At the end of day 2 we drove out of Tadcaster to stay with relatives Andy & Helen at their family home. The next morning after some excellent food and home comforts we all piled in the car to drive back to Tadcaster for the start of day 3. Andy had signed up weeks ago to run this leg with me, so we were both eager to get started.
Setting off from the River Wharfe bridge we ran out of Tadcaster post the iconic John Smith’s brewery with it’s prominent chimney but at this point the weather had turned grey and cold so we really didn’t hang around for long to take many photos.
It took me a while to warm up and feel like a running-human, but Andy luckily had fresh legs and set the pace. We found a footpath along the side of the A162 thankfully, even though in places the moss and grass had decided to take over. The first sight of interest we took a diversion to was an old battlefield outside Towton. In 1461 during the War of the Roses the two sides met here, resulting in a massive loss of life. The area today is farmland, but visitor information and interpretation boards tell the story reminding people of England’s history.
We carried on running south, and checked the map at a petrol/ gas station because we were about the leave the A162. Just as well we did because the next section of road through Monk Fryston was closed to cars, which meant arranging with the support vehicle where to meet next. In the middle of Monk Fryston we spotted our first thatched cottage – they are few and far between in the north of England.
The next two villages, Birkin & Beal were in the middle of fairly flat farmland, where many hedges had been removed giving the area a very open and expansive feel. We crossed the River Aire, and not long later the Aire and Calder Navigation Canal and then found a nearby pub for a short bathroom break.
We ran through the lovely village of Womersley next and then Walden Stubbs, all the time making our way steadily towards Campsall. It was along a stretch of country lane outside the village of Norton that we came across a very bizarre sight. An earth mount covered in sheep! We all came up with various theories as to what the sheep were doing on the mount: enjoying the sunshine; feeling the warmth of the earth through their feet; simply having an afternoon frolic or maybe trying to get a view of the sunset?! But none of us could resist the photo opp and of course, by this point, a short break!!
Campsall finally arrived after three and half hours of running, about four hours of time on the road, 22 miles covered. Thanks to Andy the day flew by and luckily we finished right next to a pub where we met up with the excellent crew of Helen and Alice, and Mum. Next to an open fire we digested the day and began the rehydration/ recovery process – over soft drinks and peanuts! Next stop Worksop!