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Farm life news

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When you travel, do you look for something very different to home or something very similar?

At the end of the school holidays we found ourselves back in a favourite place we first went to several years ago. Returning this year, we felt so at home in the gloriously green, rolling landscapes on a working farm in the English Countryside and could relax straightaway, being away from our everyday commitments.

Dairy farm

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Yorkshire's waterfalls in all seasons

We love discovering the waterfalls of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. There is just something about being in nature and watching water cascading over waterfalls that transports your mind to another place and brings joy. Or is that just me?

Here are three North Yorkshire locations where our family has enjoyed discovering the beauty of waterfalls over the past year. So very often the setting of these waterfalls is accompanied by woodland, which I find brings a real sense of adventure, beauty and even story-telling amongst our little people as their imagination is ignited...are fairies real or not?

I hope we shall continue our discoveries of waterfalls in the Yorkshire Dales - there are certainly many more gems to discover.

And if it's every been raining aplenty, we are in the north of England after all, well - the WONDERFUL news is that waterfalls often look their best after a good downpour. Just remember sturdy footwear, full waterproofs and to check the weather forecast before you set out.

Ingleton Waterfalls

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There's a buzz about Bank Newton

I wrote a poem today that I'd love to share with you.


There's a buzz about Bank Newton

I can feel it in the air

Celebrities descending

Our fields they wanted to share


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All in a day's filming

There's something compelling about seeing the area you live and work in on screen. You see it every day and yet when you hear 'it's going to be on TV', an excitement bubbles within.

But why is this? Does it look better on screen than in real life?

Newton Grange Cottages

I don't think so. Real life is nearly always surpassed by even the greatest photograph or video clip. So perhaps it's that we're all secretly proud of our neighbourhoods and want others to see them too. Or perhaps we are so intimately connected to the landscape that we live in that a storyline resonates all the more.

Yet today I don't think 'TV' has quite the same total captivation that it did 25 years ago. Back then, there was no Catch-up TV, very little total reliance on the internet. Mobile telephones certainly didn't have screens and were used to ring people first and text them second - if you could work out the keys, that is. You watched a TV series when it happened or carefully recorded it on video tape. TV was a great source of family entertainment that you sat down together for.

The rise of home-grown video clips and social media means that any of us, at any time, may see ourselves 'on screen' - provided we have the know-how and an appetite to put our story out there. On that, I'm still learning...

But what excited me most of all when a film crew descended on our farm in Bank Newton last September was -

1. That someone was interested to learn about my father's story. That they wanted to chat with him and find out about the restoration of Newton Grange Farm alongside the Leeds Liverpool Canal - of sheep farming today and rural diversification in to our holiday cottages and farm tourism - and of continuity and change in the landscape.

Newton Grange Cottages

2. That for a few hours over two days, the otherwise familiar pattern of life on the farm and the holiday cottages here, was interrupted - and welcomingly so. It made you stop and think - and for such home-based, home-grown enterprises as our own - that there's not only a much bigger picture out there but many of those in major metropolitan cities live a very different life to us, and are genuinely intrigued/amazed by the differences to our own lives. Things that we take for granted and see as ordinary, to others had great interest. They had something to learn and so did we.

3. That faces I'd seen on screen over the years or related to vivid memories I held (like buying the first ever record I owned - Kylie Minogue 'I should be so lucky') were now here on the farm, standing in our car park and fields. Pete Waterman and Bill Oddie were filming on our farm with my Dad for a Channel 5 series based on the canal network. Wow!

Pete Waterman at Newton Grange

Whether or not the footage makes the final cut, it means something that they were here in the first place. And when I see that record (the one produced by Stock, Aitken and Waterman, that is ) I shall be reminded of the day the filmmakers came to Newton Grange Farm in September 2019.

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Don't miss out on the Dark Skies Festival this February

The Yorkshire Dales is hosting a wide variety of events as part of the Dark Skies Festival, which runs from 14th February until 1st March 2020.

We highly recommend taking a look at the programme which details events suitable for young and old alike.

Why not book a stay in our holiday cottages in Bank Newton, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park and plan to join in with some of the stargazing events taking place?

Cottages can be booked online or by calling us on 01756 748140.

Rachael and Catherine

Discover five canal bridges on a 4 mile circular walk to East Marton

Discovering what's on our doorstep is a joy. I took the chance this morning to go for a run and compile the descriptions below, so that you can follow it too.

Here is a 4+ mile route that you can enjoy on foot from our holiday cottages in Bank Newton - taking in a short section of the Pennine Way national trail and the towpath of the Leeds Liverpool Canal - and leading you to the village of East Marton.

Bank Newton to East Marton Route

Navigationally it is quite straightforward - helped by the canal towpath and the five bridges that you pass - all of which have their own number (Bridges 160-164). Highlights along the way include the 'Double Arched Bridge' at East Marton, which sits beneath the A59 main road. Doesn't the bridge look fabulous?

Double Arched Bridge

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Walking along the Leeds Liverpool Canal

Leeds Liverpool Canal

Taking a walk along the Leeds Liverpool Canal towpath in Bank Newton last week, I enjoyed pausing to take some photographs of the canal locks and their wonderful setting. It is always a joy to potter along the canal towpath, to watch canal boats travelling through the locks in Bank Newton and to marvel at the feat of engineering that the Leeds Liverpool Canal is.

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What's it like in Bank Newton?

Here in Bank Newton we are lucky enough to have an abundance of space, plenty of green fields to play out in and patios to sit on. From the doorstep of the holiday cottages you can enjoy peaceful, canalside walks to see historic canal bridges and swans gliding along the water. In springtime we love seeing the bright yellow daffodils and pretty spring flowers. We look forward to the arrival of newborn lambs as the sheep and lambs move outside of the lambing sheds in to the surrounding pastures. A popular bridleway runs through the farm where horses and riders enjoy hacking out on. We are a working farm, with tractors and sheep dogs. We have fresh air aplenty and room to breathe. You can enjoy a network of footpaths from the doorstep of the cottage, including the Pennine Way national trail. Bank Newton is wonderfully rural and a perfect antidote to busy lives.

Our delightful cottages are in different shapes and sizes and include one, two and three bedroom units. Some of the cottages have ground floor bedrooms and two are entirely on the ground floor.

Here are a selection of photographs taken in March this year that capture our setting, and the holiday cottages we have.

Newton Grange Holiday Cottages

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