- PENNY ELLIS -
From Eden Vale to the Plain of York,
From Eden Vale to the Plain of York, Edmund Bogg,1894
(courtesy of the Dales Countryside Museum, Hawes)
The following is a transcription from the above Book:
p. 233-235 Transcribed From Eden Vale to the Plain of York, Edmund Bogg, 1894
"The village of Thoralby* (Thorald's town) stands on the east end of the northern slope of Bishopdale.
* THORALDEBY. - There are at this place nine carucates of land, thirteen of which would make the fief of one soldier; of these nine Robert Oysel holds half a one from Robert de Tatersale, and the same Robert de Tatersale holds eight carucates and a half from the Earl of Richmond, and the Earl from the King.
In 1360 a chantry chapel was built here by Maria de Neville, Lady of Middleham, and although suppressed at the dissolution of the monasteries, the site is still known as Chapel Close [Chapel Garth]. Littleburn House, now a farmstead, was for some time the residence of Matthew, fourth Lord Rokeby. On the bridge near the mansion is to be seen a Latin inscription from this lord's pen.
IN GOD THE ONLY SECURITY.
This Egerian bridge, at the expense of the neighbourhood thrown over this river, awkwardly narrow and at times most dangerous, in memory of peace and security, is under God, dedicated to Wellington.
O chieftain, courageous arbiter of war, who bringest peace, as patron of this bridge, receive the floods of this bounding water. May the Great Ocean take these floods of the fountain and may this arch to thy triumph shine!
At Edgley, for some time dwelt the well known Mrs. Montague, at whose house in London the famous "Blue Stocking Club" was held. This name was received by the reason of one of the members always wearing stockings of the above colour. The inhabitants of Thoralby received much benefit by those distinguished visitors dwelling in their neighbourhood. Near to the village is Heaning Gill, locally know as the silver chain, a succession of waterfalls and cascades bursting from the wooded heights, and silvering through scenes of remarkable beauty to the vale below. During the Martinmas week Thoralby is roused from her slumbers; then all the young men and maidens are at home for a week’s holiday, and there is the usual dressing up of guys and mumming, etc., and the perambulating of the village to the din of concertina and fiddle, and the begging from house to house for anything to swell the big feast [Thoralby Feast], which takes place either at the inn or some large room, ending with a jumping dance, which concludes the festivities. Thoralby is at present renowned for hand-sewn boots, we counted some half dozen men busily stitching and hammering in one window, whilst the great number of ready-made boots and shoes in another room would have put to shame many stocks in large towns. [The house whitewashed in the photograph below was re-named 'Northampton House', and made and sold boots, shoes and clogs].
Most of the houses are from two hundred to three hundred years old. In one such we sat over our tea, and gazed through the old mullions, ablaze with bright colours, and redolent with the perfume of plants. In front is the little green, on which stands the village pump. Beyond, over roofs and gardens, we look on to the opposite hills, the declining sun pencilling the scene with rays of splendour."
Littleburn Bridge and House through the trees, 1st March, 1987, courtesy of Ann Holubecki.
Latin inscription on Littleburn Bridge - original stone plaque, now on the wall in Thoralby Village Hall.
Thoralby Village Green, courtesy of Edmund Bogg, 1894.