West from Richmond to Applegarth via Whitecliffe Wood, then back along the valley following the course of the River Swale. South-east to Easby Abbey, followed by a look around Richmond town centre and a visit to the castle. A 9-mile walk in Northern England.
The best map to use on this walk is the Ordnance Survey map of Darlington & Richmond, reference OS Explorer 304, scale 1:25,000. It clearly displays footpaths, rights of way, open access land and vegetation on the ground, making it ideal for walking, running and hiking. The map can be purchased from Amazon in either a standard, paper version or a weatherproof, laminated version, as shown below.
The view south-east towards Richmond from Westfields, near Whitcliffe Farm. A plaque nearby recites a paragraph from the book ‘A Coast to Coast Walk’ by Alfred Wainwright (1907-1991):
There is a thrilling view of Richmond ahead. Richmond is a town unlike others, a place unique, rich in relics of the past, steeped in a long history that still lingers in the ramifications of its castle and the narrow alleys and quaint buildings that huddle in the shelter of the massive Norman keep. The castle, dramatically poised on a cliff high above the Swale, is a dominating feature. It is a town of reminders of times long past. It is too good to be by-passed.
To be honest, the view isn’t all that good in my opinion.
The view south from High Leases to the village of Hudswell on the other side of the River Swale.
Swaleview Caravan Park nestled between Hag Wood and the River Swale.
Time for a quick photo on the bridleway near East Applegarth.
The meandering River Swale in the valley below.
The River Swale.
The River Swale as seen from the footbridge near Hudswell Woods.
The view east from the banks of the River Swale, with the keep of Richmond Castle visible above the trees.
The River Swale and Richmond Castle.
The River Swale waterfalls in Richmond town centre.
Mercury Bridge, Richmond.
Easby Abbey, founded in 1151-1152 by Roald, constable of Richmond Castle.
A reconstruction of Easby Abbey at the time of its suppression circa 1537. Painting by Terry Ball.
The refectory at Easby Abbey.
A reconstruction of the refectory at Easby Abbey. Painting by Jill Atherton.
The cloister at Easby Abbey.
Remains of the abbey church at Easby.
A reconstruction of the abbey church at Easby in the later Middle Ages. Painting by Jill Atherton.
Additional buildings to the north of the abbey church would have included the abbey infirmary, the infirmary kitchen, and other chambers and latrines.
St Agatha’s Church, Easby.
The gatehouse at Easby Abbey.
Farmland around Easby Abbey.
Painting on the side of a building in Richmond town centre. Some of the town’s attractions are named on the signpost.
Amazing 360° views from the top of the Richmond Castle keep.
The view of the River Swale from the castle wall path.
Path around the outside of the Richmond Castle curtain wall.