Kirknewton-Yeavering Bell Walk

Yeavering Bell

(circular) from Kirknewton

Location OS Landranger Sheet 75- Explorer OL 16

Start point NT 914302 5 Miles 3.0 hours

How to get there From Wooler take A697 north and at Akeld go left on the B6351 to Kirknewton. Park in the Village Centre car park next to the church or on the side of the wide road beyond the school and church.

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Great views from the iron age fort on top of the "Bell". Some steep slopes both up and down.

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Start :-The Village Hall - Church Gate
Northumberland and its many castles are the subject of most of the pages on this website. This walk to Yeavering Bell brings the walker to one of the most important sites in Northumberland's history. the site Ad Gefrin named by the Venerable Bede lies on the other side of the road from Old Yeavering.

Gefrin was the site of the Saxon palace of King Edwin, King of ancient Northumbria from 616 to his death in 633 and for whom Edinburgh is named.

Take the tarmac lane with the Village Hall on your left and church on your right. Take a left then right with the butressed wall of Kirknewton House on your right, the lane will peter out into a grassy track leading on past a delapidated old Building "The Old Forge"

This track will take you round West Hill, which has an Iron Age Fort of its own.

Go through the metal gate and follow the double track. There are "Hillfort" waymarkers every so often.

You will pass the cottage of Langback last occupied in the 1950s and long since a ruin.

Through another metal gate the track curves round bringing Wester Tor into view.

Wester Tor and Easter Tor stand to the west of Yeavering Bell.

You will come to a small Permissive Path sign. follow its advised direction down to the right. Cross a small stream and over a wall stile.

Go left following the direction of the wall and make your way to a gateway up ahead with another stile to its left.

Over the stile the track is a little indistinct but make for a dark stand of trees some way to the right of the buildings you can see ahead. or if visible the summit of Easter Tor

These buildings are shown on the map as Torleehouse.

Go through the gate and the track ahead is part of the "St Cuthbert's Way" Take this track left.

The walk deviates around the Torteehouse buildings and then continues on the main track.

Just before a cattle grid and gate go right and follow the St. Cuithbert's Way signs (A Celtic Cross) and begin to climb up a grassy track through a wooden gate. it is quite a steep climb.

You will come to a ladder stile. The path continues over the other side climbing uphill with the wall now at your right and at a more gentle incline.

The views from here are excellent. Looking back to the valley of the river Glen and Yeavering Bell tantalisingly close on the left.

You will come to another "shin high" way marker. this offers four directions. Take the grassy path down to the left, leaving the St. Cuthbert's Way.

The path is now waymarked down over a stream and up the southern slopes of Yeavering Bell passing some old sheepfolds/cottages?

Climb up through the scattered walls of the iron age fort and find the Bell's highest summit to the east.

If possible take the time to do the circuit of the fort walls. Given the importance of the site there are a number of publications giving much more insight that can be given here. I can but recommend {Yeavering(People-Power&Place) Paul Frodsham & Colm O'Brien}

In the picture immediately above left, I have marked the area of Ad Gefrin the Palace site with a lightened elipse.

The walk leaves the hill fort on the north side. dropping down to the left through the rock strewn north face. There are way markers at intervals. Be careful! this route will be slippy when wet follow down to the right once you have reached the grassy path. You are heading for the buildings below.

The first large building you come to is thought to be the remains of a Bastle house or defensive farmhouse and it is known locally as "The Old Palace".

Cross the ladder stile to the left of the ruined building and take the track right, down past Old Yeavering and turn left onto the country road B6351 and make your way back about half a mileto Kirknewton.

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You may wish to feel the vibrations of standing where Edwin stood in Ad Gefrin and there is an entrance to the field and a monumental sign a few hundred yards along the road to the right of the junction. . Further on down this road in the same direction as the monument but on the Yeavering Bell side of the road stands the Battle stone at a field edge. Named for a battle between English and Scottish forces in 1415. The stone was here long before then. The "Menhir" is thought to be bronze age in origin. In Britain that is from c. 2,500 until c. 800 BC

For consideration, when using the countryside

This selection of walks in Northumberland follow recognised public rights of way or permissive paths and should be easy for most people to negotiate: but please remember that wet and winter weather can make paths muddy in places and the summer months produce fresh growth of vegetation - so wear suitable clothing and footwear.

If on any of these walks you find obstructions, or damage to stiles or footbridges which make paths impassible, please report these details as soon as possible to the countryside department of the Local or National Park authority responsible for the area.

Relationships between local farmers and those who use the footpaths are generally very good and there is no reason why they should not remain so given reasonable attitudes and understanding. Remember that the countryside is the farmers' livelihood, so please observe the Country Code : keep to the paths; close gates after you ; and take care not to cause damage, or leave litter; keep your dog under control; and leave all wild flowers for others to enjoy.

Taken from: Country Walks in East Tynedale by Philip R. B. Brooks (1978) NBM Sept 2009

Dogs in the countryside :-

On Rights of Way - Dogs must be kept under close control, preferably on a short lead.

On Access Land - 1) Keep your dog on a short lead from 1 March to 31 July this to protect ground nesting birds from disturbance

2) Local restrictions may include a ban on dogs.

3) Note that restrictions do not apply to Guide/Hearing dogs, or if you are using a public right of way

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