CB and I went out for another ride out in the car on Easter Sunday. This time we went by different roads to Swaledale, eventually joining the old road from Richmond over the hill to Fremington. A left turn then over the bridge and we reached Grinton, where the temporary traffic lights and a large ROAD CLOSED sign indicated that we still couldn’t go back to Richmond by the main road. The diversion was over the “tank road” to Leyburn, which we were to take later, but for now we took a right turn onto the Harkerside road. Harkerside is the hillside across the valley from Healaugh and Reeth. It has several prehistoric earthworks on both the hillside and the hilltop, High Harker Hill.
You can get a good view of the villages of Fremington, Reeth and Healaugh across the river from Harkerside. I love all the old stone houses in the Dales. You’ll see I did a 3 picture photo stitch of Healaugh, where I used to live. My old house is behind a tree almost right in the middle of the photo! I took the third picture of the three to include the stepping stones across the Swale - the ones I have no memory of whatsoever! Bewildering, that! The path to the riverside followed the wall to the right of the tree to the right of the village, and the stepping stones cross the river right at the bottom of the wall. I often used to take the river path back from work at Reeth, or the one through the fields starting from (or ending at) the half circle field on the right.
We also saw a grouse among the clumps of heather!
Crossing the bridge over the Swale, and reaching the main road again, I had to take this photo for my blogging friend, Katrina Stephen of Pining for the West! You’ve seen this sign or one not so far away, before, Katrina, but I always think of you when I see them! K stands for Kirby in this case.
We approached Healaugh from the west side this time, passing the farm where we used to buy raw milk straight from the cow back in the day. Bottles were left on the milking parlour window sill and we used to collect it and leave the money! I remember when they were feeding the cows with silage the milk always tasted strong. I didn’t like it at all then.
The answer was yes to both, but I only photographed the flowers! The notice on the wall thanks people for their charitable donations and advises that the money will go to various favourite charities of the villagers.
This is the cobbled square where the phone box is to be found. My old friend Gladys used to live in the house with the porch , only the porch and the section to the left of the left chimney are new (in the last 25 years. Fancy, Gladys has been dead for 25 years now. She was a real character). I had another little explore round the village and going up the lane behind the Old School, I found two houses I have no memory of at all! (Left of the photo behind the wall) I have no idea who lived there. Isn’t that strange? It’s a pretty lane though, and it comes out onto Shore Gill at the other end. I do recall going along it once or twice, and those houses must have been there all along!
Right in the middle of the village is a round-ish area of ground that is quite overgrown with grass and brambles. It’s not a flat field but is quite lumpy. I often wonder if under the hillocks you would find the ruins of old cottages. This was a busy area in the past and most of the men would have been lead miners. There could well have been more cottages in the village. Gladys used to say it was Johnny Gaunt’s castle, meaning I suppose, John of Gaunt! Why? I have no idea!
From Healaugh we drove on again to Reeth where I lived for a few months in Wee Cottage when I first moved to Swaledale. Reeth has had lots of changes over the last quarter century since I left there. For example, the cafe where we had a cup of tea was a private house when I lived there. What a great view it has over the village green to High Row, more commonly called The Cobbles, where most of the village shops were situated. It’s still a very busy village on a holiday weekend as you can see from the amount of cars parked on the green.
This is the grocery shop today in the low building in the centre. It used to be a garage for the folk at the Post Office, beneath the yellow banner. Peter and his mother, the postmistress, lived in the house above. Wee Cottage, not being far away, just round the corner from the white houses on the right, my cat, Tommy, used to come walking to the Post Office with me, sit outside waiting for me, then accompany me home again!
The house here was the house my mother liked best. Her Gingerbread Cottage, she called it! I remember watching a scene from All Creatures Great and Small being filmed in this lane, outside the white door of the building with the white gable! It was one of Christopher Timothy’s scenes.
Then this is a view over to the Congregational Church from Miss Heavyside’s garden, as it was! When I was a child I spent many Sunday afternoons in that church with my parents and the “aunties”, friends of Mother’s, when we came here for holidays. There was a Bible text over the arch in the apse, with which I used to play “eeny meeny miny mo” with the letters, instead of listening to the sermon! I can’t remember for the life of me now what that text was, but it was in large blue capitals with the initial letter of each word in red! Something like that!
It’s always nice to come back to Reeth and Healaugh. I hope you’ve enjoyed the visit too, and not minded my little memories! There must be hundreds more memories, but they’ll keep!
Talk again soon. I really have a lot to catch up with!