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Visiting Great Ayton, North Yorkshire

Great Ayton is the nearest village to Angrove Country Park at just 3 minutes drive or just 30 minute walk across the scenic fields. This lovely large village is home to many different pubs, cafes, restaurants and bars. A highstreet featuring a selection of independent shops, many local walks, vista spots and fascinating historic points of interest. It’s probably most famous for being the boyhood home of the explorer, Captain James Cook, with several tourist attractions relating to him in the village.

Tourist Attractions

The Obelisk – Erected on the site where Captain James Cook’s father had built a pair of cottages in the village in 1755. One of the cottages was demolished in 1928 with the remaining building advertised as “the home of Captain Cook” sold at auction, for £800 to the State of Victoria, Australia. Each stone and brick was marked up before dismantling for transport to Australia. The cottage was then meticulously rebuilt in Fitzroy Gardens Melbourne.

The site of the cottage in Great Ayton was made into a Memorial Garden and an Obelisk erected to mark the site. The obelisk, a gift from Australia, is made from granite hewn from rock at Point Hicks which was the first land sighted by Captain Cook when he approached Australia. An identical obelisk stands at Point Hicks Australia.

Visitgreatayton.com is a great site for further historical information.

Captain Cook Schoolroom Museum – A museum dedicated to the schooling of the young James.

Points of Interest

Waterfall Park – Waterfall Park can be found opposite Suggitts Ices (a Great Ayton institution since 1921 and serves vanilla ice-cream that people travel from miles around to enjoy) on the main High Street in Great Ayton. It is a beautiful hidden spot, perfect for enjoying a picnic or ice cream overlooking the small waterfall and the views across the fields. You can also find one of the stranger points of interest, a Victorian urinal.

The River Leven – On a summers day, the banks of the river are filled with families with fishing nets, picnics, ball games and bags of food for the ducks.

Great Ayton Discovery Centre - The tourist information is found within the discovery centre. It is also the village library which also has a range of arts and crafts equipment and a children’s activity area. It’s also very much a hub for community groups covering a range of activities such as drawing, knitting and Lego.

Little Ayton Station – The Esk Valley line takes you across the stunning scenescapes of the Yorkshire Moors. Take a trip straight across to the famous seaside town of Whitby or change at Grosmont to experience the North Yorkshire Moors Steam Railway.

Walking Routes

Route plans for local walks are available from Angrove Reception but below is a list of the top three voted for by the Angrove staff family.

Great Ayton Moor Walk Situated on Hutton Moor near Great Ayton lies a significant historical WWII site. During WWII Middlesbrough was bombed with the intention being to bring down the valuable iron and steelwork industries of the area. A new defence strategy was implemented, in which the Gisborough Moor ‘Starfish’ site was utilised. The intention of these sites was to trick the enemy into thinking they were bombing cities. The bunkers would be doused in fuel and set on fire, the smoke from which act as a decoy, fooling the enemy planes into bombing the moors instead of the towns and cities that were in full blackout.

Captain Cooks Monument Captain Cook’s Monument was erected in memory of the famous circumnavigator in1827 and is situated on Easby Moor, walkable distance from Great Ayton. The site provides panoramic views across the idyllic Cleveland Hills, Great Ayton, North Yorkshire Moors, and the infamous Roseberry Topping. There are many many options for walks encompassing the monument which range from short strolls up the hill from Gribdale Gate car park, or easily lengthen your trek, through Kildale, Guisborough, or Easby. The Cleveland Way walking route also passes by the monument.

Roseberry Topping The most famous landmark of the area is Roseberry Topping. It dates back to an estimated 206 million years ago, formed of sandstone and nicknamed the Yorkshire Matterhorn standing 1050m tall. Many Bronze-age artefacts have been found on the slopes and remains of Iron Age huts are still visible around the hill. There are 2 main routes up the hill, the direct shorter more challenging route to the summit and the longer, much easier route up.

If you’re looking for a cycle route near Angrove Country Park then you might like the ‘Ingleby Loop’ which takes riders on a 35km loop up and down some gradual inclines. Many more routes can be found online

Written by: Nicky Davey, Angrove Customer Service Supervisor
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