- Dales Trail 2019
Report and Photographs by John Gill, additional Photographs Julie Swales
The Dales Trail is our big charity run of the year, this year our
members chose to support Age UK, North Yorkshire and Darlington branch.
Adrian Lindop the local area manager came to our September club night to
give members a talk on the work carried out by the local branch. Age UK
offer a wealth of support to people over the age of 50. They offer home
visits, befriending services and an extensive range of good quality
activities which they publicise in their “What’s On” every three month,
the activities are held in their Northallerton branch on East Road
Northallerton, it operates like a drop in centre everyone over 50 is
welcome to call in.
The morning of the run dawn bright and sunny but disaster struck! I
could not get our MGB started, Jim Clark club member, our mechanical
genius was away for the weekend at the Rolls-Royce Enthusiasts’ Northern
Section annual weekend away along with some other members of our club so
was not available to get us proceeding as they say in the Rolls-Royce
world. We had to get the everyday car out and set off to the meeting
point, but we were nearly an hour late by this time so decided not to
follow the run but be ready to take pictures on the return of the cars.
We had 29 cars on the run which is not a bad number for our relatively
small club, as I noted earlier a number of our members are in other car
clubs and at this time of year there are bound to be clashes of events;
it should be noted that a number of members who could not make it on the
day donated generously to the charity beforehand.
The event started and finished at Romanby Golf Club in Northallerton it
is a marvellous setting for a game of golf but also a splendid venue to
host a classic car event. Tea and coffee were provided in the club house
and registration was handled by our very able club secretary Sheila
This year the organisers decided to head off east in the opposite
direction to the Yorkshire Dales and tackle the North York Moors (NYM)
for a change. The North York Moors became a National Park in 1952, it
covers an area of 554 square miles and has 26 miles of coastline. There
are 1408 miles of public Rights of way for the more active among us. The
highest point of the North York Moors is Urra Moor at a height of 1489
feet above sea level. The Moors contain the largest expanse of heather
moorland in England and Wales.
The NYM is a European Special Protection Area for Merlin and Golden
Plover and is internationally renowned as a haven for ground nesting
birds. The NYM is home to the most northerly colony of the Duke of
Burgundy butterfly and the southernmost place for the dwarf Cornel.
Woodland and forest cover 22 percent of the National Park and has one of
the largest concentrations of ancient and veteran trees in North
There are 700 scheduled monuments within the NYM and around 3000 listed
buildings. There are 1500 boundary stones and crosses in NYM area. Lila
Cross is one of the oldest Christian monuments in England dating from
You can see from the above that we were in for a treat with such
beautiful scenery, wildlife and ancient buildings, a perfect setting for
some classic cars.
The route took us from Northallerton to Osmotherly and past Cod Beck
reservoir running north over Battersby Railway crossing. Battersby
Junction was once famous as the start of the railway incline which was
used to bring wagons laden with ironstone down from Rosedale mines. The
incline was so steep (1 in 20 or 20%) that a pulley system was used the
weight of the descending full wagons being used to haul the empty wagons
up the incline.
We wended our way round to Rosedale Abbey, there has never been an Abbey
in Rosedale but between the 12th and 16th centuries there was a
Cistercian Priory on the site of the village. Rosedale is a picturesque
village with shops cafes and inns, a number of entrants stopped here for
a comfort break. We left Rosedale straight up Chimney Bank; this road
vies with Hardknott pass in Cumbria for the title of steepest road in
England with a gradient of 1 in 3. I am pleased to say all our cars made
it up the bank!
We drove ever onwards the next stop being Hutton-le-Hole, what is in a
name? The village was mentioned in the Doomsday book as Hoton with eight
resident families. The name has changed over the years from Hedge -
Hoton to Hoton under Hedge, Hewton, Hutton in the Hole and in the 19th
century Hutton-le-Hole, the derivative of the current name is not known
but is thought that Hole refers to burial mounds, the village boasts 29
Grade2 listed buildings. Ryedale Folk Museum is situated in the village,
this open-air museum has collections in historic buildings and portrays
rural local life from Iron Age to 1950s. The route took us into Kirby
Moorside and onto Helmsley we passed Yorkshire Gliding club and on to
Kilburn the home of the Mouseman. If you watch any of the Antique
programmes on BBC, you must be familiar with Robert Thompson. He was
born in 1876 the son of a carpenter, when his father died in 1895 Robert
took over the business, over the next 20 years he developed his skills
as a craftsman. He was influenced by the work of the medieval woodcarver
William Bromflet. By 1934 he had 30 craftsmen working for him producing
furniture which was ship all over the world. The famous mouse motif
first appeared in 1920. On the run back to the golf club we passed the
White horse which is carved into the hill side above Kilburn. It was cut
in into the rock in 1857, the limestone is not white so initially it was
whitewashed but is now covered in white stone chippings. During the war
it was covered over to prevent it becoming a target for German bombers!
Cars started arriving back at about three o’clock, we lined the cars in
a semi-circle in front of the club house and most crews had some
well-earned refreshment. After much discussion about the route, scenic
delights and wildlife we had enjoyed it was time for the presentations.
Our Secretary Sheila Mason awarded the prize for crew who had travelled
the greatest distance to get to the start of the event, in first place
by some distance, was Gordon Russell who had travelled 122 miles from
Nottingham in his MG TF.
Dave Simpson presented a cheque to Adrian Lindop from Age UK for
£659.10, this was an excellent result for our small club and all members
should, as Adrian said in his acceptance speech, be very pleased with
their efforts and give themselves a pat on the back.
Finally, thanks to Craig and all the staff at the Golf club for hosting
the event. Thanks to Bill Burton for doing all the printing which saves
us a significant sun of money and special thanks to Tony and Sheila
Mason for devising such a superb run.