Country Pubs: Chapel-le-Dale & Ribblehead
By Lawrence Bland
Going north of Ingleton on the B 6255 road, partly on an old Roman road in the Yorkshire Dales, poorly served by buses, but Northern Dalesman 830 bus operate summer Sunday services to Wensleydale and Richmond. Ribblehead is on the main Settle to Carlisle train line. Chapel-le-Dale has the Old Hill Inn, which dates back to 1615, originally a farm, then became the Drovers Inn, handy for climbing Ingleborough and Whernside. St.Leonard’s Church has graves of navvies, who helped construct Ribblehead Viaduct and Blea Moor tunnel.
The Station at Ribblehead, opened in 1874, a welcome refuge in a bleak spot in the middle of superb walking country across Batty Moss. Visit the gents ‘loo with a view’. A shanty town existed on the nearby moor from 1870 to 1875, which must have had ‘ale houses‘.
Further north, we come to the former Gearstones Inn, now a lodge, which served a little settlement on an old droving route, from the north down to Ribblesdale, as well as hosting a busy weekly market as well as regular cattle and sheep fairs, the pub closed in 1911.