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Lion Inn
Great Broughton
Bracken enclosed path in Douthwaite Dale
Above Douthwaite Dale looking down the grassy path (not taken) and bracken to Barmoor Lodge.

The day starts with fields and lanes before a grassy track leads into Gillimoor village. Hutton-le-Hole (the prettiest village in the North Yorkshire Moors) is reached by a very interesting crossing of Douthwaite Dale and the River Dove. A footpath across the fields and a country lane then takes you to Lastingham. Plenty of lunch spots with a pub in Gillimoor and tea-rooms in Hutton-le-Hole.

Kirkbymoorside Type Phone
Appletree Court B&B 01751 431536
Croft House B&B 01751 431501
George and Dragon Hotel 01751 433334
Kings Head Hotel Hotel 01751 431340

Leave from the centre of Kirkbymoorside along a passageway just across the road from Appletree Court. This curves to the left past the cemetery and over a stile into a horse paddock. Another stile at the far side of the paddock leads to a field path that emerges on Park Lane. Turn right to climb up the lane through two gates and cut across the right-hand field diagonally after the second gate back to the lane. At the next lane junction, turn left into the intriguingly named Back of Parks Road and walk up to a bridleway sign on your right. Take this broad green track down to a junction where you turn left for a few metres and onto a thin overgrown track on the right. This soon merges with a wider track - turn left and keep straight ahead to a gate and field.

Follow the pleasant grassy track (known as Shepherd's Road) with Hagg Wood on your left and the River Dove in the valley to your right. The track enters Hagg Wood and climbs steeply for a short distance on a sunken path. Depart the path when it leaves the woods and curves left. Head instead to the stile in the upper left corner of the field. A field path goes through an enclosure, into a village cricket field and ends on Woodhead Field Lane. Turn right into Kirkby Lane and then right again into the High Street of Gillimoor beside the Royal Oak pub. The pub serves food and has good beer.

Walk along the wide High Street to the Gillimoor church (St. Aidan's). The church is fairly ordinary (mostly nineteenth century) but the "Surprise View" from the churchyard over Douthwaite Dale has been famous since the twelfth century. A permissive grass lane drops down from the right of the church to Gillimoor Mill Lane. Alternately follow the main road past the church and down to the entrance to the lane. Head down the lane to the mill where the footpath passes to the left behind the mill house with footbridges over the mill leat and the River Dove. After the river, cross a stile into the next field and follow the hedge to the next stile. This leads into a paddock in front of Grouse Hall where the path crosses a farm access track to a stile and a footbridge at the far side of the next field.

Hutton-le-Hole Type Phone
Barn Hotel Hotel 01751 417311
Burnley House B&B 01751 417548
The Crown Camping (book in advance) 01751 417343
Hammer and Hand B&B 01751 417300

Cross one grass track and then scramble to a second one with a fenced field on the right. Walk about 40 metres down the track towards Barmoor Lodge and depart on a thin path on the right (see the photo at the top of the page). Head south-east through the bracken to the meeting of a fence and wall. Over the stile into the next field and then a hedge-lined track to Keld Lane. Turn right to enter the pretty village of Hutton-le-Hole. This village is popular with photographers and artists with its wide greens spread above the babbling Hutton Beck. A must-see is the Ryedale Folk Museum near the Crown pub. This offers a unique perspective into the life of the dale in its fascinating outdoor museum. Many old buildings have been moved here, restored and preserved. These include two cruck houses, a manor-house, barns, a fully-equipped blacksmith's shop, a saddler's, a wheelwright's, a glassworks and a foundry.

Lastingham from Victoria Cross
Lastingham from Victoria Cross.

Leave this enchanting village by a signposted footpath at the far end (just over Fairy Call Beck). The path crosses a field with the beck to your left and through a gate into the next field. Climb steeply up Austin Head through the trees to a clearing and then head left up to a stile into a hedged lane. Turn left and then immediately right over a stile onto an overgrown sunken path. There is better walking after a barn on your right where the path opens out and continues with a wall to your left and a fence on the right. There are fine views from this high traverse. Waymarkers lead through the farmyard of Grange Farm onto Spauntons Lane where you cross diagonally right to the wide street through Spaunton village. There is a road junction at the far end of the village. A short detour up the path on the corner brings a good view over Lastingham from a cross commemorating the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria (1897) and a seat marking Queen Elizabeth II's 1952 coronation.

An unofficial path drops directly down to the lane and into the village near the church. However a more scenic and official route is to return to the lane junction and cross over to a signposted footpath. This goes steeply down an attractive wooded gully into Lastingham. This is an interesting village with its best known feature hidden in the church - a unique crypt beneath St. Mary's Church. This was built in 1078 as the first step in reconstructing a monastery founded by St. Cedd in 654 AD but destroyed a raid by Danes in the ninth century. The monastery was never built but the crypt has remained essentially unchanged.

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