Malham Village

7 September 2003

Leader - Robert Dyson

We started off the trip with a whistle stop history of Malham going back 300 Million years (give or take 50 Million years) to the Carboniferous period, when the fundamental landscape was laid down. We then moved forward to more recent times, and in particular the influence of the Monasteries on the Village.

We then walked on the old Back Lane separating the Medieval Tofts from the Crofts, noting the layout of the fields and noting the effect of the Middle Craven Fault on the soils - the acid soils (boggy and dark ) contrasting sharply with the sweeter luscious light green of the Limestone grasses. We then walked up to the end of the Crofts, to the point where the Village Ploughlands had been, prior to being enclosed later on.

We walked up towards the Cove, with most of the land on the Village side of the Cove having been generously "donated" to the Village, as compensation of loss of rights in the old Common Land. We visited the site of the now long forgotten Corn Mill and ended the trip by visiting the Village Green, the School and the rest of the east side of Malham Beck, which had all come under the influence of Bolton Priory. One of our members had had a connection with the "New School" which overlooks Malham. This School services both Malham and Kirkby Malham, When it was built, within living memory, there was an argument as to where the School should be sited - honour was satisfied by placing the School exactly half way between the Old Methodist Chapel in Malham and the Established Church in Kirkby Malham - the Scales of Justice were obviously working overtime.