Having met by Skidby Mill (originally built in 1821, then extended to five stories in 1870, this windmill was powered by four sails, 11 metres in length, and in commercial use till 1966, but is now a museum) we set off west on a foot path passing Gallows Hill, (where sheep rustlers were said to have been hung during the reign of Charles II, - luckily we have supermarkets).
Then at a T junction headed in a northerly direction towards Skidby village, soon reaching the High Hunsley Circular footpath which we follow through the village, initially north east, then north as it zig zags towards the site of the Medieval Village of Risby,(home to the Ellerker family between the 14th and 18th centuries, the Hall was built in 1680 and destroyed by fire twice by 1780.
Henry VIII is rumoured to have visited in 1550), we stopped also for coffee.
Having encountered the expected muddy sections through field and track, it was a relief to be on solid tarmac, still heading in a northerly direction for the walk into Walkington (the site a few miles away of a Bronze Age barrow were decapitated remains of Anglo-Saxon criminals were found), for lunch and refreshments at the cosy and welcoming Fergusson Fawsit Arms. Rain and drizzle had threatened all morning, but thankfully even the sun came out on occasions.
The return journey took us south back on the High Hunsley Circular through Walkington Plantation, then briefly retracing our steps, until taking a left turn and heading east at the north edge of Risby Park, until reaching a road, were we turned right and headed south on the Beverly 20 footpath, back to Skidby. The afternoon meander offered wide views and lungfulls of East Yorkshire air with the distant silhouette of the mill beckoning us back to our cars. Peter led us at a perfect pace and Kerry back marked with his customery efficiency.
Doncaster Walking Festival 26th May to 3rd Jane – an outdoor extravaganza for all the family
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