Village Web Site Forum

Denis Pickles
Monday, March 13, 2006 15:40
Footpath to the 'Big Rock' in Ravenstones wood.
50 - 60 years ago it was possible to follow a footpath through the quarry and on to the Big Rock. Access has been closed [or it had been the last time I visited] Under the 'right to roam', would it be possible to get to that spot again?
robert jones
Thursday, May 18, 2006 07:36
Saw your report on the Big Rock in Ravenstones wood, I left Sutton in 1996, and like to keep in touch with whats going on over there. I hope you remember me, as I had some sad news from Canada, your friend Christine Wilcock, passed away on the 1st of April, seeing your name on the newsletter, I thought I would drop an email to you, I hope you receive this. Cheers Bobby Jones the email belongs to my exwife.
Bobby Jones
Tuesday, May 23, 2006 05:45
hi, this is bobby Jones again, more information for you, i used to live in Park Ave, and before I left the UK I worked in the Betting Shop in Crosshills, it would be nice to hear from old pals if possible, emails can be sent to my exwifes email address, they will be passed on to me, it would be nice to keep in touch, cheers bobby/
Denis Pickles
Friday, July 7, 2006 17:07
Hi Bob. How do I send a message via your ex wife if I don't know her name or her e-mail address?
Denis Pickles
Tuesday, May 1, 2007 15:58
My attention has been drawn to the new photos of the village posted on the Sutton web site. I remember seeing most of them years ago in the post office down Sutton. In the past, a favoured viewpoint for photographers was the Big Rock in Ravenstones wood, now inaccessible due to the footpath being closed off. I posted a query about the situation over a year ago - I wanted to know whether the closure was done legally, but the only reply I got was from Bobby Jones in Australia and he knew nowt! Surely there's someone who knows why the footpath was closed. Was it done legally? Is Doris Riley able to shed light on this mystery? Maybe the Parish Council knows summat!
John & Sam
Tuesday, May 1, 2007 17:11
Denis, not 100% sure but I think you will find that there never was a 'legal' footpath to the big rock. You will also find that there are no legal rights of way to any of the Ravenstones woods from Sutton even though people had been following paths for years. Sometimes it is down to the discression of the landowner and unfortunately, for whatever reason this gesture is often removed.
Andrew Monkhouse
Hanoi, Vietnam
Wednesday, December 2, 2009 04:54
Hi Denis, I’ve dug up this old forum post from the deep vault. It was lurking somewhere at the bottom of the list.

I recently acquired an old postcard of a man standing under the Big Rock, Sutton Clough. I’ll send an image to the webmaster so hopefully you can see the picture. It’s probably 30 years since I walked up to the top waterfall in the Clough and I can’t remember seeing this Big Rock.

I do however remember standing on top of the Ravenstones Big Rock. It would seem that Sutton has 2 Big Rocks!
Paul Wilkinson
Wednesday, December 2, 2009 08:51
Hi Andrew, thanks for the photo of the second "big rock", I'll add it to the gallery.

An ancient footpath through Ravenstones was on the agenda of the last Parish Council meeting, North Yorkshire CC Rights of Way Department is currently investigating re-opening the footpath and including it on the "definitive map". On the Bradford/West Yorkshire side of the border the footpath is identified as "Steeton 13".

It's described as an ancient route which Bradford Council says "provides a vital link with North Yorkshire".

Here are a couple of links to old newspaper articles about it...

1998 Keighley News article

2000 Craven Herald Article

I'm not sure how close this path goes to the Big Rock.

Alan Pickles
Wednesday, December 2, 2009 18:06
The only "Big Rock" that I can remember is the one in the Ravenstones wood. The rock in this picture is definitely in the Clough. The farmhouse in the background is still there and has recently been refurbished. Can't remember it's name but I have no doubt that Denis will do so. I seem to remember that our Great grandparents lived there. Thanks for finding this picture, Andrew.
Alan Pickles
Wednesday, December 2, 2009 18:25
Further to the previous e mail, Looking at "Postcards of Sutton" in the Gallery in the pre1960 section, there is a postcard with the view of Sutton taken from the Ravenstones "BIG ROCK".
Denis Marshall Pickles
Wednesday, December 2, 2009 21:49
Aye!.. That's the Big Rock up at the top end of the Clough. I always referred to it as the Big Rock but its correct name is the Gaiter Stone. 70 odd years ago 'our gang' from Hazel Grove used to venture up there and into a 'cave' which was the remains of a drift coal mine. I'm pretty sure that that part of the Clough was private and we shouldn't have been there, but the old mine, the Big Rock and the waterfall had irresistable attractions for we 'explorers'.

I'm pleased to read that someone/body is trying to re-open the footpath to the Ravenstones Big Rock. It was THE place to go for a walk from the village. The view that confronted you when you emerged from the woods onto the rock was breathtaking. I'd like to do it again before it's too late. {But I think I'd as far as The Strikes}

Ronald Walton
Sutton in Craven
Sunday, December 6, 2009 13:20
The farmhouse in the background on the photo of the big rock is Woodvale
Andrew Monkhouse
Hanoi, Vietnam
Sunday, April 18, 2010 02:42
Interesting photographic comparison by Paul Pratt of ‘Big Rock’ or Gaiter Stone up Sutton Clough 100 years on, well done. Looks to be taken from the same spot, but yet Woodvale farmhouse is not visible.

Similarly, I tried to replicate a 1906 image of St Thomas church in 2007. But found it frustratingly difficult to capture the exact image to the same original scale, despite using a digital camera and furiously clicking away from different angles. My best effort can be seen in the gallery under the pre-1960 category “More old postcards of Sutton”

Next time I come to Sutton (whenever that may be) I will attempt to replicate more 100 year old images in the gallery for modern day comparisons (probably need photography lessons before I arrive) or perhaps other people living near by may like to give it a go.

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