Aysgarth Falls

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Coordinates: 54°17′37.09″N 1°58′56.00″W / 54.2936361°N 1.9822222°W / 54.2936361; -1.9822222

The Upper Falls seen from the bridge
The Middle Falls from the North bank
The Lower Falls from the riverside

Aysgarth Falls are a triple flight of waterfalls,[1] surrounded by woodland and farmland, carved out by the River Ure over an almost one-mile stretch on its descent to mid-Wensleydale in the Yorkshire Dales of England, near the village of Aysgarth. The falls are quite spectacular after heavy rainfall as thousands of gallons of water cascade over the series of broad limestone steps, which are divided into three stages: Upper Force, Middle Force and Lower Force.[2]

Aysgarth Falls have attracted visitors for more than 200 years: Ruskin, Turner and Wordsworth[3] visited, all enthusing about the falls’ outstanding beauty. All three falls were featured in the film Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.[4]

The Falls are situated in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. There is a visitors' centre with an exhibition, information, items for sale, a café, toilets and a pay-and-display car park.

There are public footpaths through the wooded valley, offering views of the river and falls.[5] Wild flowers appear in the spring and summer, for example snowdrops in January and February, primroses in April and bluebells in May, and birds, squirrels and deer may also be seen. If you're really lucky you'll see salmon leaping up the Falls in autumn. Nearby is St Andrew's church, which has what is reputed to be the largest churchyard in England. The church has a medieval painted wooden screen rescued from the destroyed Jervaulx Abbey.[6]

A portion of the upper falls

The name originates from Old Norse and means the open space in the oak trees.[7]

It was featured on the television programme Seven Natural Wonders as one of the wonders of the North.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Wensleydale Yorkshire History". www.yorkshire-england.co.uk. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  2. ^ Fellows, Griffith (2003). The waterfalls of England : a guide to the best 200. Wilmslow: Sigma Leisure. p. 136. ISBN 1-85058-767-1.
  3. ^ "Aysgarth Falls". Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  4. ^ "Filming locations in Yorkshire". Yorkshire.com. Archived from the original on 25 October 2016. Retrieved 25 October 2016.
  5. ^ "Walks around Aysgarth Falls". Walks in Yorkshire. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
  6. ^ "St Andrew's, Aysgarth". A Church Near You. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  7. ^ "Aysgarth and Aysgarth Falls". Yorkshire Dales trail. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  8. ^ "BBC - Seven Wonders - Aysgarth Falls". www.bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 6 January 2016.