Summer Excursions 2019

511th Excursion

Saturday June 29th

Appleby Castle in Westmoreland

Time: 8.30 Coach pickup point in Leeds, Lower Briggate.
          9.00 Alwoodley Park and Ride, King Lane.

Place: Appleby Castle

Cost : To include coach and entrance fee £28
           Soup and roll                               £4.50

Appleby Castle is not open to the public. It is open by appointment only so this is a rare opportunity to look inside. It has been occupied continuously since it was built. The Norman Keep is visible for miles and was built about 1110. The extended walls were raised to keep out the Scots ater they had successfully captured it in 1174. The buildings in themselves are fascinating.

This was the favourite castle of Lady Anne Clifford. She was the sole surviving child of George Clifford, third Earl of Cumberland and Elizabethan courtier, adventurer, and plunderer of Spanish treasure ships. He left his estates to his brother and for much of her life she and her mother fought the will in the courts. She finally got her inheritance when she was sixty on the death of her cousin. She spent the rest of her life in the North restoring her estates, rebuilding her dilapidated castles and churches, funding almshouses and dispensing justice in her manorial courts. She travelled extensively between her Castles, Skipton, Barden Tower, Pendragon, Appleby, Brough and Brougham. She left a plaque on each building recording her repairs and showing all her titles. Her first husband was the Earl of Dorset and she became Mistress of Knole Park in Kent. She later married the Earl of Pembroke. The triptych portrait which used to hang on the stairs at Claremont shows Anne at fiteen years old, her parents and brothers who died in infancy and Anne at sixty when she finally came into her estates.

Her grandson Thomas, Sixth Earl of Thanet built the splendid Palladian Mansion in 1686. This remains a family home to this day. There is an excellent presentation of Lady Anne as Countess of Cumberland taken from her diaries and extensive record keeping. She was very much ahead of her time and a strong determined lady.

The great Hall is open for refreshments. You may bring your own, tea, coffee and scones are available. Our hosts will provide hot soup and rolls which can be pre-ordered.

After the tour those who wish will join a walk through Appleby passing the columns she erected to celebrate the Restoration of Charles II and looking at the Alms Houses she founded plus the Church where her splendid tomb is. We will rejoin the coach by the river.

The story of Anne Clifford is remarkable and a lecture is planned for Tuesday September 24th at 6.30 for both the Library and Thoresby Members by Professor Jessica Malay based on Lady Anne's own writing. more details here

Appleby Castle


512th Excursion

Sunday July 28th

A Wander around Meanwood Park

Time: 2pm
Meeting place : The car park at the Green Lane entrance to the park
Guide : Janet Douglas

If you don't know Meanwood Park, then you don't know what you are missing, and if you do, then this wander through the park and its environs will enhance your enjoyment of the park in the furture. The area has a rich and diverse history, and has a long association with two of the leading families of Leeds: the Oates and the Becketts. It also has a special association with the Thoresby Society as Meanwoodside was once the home of Edwin Kitson Clark, a stalwart of the Society since its foundation in 1889. He served the Thoresby Society holding a number of offices and was President from 1940-43.

The walk will take approximately two and a half hours. There is also some street parking off Green Lane and at the bottom of Hollin Lane. The 51 and 52 buses stop close to the park.

Please note that some of the booking forms that went out with the AGM papers have the wrong month for this trip. The correct date is on the booking form you can download below.




   Please download and complete the Booking Form for the excursions you wish to take.