Jo’s Monday walk : Ma Shipton’s Cave, Knaresborough

No doubt about it- street art is alive and well in Knaresborough.  Perhaps you remember my interrupted visit earlier this year, when I discovered it’s many windows?  Recently I was able to return to collect a few more, determined to make it to the other bank of the River Nidd this time.  Leaving the town and castle perched high over the river, let’s get down to Waterside.  The weather isn’t any better than last time, but still it’s a beautiful scene.

Despite the dullness of the day, people are still messing about in boats, and marvelling at the antiquity of this town.  Did you read the Old Manor House plaque?  The chequerboard building is an extraordinary sight.

Let’s cross over High Bridge.  When compared with the Railway Viaduct, it isn’t very high at all.  On the far shore Knaresborough Forest once provided hunting grounds for royalty.  My target today is Ma Shipton’s Cave.  Open since 1630, this is said to be England’s oldest visitor attraction.

Past the ghouls and into the woodland we go, following a winding path.  Through the trees I can just make out the rushing weir, more audible than visible.  Once a mill wheel turned on the opposite bank, where today smart residences overlook the river.

I wondered why the tree was so sad.  Perhaps it was the youngsters hammering coins into the coin tree.  Or maybe it was missing former friends here on Beech Avenue, site of some of the tallest beech trees in the country, dating back to 1739.

As it’s school holidays I shouldn’t be surprised to find several characters awaiting me in the woods.  Maid Marian was particularly charming.  Not so sure about the Sheriff!  He seemed to be guarding the entrance to the cave and the petrifying well.  A strange place, if ever I saw one.

If you read the signboards you will realise what an extraordinary character was Mother Shipton.  Born in this cave in 1488, as she grew older her prophetic visions inspired awe and fear.  She foretold both the invasion and defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588, and the Great Fire of London in 1666.  The Petrifying Well is a unique geological phenomenon, where cascading water turns everyday objects into stone.  More details, including how to get here, can be found on www.mothershipton.co.uk.

There’s definitely an atmosphere in those woods and I felt lucky to escape the wrath of the Sheriff.  Happily there was a very nice establishment where I could get my breath back.  I hope you enjoyed walking with me.

Thanks for your company everyone.  Blue skies have definitely changed to grey here, but we’ll put the kettle on and keep smiling.  Lots of lovely walks to share this week.  Please do visit, especially if there’s someone you don’t know.  Join me anytime on Jo’s Monday walk.

Let’s start with Cathy, because I missed her out last week.  A sad story, but some stunning scenery :

Dead Horse Point State Park

Liz and I share a love of the Algarve, but here’s somewhere else we both know and like :

My Monday Walk in Ludlow

Eunice enjoys a blue sky walk in her local English countryside :

Repeating a Rivington ramble

Why not enjoy a relaxed lakeside stroll with Alice, in South Carolina?

Jarvis Creek Park

Or join Janet in the peace and beauty of her watery world :

Monday walk…the first lake

You know I love a sunrise.  Rupali watches it rise in a special place :

Sunrise over the Charles Bridge in Prague

While Artfulinguist lingers over sunset in the most beautiful of bays :

15 minutes at Sidney Pier

Lady Lee is off to the Philippines soon and will be so happy to be home with Mum :

Ten Things of Thankful

Colline joins us with a spectacular firework display from the Eiffel Tower- don’t miss it!

First Walk Down the Champs Elysees

While Geoff and Dog pace out the bridges of London.  An excellent way to exercise!

Bridging The Gap #walking#london#thames

Poor Mel has had a rough time up till now, but there’s finally a reward for all the effort :

Day 4 Via Francigena, Verres to Pont Saint Martin, 19km

More serious hikers, meet Patrick and Paige, and the butterfly socks!

Mount Assiniboine

Nadine gamely carries on, and reminds me what a very beautiful part of the world I live in :

Day Two on the Pennine Way : Torside to Standedge, 12miles

Finishing off with more rugged and beautiful terrain with our Cathy :

The Upheaval Dome Hike in Canyonlands

That’s it, folks!  Enjoy, and I’ll see you all next week.  Take care till then.  Almost forgot to link to Sami at Monday Mural!

171 comments

  1. Knaresborough is my old stomping ground – just down the road from my dads’! Always love a walk round the castle followed by nice cup of tea and a scone overlooking the river there xx 🙂

    1. I had only the vaguest memories too, Lisa. Like most things, it’s more commercialised now, but definitely an atmospheric spot. Many thanks to you. Be with you soon 🙂 🙂

  2. Very, very nice as usual. Love those old stone bridges. We don’t see many (if any) of those around here. Not so sure about Ma Shipton’s Cave.

    1. A bit creepy, isn’t it? Maybe I should just say atmospheric. 🙂 🙂 Many thanks to you, Gunta. Sunny but cold this morning and heavy rain on the way 😦

  3. I was going gaga over the street art but then we came to the boats. I feel as though I walked into a post card Jo. So incredibly gorgeous. Shall we go for a ride?

  4. What a lovely place darling, it’s so colourful and full of magical tales. The street art is fab and I love the ‘petrified’ things, the north is becoming increasingly appealing, there’s so much to see! x:-)x

  5. Mother Shipton sounds like an extraordinary woman to me. I’d love to know more about her. And I truly believe and understand you when you say there is an atmosphere in those woods. Isn’t it neat that in each different place you visit and walk around that each have their own special feeling to them?

    1. I’ve certainly visited my share of different places this past year, hon. I do like variety and it will probably be one of the things I miss most when we move to the Algarve. 🙂 🙂

  6. Love those windows Jo! And I also do love to mess about on the river. The caves look fun too. So yes, I enjoyed my walk with you very much, thank you lovely 🙂 xxx PS

  7. It may have been a gray day, but those vibrant colors–I love the boats!–really make a lovely setting. Your walks take us to the most picturesque “unknown to me” places, Jo. I loved this. I’d be just fine with the weather, I guarantee you. 🙂

    1. There will be lots of wonderful places to look back on when I’m in the Algarve, Debbie. And still so many I haven’t made it to. 🙂 🙂 I really was born to live in a gypsy caravan. Yes, you’d relish the damp air!

  8. Think we almsot crossed paths…we were there just about 10 days ago! Typically, we bought lots of amazing beef from an incredible butcher in the town, some of which is just simmering away right now in a Burmese curry!

  9. Wow, Jo, I went down a bit of a rabbit hole there reading about all these hardy souls following long distance trails. And Patrick and Paige absolutely terrified me! “Scree slope” and “glorious” are NOT terms I associate with each other. As for your own post, I was relieved to re-enter gentle tranquillity. It’s lovely.

    1. I know my limits, Anabel, and I get less sure-footed as the years go by. Full of admiration for those who can, though 🙂 🙂 Thanks for your company, hon!

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