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North York Moors Fun Run 2016


Duncan Grimmond

As far as I was concerned this year's Fun Run got off to an excellent start. After a bit of poking about on AirBnB I found a place in Helmsley, a converted railway carriage just behind Bondgate, the road towards Beadlam. Not quite knowing what to expect I "sold" the idea to Mike Bulley and Rob Jenkins and passed on the address.

Mike had arrived first and bagged the large bed but we let him off as the other two were tiny. Rob and I had driven up together as he'd left his trailer at Zinc Towers and we found Mike ensconced with the kettle on and the welcome mat out. Our Hostess had been most solicitous in the welcome department, home made shortbread cakes, fruit, tea, coffee, milk, a half decanter of Scotch and a bottle of Vodka! The conversion of the carriage was, with all mod-cons. a sight to behold and I could go on, but this is about the Fun Run.

Rob produced gin and tonic as a light sundowner. We were told that there was a brewery at the Bridge end of the High Street and had to walk quickly to get there in time for a pint of the finest beer I've come across for some time. The "pub" was more of a corner-shop front with decidedly un-matched furniture and a make-do bar, very "shabby chic" but none the worse for that.

Unfortunately, the taxi to the Desi Spice in Beadlam had been ordered for 7.00 pm and we were obliged to finish our pints slightly faster than we might have wished.

Dave & Nicki Parr, Tom, Sam, & Geoff were already there and we made a party of eight. Good food, good cheer and they had my favourite Indian lager, Lal Toofan. A good evening was had by all.

Next morning our breakfast at the wondrous railway carriage was something else. In the house kitchen we were treated to scrambled eggs, spinach, asparagus, mushrooms tomato with fresh toast and honey which made an excellent start to my day. (I think others may have partaken of some fried dead-pig's bum but I averted my eyes!)

"Mr. Hostess" was suitably impressed by the cars, not to mention the ease with which three trikes were squeezed into a tight double parking space.

At Beadlam we found several Pembletons had arrived and by 10.00 there were 11 in total, together with a Triking (Tony with brother David) and a 2CV (Mike & Mary who are in the process of building a LWB SS). Alan Walker had brought his grandson in a Series Land Rover, fully restored and complete with roof-tent.


We set off towards Helmsley and then out on the road towards Hawnby passing through the Caydale Mill Ford as shown in Phil's photo. A veritable flotilla of Pembletons, after which we stopped on top of Arden Moor for a break and re-group.

The weather could not have been better, bright sunshine giving clear views over God's Own County. Climbing out of Osmotherley however, there was a sudden change as we drove into heavy mist (low cloud?) and the temperature drop was astonishing. There was a very slow passage through some roadworks which gave me the chance to slip on a jacket and keep some heat in as I was wearing only a Tee-shirt and trousers.


We then joined the main Stokesley road for a few miles to reach Swainby and on up into the hills again to Lord Stones and down to Chop Gate. Here we stopped again, thwarted by re-surfacing work that prevented us from using a 500 yard stretch of road before heading to Ingleby Greenhow. The only recourse was to head south for Helmsley again and as this was a stretch of road inboard of a CLOSED sign, we had the opportunity to relieve the strain on holding up a heavy right foot!

We then pressed on through Hutton-le-Hole to our lunch stop at the Lion Inn at Blakey.

After lunch, Alan Walker and his family returned to Helperby while we headed for Fryup. For me, this afternoon stretch of the run is the most interesting, a combination of steep hills and moor-top single track roads, a couple of fords and best of all, the marvellous Limber Hill. Steep, tight bends to both hands and sudden changes in gradient all make it a treat to drive.

For future reference it is worth noting that a distance between you and the car ahead of a good 100 yards at the bottom really helps the ascent. It ensures that differently powered cars do not end up either forcing a lifted foot or an inconvenient gear change where there is little chance of an overtake!


More entertaining roads led us to Newton on Rawcliffe where Geoff hides his interesting collection of cars and bikes including an MG TC, E-type and BSA A65. We piled into the village and formed a display line on the high green outside his house to the amusement of some of the locals.


I think they must be used to strange collections of vehicles by now as they were fairly nonchalant about the spectacle of cars turning and climbing up the verges. Anna, Geoff's charming wife had made scones and cakes to go with very welcome mugs of tea to refresh us before we pressed on to Rosedale and the Chimney Bank where we made our farewells and departed homewards.

Many thanks to Sam (and his cycling) for planning and organising a great day of Pembleton fun, he knows the area very well and chose a fantastic route for our entertainment.

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