The Dry Valleys of Medieval Cottam

  • Walk the geographically interesting dry valleys
  • Visit the medieval village at Cottam
  • Explore Cowlam Manor and its quaint church

This was one of those (obviously rare) occasions when I had not planned the walk and was totally unsure what was going to happen.  On arrival at Cottam I expected to see some genuine remains of a medieval village, I didn’t.. Archaeologists may be in their element but the rolling burial grounds did little for me, even if the derelict church is impressive as you approach it!

The best thing about the walk is the extraordinary, steep sided dry valleys that characterise the area. The paths are marked on the map but there is a feeling of walking in a maze, the steep uniform sides of the valleys offering an almost impregnable barrier between you and the outside world. It is very unusual and makes for some excellent walking. The lack of views in the deep valleys are made up for on the 2 mile return walk from Cottam with many miles of rolling countryside including parts of the Vale of York and Humber Wolds.

Recommend: Cowlam Manor is worth the detour with its old church and traditional brick outhouses

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OS Map: O/S 1.25,000. 300 Howardian Hills & Malton Buy Map
Start Point: 972633. There is some roadside parking on the Cowlam Road - a road that leads directly in to Driffield. Take the signposted footpath towards the Manor.
Height to Climb: 173 ms (567 feet)
Terrain: Excellent walking, stick to the valleys and there is little that can go wrong. The return from Cottam is arrow straight
Eating & Drinking: Stedmore and Driffield are nearest places to eat and drink, Sledmore is very pretty whilst Driffield has more choice.
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