Hello and a very warm well come to a new year and my brand new blog!
Well, I've been 'live' for six months today! (I've actually been around for 240 years, but hey, who's counting!)
During the last six months I've welcomed more people than I had expected, it's been fabulous seeing new people arrive, enjoy my hospitality and leave all smiley and loved up!
I'll just fill you in on a bit of my history....
I was built circa 1777 and over the years, my neighbouring cottages and I have all been the local post office at one time with kin folk moving from cottage to cottage as their families developed and grew.
There was a public house called the New Inn at the end of the terrace, I'm not too sure when it was built, but it was demolished in 1965 and it is understood that some of the panelling from the pub was used to encase my stair way. The site where the New Inn stood, is now my parking area - which is solely for your use when you stay with me!
I have previously been let out as a holiday cottage and also lived in and loved as a family home which is what I was before my current owners, Jaine and Dave bought me. They bought for their own use, as a little haven to visit to shake off the hustle and bustle of daily life. They spent over two years lovingly refurbishing me - which I understand was a real 'labour of love' (sounds cute eh?) Once they finished the refurbishment, they decided to share me with other people.
Ingleton Waterfall Trail
Many of my guests visit the area to treat themselves to the spectacular views of the Ingleton Waterfalls Walk - many of them reliving their primary school day trips to the area. Some of my guests ask why they have to pay to enjoy the waterfalls....here is an explanation....
More than a century ago no fewer than seven special steam train excursions arrived at a small Dales railway station in one day and disgorged thousands of men, women and children. Three of the trains had originated in Leeds and two in Bradford, while the others had brought passengers from the mill towns of Lancashire. As they swarmed out onto the platform the visitors were greeted by a man ringing a handbell and shouting directions.
Many local people – keen to earn every penny they could – sacrificed their own meals in order to feed this huge influx. According to one account: "There was partial famine in the village." The swarms of visitors had been drawn by, if not one of the Seven Wonders of the World then surely one of England's finest spectacles. They had come to see the Ingleton Waterfalls. The falls had become a huge attraction, not least because local villagers keen to promote the goldmine on their doorstep borrowed the famous Italian saying "vedi Napoli e poi muori", which told well-heeled Victorian tourists they might be so overwhelmed by the beauty of Naples it could prove fatal. Audaciously, the Ingletonians advertised their own visual wonder with the slogan: "See Ingleton and then die!"
The steam trains and charabancs from the industrial towns continued for decades. Today, people come in cars and coaches, but somehow the waterfalls still seem part of a bygone age. Almost every inch of uncultivated land in the Yorkshire Dales is now freely open to walkers as a result of the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000, but to enjoy the four or so miles of footpaths around Ingleton's waterfalls you must pay an admission charge – Family ticket (2 adults and up to 3 children) £15, £6 for adults and £3 for children. Yet more than 50,000 visitors do so every year without complaint, making it one of the top tourist honeypots in the Dales, and the falls show no sign of fading in popularity. In the last few years a new toilet, cafe and shop complex has opened to cater for visitors.
Few of them know who owns Ingleton Waterfalls. Some believe they are a National Trust property, others that they're run by the Yorkshire Dales National Park. But, in fact, the falls are an unusual family-owned business with a colourful history. It began in the 1880s with Joseph Carr, a local newspaper correspondent for the Leeds Mercury – one-time fierce rival to the Yorkshire Post – publicly musing that the then-largely inaccessible waterfalls might be enjoyed by visitors if only there were paths, bridges and viewing stages. When his idea got positive feedback a public meeting was called and an "Improvement Company" set up with people like the local vicar as well as builders and hoteliers. Within weeks the work had been completed and visitors were charged 2d (less than 1p in today's money). In the spring of 1885, on just one day the total takings showed that there had been 3,840 visitors. But the men who'd set up the company soon fell out. Locals had thought the profits would be spent on improving Ingleton and suspected private gain was the motive, while landowners and tenants began to insist on a cut of what had turned out to be a surprisingly successful business. Large sums went on legal fees as the arguments continued in court for over three years, and it left two companies running waterfalls walks for a few years – one on the River Twiss side, and the other on the River Doe.
