The Gingerbread House is situated in a cul-de-sac running parallel with the Nidd, the river which gives its name to this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. But Nidderdale is not just pretty. From the time of the Norman Conquest and before, it has been home to the cottage industries of spinning , weaving and iron and lead smelting and although local production of these materials has long ceased, there is an archaeology waiting to be explored: the remains of a narrow gauge railway built to service the construction of two dams high up on the side of Great Whernside or the remains of mines which provided the lead for the guttering of Windsor Castle.
On the ground floor of the house are the lounge and dining area, with television, and a modern kitchen and downstairs toilet. The spacious bathroom and double bedroom are on the first floor and the twin bedded room is up a cottage staircase on the second floor. Parking is on street close to the house.
Pateley Bridge itself is small town with easy car and bus access to Harrogate and Ripon. Its shops ,cafes and car parks cater well for visitors and there is a gym and swimming pool on the site of Upper Nidderdale High School, 20 minutes walk from the town centre. A museum run by volunteers explains the history of Nidderdale and is next door to the Anglican church of St Cuthbert. Further afield are Fountains and Byland Abbeys, and Brimham Rocks, a morning’s adventure for climbers and boulderers of any age.
Price: £50-£60 (per night)
Several well known books shed light on the dale’s history:
Nidderdale: Grainge: 1863
Nidderdale and the Garden of the Nidd: Speight: 1894
Nidderdale: Speight: 1906
A History of Nidderdale: Edited by Jennings: 1983
The Nidd Valley Light Railway: Croft: Oakwood Press: 1987
Lesser Railways of the Yorkshire Dales: Bowtell: Plateway Press: 1991
OS (1:25000) Explorer Maps are:
298 Nidderdale- Fountains Abbey, Ripon and Pateley Bridge
OL30-Yorkshire Dales Northern and Central Areas
Well behaved dogs and children are welcome but as one would expect of a 19th century terrace, running-about space is limited.
The stairs are steep but negotiable by most people.