai fish cakes tasted delicious.  To follow, we chose venison casserole topped with dumplings and pan fried hake cooked with bacon and fennel on a white wine butter sauce.  The combination of flavours and presentation were superb, offering excellent value for money.

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Our comfortable bed at the New Inn, Clapham

The Inn has an Australian owner who came over to chat to us and both he and his staff were very friendly making us feel very welcome.  After a lovely evening we went up to our room and slept like logs in our extremely comfortable four poster bed.

52 thoughts on “Day 1. A short break in the Yorkshire Dales

  1. Clapham looks lovely, shame about the rain, but at least it didn’t put you off enjoying your time there. Last time I went to Settle there was colourful yarn-bombing everywhere. I was in nearby Gargrave a couple of days back end of last week when the sun was still shining.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. What a great post. I love especially architecture You presented here. Giggleswick Chapel is gorgeous. Thank You. Are You visiting next summer my country? If yes, then take a look at the video, which gave the link, because, then You must experience something new in Finland.

    Have a wonderful day!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Sad to say, I couldn’t open the photos, but still enjoyed the post. The small world connection is that you mentioned North Craven and I live in New Bern, CRAVEN County, North Carolina. Now I’ll have to check out the connection. If you do come to the States, plan on visiting New Bern. It’s a charming town, and was the Colonial Capital of North Carolina. Governor Tryon was the first governor, I believe. Lots of water around here, since it’s the confluence of the Neuse and Trent rivers which made it a major win for the North during the Civil War.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Did a double take when I saw your photo of the naked man café – we passed it going through Settle last week. We got the rain in Blackpool, but we had the hot day in the Dales. Lovely post.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Hi, What a shame you were dogged by bad weather in Yorkshire. But it’s a huge and lovely county (the UK’s largest I believe?) Hurray for places like the cosy New Inn in Clapham, eh! The food sounded yummy. Obviously plenty to see and do….Onwards and upwwards. (Liked the name of the cafe Ye Olde Naked Man – trust you didn’t bump into him…) Cheers.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Even set amidst your consistently fascinating posts, this one stands out. I want to pack up and head to the Dales later today. I learned at least 20 things I didn’t know, including the word “beck,” from Old Norse (thank you, invading Danes). How can there possibly be a place as wonderfully named as Giggleswick? Note: here in the U.S., Few places built in the 18th century are termed “new” anything … unless they refer back to an original in an immigrant’s homeland! Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I do so love receiving your thoughtful comments on my posts and to know you find them of interest. Giggleswick is certainly a delightful name for a village and school and I should really have explained the term ‘beck’ but so glad you took the time to research it Brad.

      Like

      1. I just assumed that as a northerner (which you are, correct?), you inherently had beck in your vocabulary, and it hadn’t occurred to you that there were people who wouldn’t! A delightful word. As always, I learn a great deal from your posts, and simply can’t keep up with your torrid pace of publication. Thank you.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. travelrat

        Ingleborough Cave is the first-ever cave I ever toured. Gaping Ghyll is a pothole; only ‘open’ on Bank Holidays The local Cave Rescue Team will lower you into it for nothing … but it’ll cost you a fiver to be hauled back up! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

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