Understandably, the crowds who arrived at Ingleton were annoyed at having to pay twice if they wanted to see all the waterfalls. Posters began to appear in the streets of Bradford declaring: "Don't go to Ingleton unless you want to be robbed!" But go they did. More than 6,000 visitors clicked through the station's turnstiles on one day, and within a couple of years the two competing companies had amalgamated, with two of the original Improvement Company directors, George Walling and Samuel Worthington, emerging as the sole shareholders. Walling was headmaster of the village school, while Worthington – a Liverpudlian who discovered Ingleton while a travelling salesman for a wine and spirit merchant – was landlord of the local Wheatsheaf Hotel. It would be Worthington who eventually owned the lot. He had used much of his own money to build the paths and bridges, and when Walling decided to sell his half of the business in the 1920s it was bought for just 5 by William Worthington, the eldest of Samuel's six sons. William ran it most of his life, buying up Beezley Farm at the top of the River Doe section and obtaining rights to walk over other farmland not controlled by the company.
He insisted on keeping the admission charge low, saying "It was sixpence in my father's time and it will be sixpence when I'm gone." When he died in 1966, he had no children to inherit his lion's share of the company and his interest was split between family members. Today, the Worthington family still owns the waterfall walk and runs it as a highly successful business under the name of The Ingleton Scenery Company. Although some members of the family still live locally, none of the directors reside in Yorkshire. One of them is Robin Worthington, great-grandson of Samuel, who lives in Croydon. His myriad cousins, second-cousins and beyond – many of them shareholders – insist on being kept informed about everything connected with the waterfalls. He says: "It's a rather unique inheritance that we all have." Some visitors object to paying at the gate, Robin adds, but the vast majority appreciate what's being provided and comment on what a wonderful walk it is, returning year after year. The business is managed by a firm of Skipton property consultants, David Hill, whose Rachael Harper is closely involved with the waterfalls. "The family are committed to improving the walk by continually ugrading the path facilities to ensure it remains a major attraction," she says, adding that without the admission money to spend on maintaining the infrastructure there wouldn't be any access to the waterfalls.
Visually, the tourist attraction hasn't changed in the 120 years since being opened up, but it has acquired a new name. Once it was known as the Ingleton Waterfalls Walk, but now 'Walk' has been replaced by the rather American-sounding 'Trail.' Ingleton waterfalls The route is 4.5 miles long and follows the River Twiss on the outward stretch before crossing over to the River Doe for the return leg. Allow 2.5 to 4 hours to complete the route, depending on level of walking ability.
Swilla Glen: a deep chasm cut into carboniferous limestone with woodland of oak, ash, birch and hazel.
First Pecca Falls: five waterfalls dropping 100 feet over sandstone steps into plunge pools which may be as deep as the falls themselves.
Pecca Twin Falls: Three spectacular cascades.
Hollybush Spout: A gushing water leap over naked rock.
Thornton Force: The most photographed waterfall of all and a staple of Yorkshire calendars. The river rushes over a huge limestone plinth and drops 50 feet into a large rock pool.
Beezley Falls: Located at the top of the River Doe, there are three waterfalls side by side.
Rival Falls: The footpath rises 60 feet above a pool known locally as "the Black Hole." Its depth is reputed to be 80 feet.
Baxenghyll Gorge: A deep water-foaming crevice, with a viewing bridge high above. Snow Falls: Just beyond Baxenghyll, another watery cascade, best seen when the river is in spate.
Cat Leap Fall: The climax of the walk, a high and thin waterfall not actually part of the River Doe but belonging to a tributary, Skirwith Beck.
Ingleton Waterfalls Trail is open daily from 9am until dusk (closed Christmas Day). Dogs allowed but must be kept on leads on some sections of the trail and when crossing farmland. www.ingletonwaterfallstrail.co.uk or from the ticket office (015242 41930).
"So, what is going on in Ingleton in 2018?" I hear you ask?
Well, click on the link below to the 'This is Ingleton' website and find out on their jolly useful 'What's on' page.