Yorkshire Arboretum

So, thanks to Groupon, I have discovered a little (well quite big) gem, only 30 mins from my house- the Yorkshire Arboretum. It’s basically at Castle Howard for anyone semi local. It’s absolutely beautiful.  

We took Elvis but could not explore all of it due to his gammy leg as it is a huge 120 acres! 

The trees in the Yorkshire Arboretum come from all around the world, and started with a collection of trees purchased in 1979 from Hillier Nurseries, in Hampshire. 

Many trees were grown from seeds brought back by collectors, many from the 19th century. I like the fact that there is a map and they are all labelled. 

Lots of the trees are ‘reserve’ trees for Kew Gardens, in case rare trees there are damaged or affected by disease. 

I also enjoyed some of the lovely flowers….

And I can highly recommend the cafe as well. It’s all dog-friendly (have to be on leads in places) and basically smashing. We will be going again soon!

Clifton ings

So in a break from crafting I am delighted to be able to walk on Clifton ings again after the floods! The flowers are all back out and it looks like a beautiful meadow again! Elvis was also pleased. 

The ings has a fascinating history including being a racecourse, and the site of the North Riding Pauper Lunatic Asylum (what a grim name!) 

The hospital was opened in the 1840s and a chapel was added in 1873. This is still there:


The hospital apparently closed in the 90s…

In 2014 the ings became a site of special scientific interest due to all the wildlife: 


There’s a small green beetle called the tansy beetle which only lives there:

I’m not too good with insects though so I don’t really spend my time looking for it! I’m just glad to have such a lovely place 5 minutes away!

The Plague Stones of York

So for those non Yorkians I thought I would share a little piece of the history of York: plague stones. I knew about these when we moved as we live near one – the Burton Stone.  

This is situated outside the Burton Stone pub in Clifton. It is believed to be the base of an ancient cross but was used during the plague to complete transactions with coins. Plague victims put their coins to pay for things in the recesses which were filled with vinegar. They thought this would stop infection via the coin. Actually it might have done I’m not sure, vinegar is pretty antiseptic. 

Photo: Jorvik.co.uk

We were fascinated the other day whilst walking our little pup, to find another one! This time the Hob Moor stone. 

The taller stone in the right is a very weathered effigy of a knight. You can just make out his shield. 

How interesting…….