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.
Happy New Year! We said ‘goodbye’ to 2014 and ‘hello’ to 2015 with a bang… an ‘Italian feast’, Bucks Fizz and Prosecco, a quiz, fireworks and good company. Chicken cacciatore, Rack of lamb with oregano, basil, aubergines and tomatoes, Salmon-cut beef with porcini mushrooms, fresh herbs and smoked ham, Loin of pork with fennel, white wine and garlic, green salads, mozzarella, pine nut and tomato salad, sea salt and rosemary new potatoes, roasted fennel, tomato and spinach with white wine, a medley of fresh steamed vegetables and chunks of homemade ‘rolled and stuffed’ bread for dipping! Followed by pudding, of course… Italian chocolate cakes, Vanilla cheesecake with a forest fruit coulis, White chocolate and raspberry trifle with hazelnut and dark chocolate, cheese and biscuits and the biggest fresh fruit platter full of strawberries, raspberries, mango, blueberries, pineapple and pomegranate!
Next stop, back to the Winter Warmers, with some of our New Year guests extending their stay to include the weekend! Duck and sea bass seem to be the most popular at the moment, followed by our blackberry and apple cake… Do you think we have an unhealthy obsession with food?!
What can I say; our ‘Winter Warmer’ offer continues from now until the end of February and cook we must – the link from the homepage will show you sample menus and the tariff. And whilst our guests enjoy a well-earned break, we’ll be busy behind the scenes. The usual winter catch-ups beckon, with paintwork to be freshened in some of the bedrooms. Mum is also threatening to change the wallpaper in Room 7… it was the first room we decorated in November 2009, and it’d be fun to go wallpaper shopping again! Watch this space. As if by magic however, our guests will never know the work is taking place… we’ll be managing the diary to ensure that whether you’re sipping a whisky in front of the fire, enjoying a cuppa and watching the world go by, or enjoying a snooze in one of our lovely rooms, you’ll struggle to hear anything more disruptive than the baa-ing of one of Goathland’s resident sheep.
This time of year, after the buzz, excitement and pressures of Christmas and New Year celebrations, can seem a little… well, flat. And the damp, ok soggy landscape outside, can make you want to bury back under the duvet. But on the plus side, our long-range forecast says it’s going to be dry and crisp, just like winter ought to be! So if you’re thinking that you need to escape the floods, this might well be the best place to do it. Our What’s On guide will be fit to bust come the Spring, with events, fairs and shows, and the railway will be bustling again and lambs will be everywhere and everyone will fancy a break away from it all… But right now, it’s quiet, peaceful and there’s no rush or hurry to do much of anything up here on the moors. And if I’m honest, that’s why I love this time of year! There are wonderful views, glorious walks, empty beaches and miles of un-chartered heather moors right outside the front door and within a few miles in each direction. Inside, there are 15-tog quilts, an open fire, a well-stocked bar, a kettle that’s rarely off the boil and more books, films and cds than you could shake a stick at. I can think of few things better than a few days away doing nothing more taxing than planning the next walk, via which pub and tea room and working up a healthy appetite for dinner after a hearty breakfast. We look forward to seeing you soon!
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 pope 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?
What else can I tempt you with? The Steam Trains aren’t running now until February half-term, but the Coastliner bus still means you don't need the car to head to Pickering, Whitby or Malton. The Birch Hall at Beck Hole is a great spot for some 'refreshments', and Whitby is still bustling. The walks up and down the coast are doubly enjoyable when there's a chance you'll be the only people out and about and the beach connecting Sandsend to Whitby is always a joy when you've got the run of it!
And what’s happening right now? Well, our guests are split between enjoying every last moment of their day out, and coming back in for a sit-down and freshen up before dinner. Or deciding whether fish and chips on the pier in Whitby means dinner is out of the question and they should just have a glass of wine in the lounge! Oh, and our new arrivals are sampling some lemon drizzle cake and chocolate brownie, and being lulled into an early evening snooze by the open fire! And we’re about to… collapse in a heap after a brilliant but hectic New Year! 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 LAST 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…