Saturday, 25 October 2008

Wonderful Wensleydale

We just had a lovely break in Yorkshire, courtesy of Sykes Cottages. I hope all their properties are as good as that - our cottage was wonderful. We arrived to find new laid eggs, milk, teabags, home-made marmalade and a tray of cakes waiting for us!

The weather was utterly appalling, and I didn't take that many photos due to the rain. But here are the ones we did manage to get between us.


We arrived in heavy rain on Monday.

Hills and sheep - the view from the kitchen window, out the back of the cottage [longe and kitchen upstairs, to give best views]


IM002882 Hills, sheep, hens and the Settle-Carlisle Railway line. The view from the lounge window at the front.Taken in a brief moment when the sun was shining!

IM002884 On Tuesday we went across to Windermere. Bob [the saint] thought I would like a trip to the Lakeland Flagship Store!

Here is the Lambrigg Wind Farm. I love these wind turbines, I think they are amazing and graceful constructions.

We got a few Christmassy bits and some baking bits in the shop, then decided toIM002886 eat our picnic in the park.

Here is a picture of Bob eating his pie from Greggs, sitting on the seat, while Charlie watches me suspiciously. What is not clear here is that it was actually raining when I took this photo. Five minuets later we dashed back to the car, because we were being pelted with hailstones!

IM002887 We drove on to Hawkshead, on a quest to find a pair of trousers to fit Bob. No joy - but I loved this display of baskets outside one of the shops.

IM002889 Poppi Red served wonderful tea [in mugs just like those in our Church Hall !]



IM002890 Bob's chocolate tiffin cake was flavoured with pieces of stem ginger. Gorgeous. William Wordsworth went to school in Hawkshead.

The grocer's shop had wonderful ornamental gourds on sale.

I had to take a picture, they were so attractive.

Do people ever eat them, or do they just put them in attractive bowls as decoration?

IM002891 On Wednesday, weather remained poor. We lunched in the cottage and then went to nearby Sedburgh, which calls itself "England's Book Town" [Hay on Wye is in Wales, after all]

We'd taken some unwanted paperbacks with us, and managed to sell them off - and promptly spent the money on more books!


IM002892 Bob enjoyed a wonderful cream scone in a tea shop - run by two Leicester ex-pats!

On the way back we saw a fabulous road sign.

Does "Red Squirrels Drive Slowly" mean

Red squirrels DO drive slowly, or that

Red squirrels SHOULD drive slowly?

I suspect it actually means HUMANS should drive slowly so they do not run over the red squirrels. Not that we saw any squirrels,red or grey!

Thursday we went to Richmond.


It was cold and windy.The Castle was interesting. During WWI, conscientious objectors were imprisoned there.The treatment meted out to these men by our government was utterly appalling.

The "Richmond Sixteen" were actually secretly shipped to the Front Line in France, where disobeying the order to fight could be punished by death. In the end, however, this was changed to 10 years penal servitude.

In the display area, were extracts from the graffiti the men had writtIM002895en on their cell walls. I found it very moving.

From the castle, it is possible to see out over the town. Richmond is an elegant Georgian Market Town.

Also you can see a long way in many directions, toward York, Catterick etc.

Bob took a number of photos till the camera batteries ran out!

Gayle, the lady in the Museum Shop,

 IM002897 recommended the Cross View Tea Rooms as a good place for lunch.

She was absolutely right there. We enjoyed a splendid Beef Daube with Parsnip Crisps and 4 different veg!

John Wycliffe, one of my IM002899heroes, may have ended his days in Leicestershire- but he started life up in Yorkshire.

Bob spotted the plaque on the wall, next to the Building Society.


Charlie's arthritis appears to be getting worse.

He fIM002900ound it hard to walk any distance, and spent most of the holiday sleeping in the car or in his bed at the foot of the stairs, by the front door of the cottage.

Fortunately he does not appear to be in any distress.

He is about fourteen now, a good age for a collie.

As we drove out of Richmond, things went rather pear-shaped. Near a sign to the Tan Hill Inn [Highest Pub in England, where Everest have fitted solar panels to the roof, the TV ad keeps telling us] it was raining really heavily and the wind was very strong...and the windscreen wiper snapped.

We had to detour to Darlington [50 miles from the cottage!] to the nearest Skoda Agent, to try and get a replacement. They said they would have it by 8.30am Saturday! We drove very slowly, in appalling conditions, sans wipers, all the way back to Hawes.

By the grace of God, and Bob's good driving, we got home safely, and spent Thursday night listening to the wind and rain and watching Rachel Allen baking Scones on satellite TV. I did lots of knitting!

On Friday the rain had stopped,so we drove into Hawes for a wander round, and home-made soup in the Bay Tree Cafe [I had carrot, leek and ginger, Bob had tomato and parsnip] The little river that runs through the town was full and fast-flowing.


IM002904 Saw a wonderful cottage door

"AD 1688 - God being with us, who can be against us?"

We had planned to visit the Wensleydale Creamery, but it was closed to the public, owing to a Private Tour.

Well, never mind, another time, perhaps!

Originally Wallace and Gromit's favourite cheese was Wensleydale only because it made Wallace's face look "nice and toothy".

wngwensleydale_sm As it turns out  the Wensleydale cheese factory was struggling at the time and almost went into bankruptcy. The success of Wallace And Gromit brought the factory back from the brink and they are currently a thriving dairy!



IM002906 I took the picture of the Triumph because it was a lovely bike - but I was sorry its owner had parked in one of the Disabled Spaces in the Car Park.

Such behaviour gets bikers a bad name.


We left at 7.15 this morning, as dawn was breaking. I realised I had not taken a picture of our beautiful little retreat. Here it is, in the early morning light.

We got to Darlington by 9 and the wipers were sorted out. Which was good, because it rained as we came down the M1. Lunch in IKEA, where IM002911things were all geared up with half-term entertainments.

The chicken skewers, with harissa and couscous  were delicious.

I managed to get a photo of a man who is actually taller than Bob!!!

IKEA has some nice Christmassy stuff on display. I bought more pickles.

We finally got home around 2.30pm. It has been a lovely restful break, despite terrible weather, and the car crisis.

I'm feeling very relaxed, and greatly blessed. And very grateful,

Grateful to Janice for recommending Sykes Cottages, to Alison and Andrew, the owners of the cottage, to Bob for doing all the difficult driving, and to our Heavenly Father who has been with us and blessed us and kept us safe.

Now it is back to the daily rowing machine,

back to the diet, and

back to the relentless busy-ness that will fill the two months from now till Christmas.

Oh, and back with the clocks!


  1. What lovely photos! Thank you for sharing them! :)

  2. It looks like you had a really lovely break!

    Oh... and thanks for reminding me about the clocks ;)

  3. I am glad you enjoyed the photos - I am an appalling photographer- I managed to take one shot of out-of-focus clouds, and one of the mud at my feet - and another of my feet!!
    Picasa is a wonderful [free] piece of software which enables me to tidy up many of my errors with the camera.


Always glad to hear from you - thanks for stopping by!
I am blocking anonymous comments now, due to excessive spam!