Last Week’s Shoot – Ripon and Studley Park

I’ve visited Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal on many occasions but I had never walked there from Ripon so thought it was about time to explore some of the footpaths along the valley of the River Skell.

Mackershaw Lodges and Gateway at Studley Park near Ripon North Yorkshire England

I set out along the river but headed off on the path toward Whitcliffe Hall, eventually entering Studley Park via the gateway at the old ruined Mackershaw Lodges.  From here there was a nice mowed path leading across farmland past a pond which provided a nice watering hole for cattle on what was quite a warm day despite the overcast conditions.

Dam on the River Skell forming the Ornamental Lake at Studley Park near Ripon North Yorkshire England

The path descended past a pine plantation and emerged into the part of the park I already knew quite well at the lake (formed by the dam on the River Skell) near the top entrance to Fountains Abbey.

View along an Avenue to the Gate at Studley Roger with Ripon Cathedral Beyond at Studley Park Ripon North Yorkshire England

I spent some time around the lake and up to the church and obelisk before heading off back down the lane across the estate toward Studley Roger.  There’s a great view here down the tree-lined avenue to the gatehouse with Ripon Cathedral visible in the distance.

Entrance to Studlay Park at Studley Roger near Ripon North Yorkshire England

Outside the gatehouse at Studley Roger (above) the path continues across meadows back toward Ripon, eventually joining the road back into the city passing Spa Gardens which looked lovely, full of summer flowers.

South Transept Entrance to Ripon Cathedral with Romanesque Arch Ripon North Yorkshire England

By this time the sun had put in an appearance, so a late afternoon trip to the cathedral was in order to get some summery shots which I’d not done here before. I hadn’t noticed the mix of styles before either – mainly early English Gothic with pointed windows but also Norman style rounded windows in the south transept, with its attractive Romanesque arched entrance.  It certainly made it a shoot with a lot of variety!



About marksunderland

Mark Sunderland is a retired landscape and travel photographer still taking the occasional photograph! For image licensing and prints see

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