Welcome to 'Kelly's Guide'...
A sort of Bill Bryson's "Notes from a Small Island," from a lovely Goathland Guest House instead! Here you'll find local information, news from the house, short tales and observations and anything else which springs to mind as I type.
Crikey, October has arrived already! I must play catch-up… At least we have reasons for the time flying – we’ve been busy! Weddings, galas, groups of walkers doing the Coast-to-Coast… September was a blur. The Autumn Steam Gala kept us busy during the last weekend of September, with a full house and dinner for a party of 13 on the Sunday night. The menu looked good, chicken, sea bass, beef and duck, followed by the biggest raspberry and white chocolate trifle I’ve ever seen! And brandy snap baskets and a hearty cheese board or two! And we have a busy house this weekend and then next weekend is the Railway in Wartime Weekend, and then… I can’t even begin to contemplate it. We have a list of outdoor jobs to get done before the winter weather – railings to sand and paint, the garden and veggie patch need some TLC and lots of tubs of flowers to get ready for winter planting.
We’re still holding onto some good weather, too. With the exception of some fog to start the day here and there, we’re seeing plenty of sunshine and it’s unseasonably warm during the day… just some grass frost overnight. Which means that the sweet peas keep coming and the calendulas keep blooming. It was our local Harvest Festival at St Mary’s on Friday night, and the colours out in the trees and across the moors make it look distinctly autumnal.
October seems set to be as busy as the last few months… there’s lots happening in the area, with the Railway in War time on the NYMR next weekend, Whitby Blues Festival, Rose & Brown’s Seaside Vintage Fair, East Yorkshire Thoroughbred Car Club displaying their vehicles at Goathland Station and Scampston’s Autumn Plant Fair, all to come! And as the month goes on, there are two new exhibitions at the Inspired By… Gallery at Danby, produce fairs at Castle Howard, MusicPort, Ryedale Book Festival, the Bram Stoker International Film Festival, loads of Halloween-themed events on the local railways and at local country houses and the Whitby Goth Weekend to top it off!
Our comprehensive ‘What’s On’ guide (find the link on our homepage), will help you plan your stay throughout the year… open air theatre productions at Castle Howard and Helmsley Castle? Art exhibitions at the moors centre? Afternoon tea on the Steam Railway? Take a look; it really is packed with great ideas. It never ceases to amaze me, how much there is to do throughout the year in the area. As though acres upon acres of moor land, miles of coastline, footpaths that criss-cross the area and link to the Lyke Wake and the Coast to Coast and views that can a take a day to of simply watching to fully appreciate, weren’t enough; there are farmers markets, agricultural shows, craft fairs, theatre productions, galas… Throughout August, you can catch a steam train on the Esk Valley line and enjoy great music and real ale whilst being whisked through stunning scenery. Or you can sit outdoors, enjoying a picnic, and watch open-air theatre in the middle of Helmsley Castle. And catch a steam train to Whitby and avoid all the hassle of parking in the town, arriving full of nostalgia for a bygone era and ready for fish and chips. I think I’ll spend the rest of the year pretending to be a guest!
You might like to know, for example, that if you've had a leisurely Saturday hopping on and off the NYM Steam Railway, eaten an ice-cream or two and whiled away an hour watching the sheep nibble their way up The Common, that you won't need to drive down to Whitby to enjoy fish and chips... Eskdale Fisheries in Sleights is a great spot, with picnic benches in the garden outside so you can enjoy fish and chips at their best - open, in paper, in the sunshine!
Ever heard about the little pub you just have to visit in Beck Hole? Just a mile from Goathland by car and little less to walk down the Rail Trail... The Birch Hall is one of the best and smallest pubs in Britain, complete with sweet shop and beer garden. Enjoy a 'Beck Hole Butty' and a pint of 'Beck Watter'!
Sandsend... glorious beaches, good coffee and cake at both 'Sandside' and 'Wit's End', art gallery, pub, a 'foodies' shop and just a couple of miles north of Whitby town centre. Perfect. But don't tell anyone else about it!
For fish and chips, 'The Magpie' is rightly famous. Cue the queues! Alternatively head over the swing bridge into the old town and keep to the right... you'll find Hadley's. It's good. And Fortune's own-smoked kippers (find them on Henrietta Street), can even be posted home for you.
For a walk from our doorstep, follow the Rail Trail down to Grosmont - head to the Geall's Art Cafe for coffee and cake to set you up for the walk back. Or pop into the Old School House Coffee Shop for a slice or scrumptious chocolate cake. And you can even cheat and catch the train back to Goathland Station.
One of our favourite 'drives' starts by heading out of Goathland towards Egton, then up through Glaisdale and on to Danby. If you're peckish en route, stop in Lealholm for a home-baked treat from the bakery and enjoy it whilst looking at fantastic views towards the North Sea. Beyond Danby you'll find Castleton before circling back towards Hutton-le-Hole. Stop off at the Red Lion at Blakey Ridge for a spot of lunch or just a cheeky drink. By Hutton-le-Hole you might need to stretch your legs around the shops and if you forfeited lunch after your hearty Fairhaven breakfast, head to the Blacksmith's at Lastingham for an early dinner and then head towards Pickering for a straightforward drive back to Goathland, or towards Stape for a more adventurous route across the top of the moors!
What's happening now?
And what’s happening right now? Well, we’ve got guests out exploring the village, some exploring the coast from Saltburn to Staithes and some playing up and down the railway line. They might get back here in time to enjoy a slice of orange & coconut cake with a quick cuppa before dinner… The Fox & Rabbit at Lockton and The Black Bull at Ugthorpe for those venturing out of the village.
Tempted to join us? I hope so. We’d love to hear from you once you’ve got some dates in mind… sit, walk, snooze, explore, cycle, climb, catch a train, hop on the Coastliner, catch up with that book you’ve been meaning to read since you unwrapped it at Christmas, eat, drink and be merry… Well, I can think of worse ways to spend a few days! And few places better than here to spend them…