The Woodland Trust, Hackfall Trust and the Landmark Trust saw people from across the Dales visit Hackfall near Ripon over the weekend of September 11th and 12th and enjoy a series of free activities.
The "Hackfall Heritage Open Days" celebrated the restoration of the unique and inspirational site, thanking all those who have been involved in, or have supported the project, from funders to individuals in the local community.
The work culminated in the switch-on of the famous fountain, originally conceived by John Aislabie over 200 years ago, now restored to its former glories and reaching more than 30 feet high. The recent restoration work was funded by a grant of almost £1 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund and further grants from the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Yorventure and the North Yorkshire Aggregates Grant Scheme.
John Watson, Chair of the Yorkshire and the Humber Committee commented “We’re delighted that Hackfall is now ready to welcome a whole new generation of users and visitors with improved access for all. All those who have been involved and supported the project should be proud of their achievements. This project has opened up a previously hidden gem.”
Over the course of the weekend people had a unique opportunity to look around The Ruin, originally the banqueting house at Hackfall created by William Aislabie (now restored and owned by the Landmark Trust). There were also guided walks, storytelling, printmaking and a performance of "Summer Mummers" by the Penny Plains Theatre.
Paul Mosley from the Woodland Trust: "Hackfall is one of our flagship sites in the whole of the UK and we're very proud of all that's been achieved so far - and it was great to see so many people of all ages pay a visit over the course of the weekend."
Hackfall will host further events during the autumn and is free to visit 365 days a year, find out more at www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/hackfall