Belsay Castle

Belsay Hall

Route: Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens

Area: Northumberland

Date of walk: 8th August 2019

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 3.5 miles

Ascent: 100 feet

Weather: Mostly sunny

Belsay Hall is owned and managed by English Heritage, and I must confess that I’d not heard of the place until today. After completing our walk at Allen Banks this morning, we were looking for ways to spend the afternoon and by chance noticed the name ‘Belsay Hall’ on our roadmap. Not knowing what to expect we drove from our base in Corbridge to Belsay and parked the car in the grounds

At the entrance to Belsay Hall the helpful and informative staff gave us an outline of the layout of the estate and a suggested walk visiting the main attractions. The estate comprises several interlinked elements: the Greek Revival mansion by the entrance, the formal gardens leading away from it, the unique quarry garden beyond it, and lastly the medieval castle. On the way back there’s an additional option of a walk through Crag Wood past the lake

We duly followed the recommended route, and the quarry garden in particular was a fascinating place. Huge walls towered above us as we walked through rock doorways and under arches planted with ferns and other plants gathered during expeditions by Sir Charles Monck, the original founder of the garden

We emerged from this area to the castle, where we climbed the spiral staircase of the main tower for a view over the surrounding countryside. At this far point of the walk we returned via a different waymarked route, made a short detour to Crag Wood and the lake, and then returned to the start

It was a fascinating visit, full of interest every step of the way, and I was glad to have belatedly discovered the place

Click here or on the Map Page icon for a map showing the location of Belsay Hall (I’ve not shown a route as there are various possibilities and it’s best to wander around this place as your fancy takes you)

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