Hardraw Force

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Hardraw Force
Hardraw Force Yorkshire.JPG
Hardraw Force
Location England Hardraw, Yorkshire Dales, England
Coordinates 54°19′16″N 2°12′8″W / 54.32111°N 2.20222°W / 54.32111; -2.20222Coordinates: 54°19′16″N 2°12′8″W / 54.32111°N 2.20222°W / 54.32111; -2.20222
Type Plunge
Total height 100 feet (30 m)

Hardraw Force (OS grid ref: SD869917) is a waterfall on the Hardraw Beck in Hardraw Scar, a wooded ravine just outside the hamlet of Hardraw, 0.93 miles (1.5 km) north of the town of Hawes, Wensleydale in the Yorkshire Dales.[1] The Pennine Way long distance footpath passes close by.

Comprising a single drop of 100 feet (30 m) from a rocky overhang, Hardraw Force is claimed to be England's highest unbroken waterfall[note 1][2] – at least discounting underground falls. (The underground waterfall inside nearby Gaping Gill on the western flank of Ingleborough has an unbroken fall of over 300 feet (91 m).)

Geologically, the bed of the river and plunge pool is shale; on top of that is sandstone and the top layer is carboniferous limestone.

Public viewing of Hardraw Force is rather unusual, as the visitor has to go through the bar of the Green Dragon Inn public house in Hardraw to reach the falls; an entrance fee is payable on the way through the pub. It is currently £2.50 per adult, £1.50 per child.[3] Access behind the falls is now prohibited.

Hardraw Scar[edit]

Hardraw Scar (54°18′58″N 2°12′18″W / 54.316°N 2.205°W / 54.316; -2.205) is a limestone gorge located behind the Green Dragon inn at Hardraw near Hawes in the Yorkshire Dales. It is a natural amphitheatre and in September is the site of an annual brass band entertainment contest.[4] The contest attracts bands from all over the North of England and is a popular event amongst players and audiences alike.

The gorge is situated alongside the Pennine Way and also has an impressive waterfall, Hardraw Force, at the far end. Access to the gorge is via the nearby public house.

In 1899, a great flood came racing over the waterfall and into Hardraw itself, ruining buildings and uprooting coffins from the graveyard. The lip of the waterfall was demolished by the force of the water and the landowner at the time (Lord Wharncliffe) got his estate manager to repair the lip and it is now held together at the top by metal stakes.[5]

Hardraw Force and popular culture[edit]

Hardraw Force, 2004

Both J. M. W. Turner and William Wordsworth have visited the waterfall[6] and both men stayed at the Green Dragon Inn.[7]

The falls were used as a location in the film Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, in the scene where Maid Marian catches Robin Hood bathing under a waterfall.[8]

Hardraw Force is the setting for a brass band competition held annually on the second Sunday in September. The competition was first held in the falls' natural amphitheatre in 1884 when six bands took part; the competition lapsed in 1927 but was revived in 1976 and has gone from strength to strength since. In recent years two other musical events have started up at the falls: the Hawdraw Bash is a Folk Rock concert in early July and the Hardraw Gathering is a three-day festival of traditional music at the end of July.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ On 6 December 2015, Malham Cove regained its waterfall after a gap of what is possibly centuries. After Storm Desmond, water was seen falling off the 230 feet (70 m) cliff into the stream below, which made it, temporarily, the largest unbroken waterfall in England.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "98" (Map). Wensleydale & Upper Wharfedale (B1 ed.). 1:50,000. Landranger. Ordnance Survey. 2002. ISBN 0-319-22698-0. 
  2. ^ "Malham Cove: Storm Desmond brings 'highest' waterfall back to life". BBC News. 7 December 2015. Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  3. ^ "The waterfall". Hardraw Force. Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  4. ^ "Brass Band Entertainment Contest". 
  5. ^ Bagshaw, Mike; Mills, Caroline (2010). Slow North Yorkshire; moors dales and coast including york. Chalfont St Peter: Bradt. p. 82. ISBN 978-1-84162-323-8. 
  6. ^ "Hardraw" (PDF). Out of Oblivion. Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  7. ^ Robinson, Andrew (31 December 2014). "Dales pub boss exiting the dragon for life on a Greek isle". The Yorkshire Post. Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  8. ^ Smith, Anna (9 January 2015). "Unique Dales 'waterfall pub' on the market for £675k". The Westmorland Gazette. Retrieved 11 October 2016. 

External links[edit]