Posted by: sweetpea | April 16, 2007

Wharram Percy and Thixendale


Yesterday I went for a walk in the Yorkshire Wolds with a few friends.  Annabel picked me up just after 9am and we set off alongthe winding roads (to avoid Stamford Bridge roadworks) to the car park at Wharram Percy,, where we were to meet the others.  We arrived early so had time to sit and enjoy the morning sun whilst Ferdy (Annabel’s 8yr old) explored the nearby patch of woodland.  It wasn’t long before he’d fallen into a patch of stinging nettles, so I played nurse with some dock leaves and we soon managed to reduce the pain.

Once we’d all arrived, we headed down to the abandoned medieval village of Wharram Percy, of which only the church (minus roof) and a row of cottages remain.  The Church was quite interesting in that you could see evidence in the different stages of building from the different shaped windows, and they’d used some old gravestones in parts where they’d had to rebuild in the past.  Unfortunately I didn’t read the information board as it was in the sun and I wanted to take advantage of the shade!

After the obligatory group photo we headed up to walk along the top of one of the wolds towards the village of Thixendale.  I never think to go walking with mum in the Wolds, but they are really beautiful so I shall have to remember next time she is visiting.  We watched a farmer ploughing his field in the distance, and a pair of lapwings calling “pee-witt” and performing their aireal display.  There was a field of cows in the distance, and as we approached and crossed a stile we noticed that they were all walking towards the fence corner lower down, and lining up along the fence.  It was quite amusing to see them behave so regimented, although we couldn’t figure out quite why that corner of the fence was so desirable.


We stopped for lunch just before Thixendale, and then stopped for tea, cakes and ice cream in the village.  Given that it was such a lovely sunny day I opted for the ice cream and headed to one of the little shops in the village.  It was a quaint little place hidden at the back of a house, an elderly couple had set up the little shop I assume to take advantage of visiting tourists.  I had a mint magnum, and it was just the perfect thing to cool me down a little whilst I read a bit about the history of the village. 

From Thixendale we started to head back towards Wharram Percy, this time the walking was a little tougher as there were a few uphill sections, but nothing too strenuous.  Then it was just a matter of walking back along the top of the valley to the car park.  We passed the cows again, in fact I think they were actually bullocks, but by now they had dispersed themselves a little and were resting.  We saw the lapwings again, but this time they had been joined by a third, I wish I’d packed my bins for the walk, it’ll teach me not to leave them at home again!  Once we were on the home stretch I went on ahead as I’d had enough of the sun beating down on my head and needed to be in the shade.

Despite it being a little too hot for my liking, I will need to get myself a hat for next time, it was a lovely walk through some beautiful chalk grassland scenery.




  1. hello again 🙂

    I keep meaning to drive out to Wharram Percy. I saw it on the map a few months ago as it’s described as an abandoned mediaeval village and I was intrigued! I’ll get around to it some point this summer.
    I’ve been in contact with the council and I’m going out to meet the site secretary for Bustardthorpe lotties on Sunday to see about getting a plot. Looks like it’ll be hard work though as he said some of the plots haven’t been used in 30 years :-O


  2. Hi Rach

    Hope all goes well on Sunday. I’m sure there are some advantages to plots that haven’t been used in 30 yrs although I can’t think of any right now. But don’t be put off if it does look hard work, just tackle a little bit at a time, and cover as much as possible of the reminder with some form of weed supressant (membrane, black plastic etc.) to help kill off the weeds. I’ve had part of my plot covered for a couple of years now, and it is bare earth underneath now although I know there are weed seeds in there that will germinate at the slightest opportunity!
    I’ve had my plot for about 5 years now and I’ve still only dug over about a third of it, although I do use the areas covered with weed supressant for growing my squashes. Every year I dig over a couple of new beds so that I can look back at the end of the year and feel that I am gradually achieving my end goal of cultivating most of the plot whilst hopefully leaving a small area for the wildlife.

    Good luck and I’d be interested to hear how you get on.

    SP x

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