Looking forward to snow

We saw our first snow of the winter today. We reached the top of the path to the Wainstones above Bilsdale, and turned to admire the view towards Bransdale. There it was, a light sprinkling of white on the tops.

That reminded me of the last time we were at St Aidan’s in the snow, in January 2016. 

We went for a walk up to Cowhouse Bank. 

The tracks are from an all-terrain buggy that was in front of us, with three generations of one family aboard. OK, I’ll admit to buggy envy.

It was a perfect day, cold and bright. The silence lay like a blanket on the landscape.

Timber stacked at the side of the path had that newly sawn wood smell.

As evening fell it turned bitter cold and the light went quickly. Suddenly it felt like a good time to leave, and we hurried back.


Looking forward to snow again.

Bike ride, and 5k trail run in the North York Moors

Easy-peasy bike ride in the North York Moors

We appreciate a good scenery/effort ratio for a bike ride and the Sutton Bank National Park Centre made a great starting point earlier this year.  It’s perfect for a holiday outing or for families - or even if you can’t remember the last time you got on two wheels! 

Starting out at Sutton Bank

No lycra was worn for the expedition and we just used our everyday bikes that are ok with a bit of bumpy ground. You can hire proper mountain bikes from the Sutton Bank Bike centre.

 We followed the blue route from Sutton Bank and it was beautifully signposted all the way. There is a little riding on the road but there’s not a lot of traffic.

Back offroad, ride down the side of a field and arrive at a gate to go through onto the cliff at Sutton Bank.

This is what you see when you get through the gate. It's a great ride back along the edge.

Easy-peasy Trail Run in the North York Moors

The Rabbit Run is only 5k and perfect for Park Runners who’d like to try trail running.

Runners eagerly contemplating the moorland route at the start

Runners eagerly contemplating the moorland route at the start

It started at the Moors Centre at Danby, organised by the North York Moors National Park and the HardMoors folk. Mums and Dads, kids, park runners, tri athletes,  serious runners - everyone had a great time.

Of course I only stopped to take a photo of the wonderful scenery. Nothing to do with being out of breath

Of course I only stopped to take a photo of the wonderful scenery. Nothing to do with being out of breath

The organisers did a great job, and there will hopefully be more in 2016.

Historic artefact from the North York Moors

Historic artefact from the North York Moors

Baltic Gothic

One of the first things we discovered when we started renovating St Aidan's was that it had been designed by an architect called Temple Lushington Moore.

We’d never heard of him either ;) but to our astonishment, it turned out that this little church was designed by a young man who went on to become 'arguably the greatest of the Victorian Gothic Revival church architects”, according to Gavin Stamp.

Even more amazing, the North York Moors are full of his work. Clearly we had to find out more, and the slightly obsessive research that followed led to the Temple Moore Trail. 

Temple Moore Trail

Last year we got an email from the owners of a watercolour dated 1884, signed Temple Moore. It was of a church –  could we identify it, they wondered? 

At that point the anwer was no, but the challenge was on. The date on the painting meant it had been done early in Moore’s career, the same year he married. In 1884 he was still holding together the remnants of George Gilbert Scott Jrs. practice*, as well as working on his own early commissions. We also knew from Geoff Brandwood's book that Moore had been on a tour of the Baltic in 1883, where he did a lot of sketching, so that was an obvious line of enquiry.

Much internet searching of images followed and the painting was finally identified. It was St Jakobi in Luebeck, built in 1300. This was very satisfying!  Moore must have worked up one of the many sketches he made on his tour of the Baltic, once he was back home. 

It was fascinating to see how directly theBaltic Gothic churches that he sketched as a young man influenced Temple Moore’s work decades later. I've always liked thechurches at Middlesbrough and Scarborough on the Temple Moore Trail, but didn’t realise where Moore got his references from for these big brick urban churches.

St Columba in Scarborough, and St Cuthbert and St Columba in Middlesbrough look straight back to the Baltic Gothic brick churches from the 13th century. Temple Moore kept the memory of what he saw and sketched in 1883 for many years. We don't have the tradition of the brick gothic here in the UK and the reference is likely hidden from most people, but in these urban churches Moore was re-imagining the form of the Baltic Gothic churches from the 12th and 13th centuries.



St Jakobi