Yorkshire Part 1: Malton and Westow

Malton High Street

After flying for nearly 24 hours and landing at Heathrow at 5am (ouch) we picked up the rental car and headed north for Yorkshire, arriving in Malton, in North East Yorkshire, just in time for lunch.

The so-called foodie capital of Yorkshire, Malton is also the birthplace of one of my foodie heroes – James Martin – of course, we’d call in here!

street art Malton style

We stopped in at The Royal Oak for lunch. Although it seemed as though we hadn’t eaten real food for days, the portions here were Yorkshire sized and completely defeated us. The hospitality too was Yorkshire-sized – while we visited a lot of friendly pubs this was easily the friendliest.

Malton is a busy market town with a history dating back to the first century AD. The streets behind the high street are dominated by the stockyards and the auctioneers/broker/traders stores that go with that.

There are lots of other little factoids I could tell you about this place – like how the grand house/ castle was ordered to be demolished in 1674 and the stones divided between the two sisters who had inherited it and couldn’t agree on what was to happen with it. My favourite though is how some of the buildings in town inspired Charles Dickens when he was writing “A Christmas Carol.”

While in town we stocked up on some provisions for the next few days – including some scotch eggs and pork pies that I told you about in this post.

File miles south of Malton is Westow and our home for the next three nights.

Located in the gorgeous Howardian Hills, there are no shops here in the village, but plenty to see on a cold morning walk.

As luck would have it our cottage was just a couple of houses away from the local (small but very good) pub, the 300-year-old Blacksmith’s Arms, and given both the temperature outside (“by gum it’s raw”) and our energy levels (I was sinking fast) that was a very good thing.

There are 15 grade II English heritage-listed properties in the village, one of which is the cottage we were staying in – Yew Tree Cottage. As an aside, the white rose that you see on the gate (in the pic below) is the white rose of the Yorks – remember your history lessons about the War of the Roses? Anyways, it’s something you see everywhere.

The cottage is cozy warm and super comfortable. There are plenty of logs for the fire, some goodies on the kitchen bench and even a few cookbooks to keep me amused.

The cottage has 3 good sized bedrooms and sleeps 6 people. If you want to know more (and see some better photos of it), you can do so here.

Just a mile or so down the road are the ruins of Kirkham Priory on the River Derwent.

The priory was founded in the 1100s and was surrendered 400-odd years later as part of the dissolution of the monasteries.

It’s story, however, doesn’t end there as it was used in WW2 to test the D-day landing vehicles. Winston Churchill himself visited on that occasion.

It is, however, absolutely worth a stop…and the pub here is pretty good too!

Also in the area is Castle Howard. We visited here the first time we were in York but called in this time to check out the farm shop only…

across the hedgerows

Next time…a postcard from York.

Author: Jo

Author, baker, sunrise chaser

25 thoughts

  1. Jo – Gorgeous photos and I love reading the history of these places. The food portions at the Royal Oak look humongous. Thanks for sharing this. #lovin’lifelinky

    1. Oh my heavens it was ridiculous. The hilarious thing is the portion size smoothes out the further south you go – and the more expensive the pub!

    1. I adore Yorkshire. I’ll be posting on the coast in the next couple of weeks. We’re already planning another trip next year.

  2. My goodness you know how to make me yearn to go places! This area of England is somewhere I know I would love very much. The photo’s are gorgeous particularly that first one! The bridge photographed reminds me of the bridge in Richmond Tasmania built by convicts back in the early 1800’s. The cottage you stayed in looks gorgeous, and I’m embarassed to say that I have absolutely no recollection of any history lessons on the war of roses?! I was not a very dedicated student though. My interest in learning came much later than school days! lol #TeamLovinLife

    1. I know that bridge in Richmond…yes, it’s a similar one to that. As for the War of The Roses tsk tsk tsk.

  3. It all looks SO “English” Jo – the wet weather, wood fires, old houses and bridges, and all that English comfort food – nothing like a pie and chips!

    1. Quintessentially English. Yorkshire is just lovely – well, North Yorkshire is…there are some industrial bits that you drive around if possible!

  4. Love this area, and I was smiling throughout reading your post. Brought back wonderful memories as the area was close to where we housesat on a few occasions. Thanks for reminding me how lovely the area is even in the rain. Budget restraints luckily had us not buying so much of the “good stuff” 😉

    1. We never seem to have enough time in Yorkshire. We’re planning to go back in May next year but this time in the Spring with longer days so we can maybe do some of the hiking paths.

  5. After flying for 24 hours, you definitely deserve all of that great food and beautiful scenery. I especially like the opening shot. I had to look twice — I originally thought that it was a painting!

    1. Man, that’s a long flight. I don’t sleep on the plane – at all – so figure by the time I went to bed that night I’d been up for over 30 hours …and I will admit to playing with the exposure on the iphone for that opening shot.

  6. Wow! I want to experience everything you did first hand. And so badly, I can taste it!! Quaint cottage. The priory wall is an amazing tribute to architecture and history. The holly. The cobblestone. The hedgerows. Thank you for sharing your trip.

  7. REAL holly! Oh my, the place to be at Christmas with all the colour and festive additions. The outdoors here looked like an episode from So You Want To Move To The Country (title may be wrong!). Brilliant pics and I too don’t know how you did so much with so little sleep. Good job on the accommodations. Loved seeing your trip via SM. Denyse

  8. As usual, you’ve managed to capture the essence of a place just beautifully in photos, Jo. Thanks for sharing with us.

  9. Hi Joanne, Your Malton High Street photo is very effective. It looks like it could be in a magazine. Did you use a specific app? Fascinating on the history surrounding Malton. An exceptionally, beautiful and interesting post, Joanne! As your title suggests, this is only Part One. I look forward to reading Part Two.

    1. It’s pretty effective, hey? All I did was dialled up the exposure in the image, increased teh contrast and added a little more warmth – all in the iphone photo app, so nothing special…

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