Esklets

Esklets, the source of the River Esk, at the confluence of three streams. Perhaps once the most remotest farmstead in the whole of the North York Moors. But the last farmer left in the 1960s and the farmhouse demolished. The rubble slowly becoming lost in the undergrowth. Just a few broken roof tiles and shards of pottery mark the spot. Except for a modern shooters’ track no road penetrates this far up the dale. The field system is surrounded by Open Access Land. An island in a sea of heather.

Esk means water; lets refer to the three tributaries. The name Esklets is first mentioned in a late 12th century charter as one of the parcels of land granted in Westerdale by Bernard de Balliol to Rievaulx Abbey. It is supposed because of the remoteness of the dale to the mother church at Rievaulx that an oratory was built there presumably at the site where the old farmhouse once stood.

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