Enjoy a great view at Sutton Bank: day or night!

  • Enjoy a great view at Sutton Bank: day or night! © Mike Kipling
    Enjoy a great view at Sutton Bank: day or night! © Mike Kipling
Sutton Bank, on the edge of the North York Moors National Park, provides spectacular views over the Vale of Mowbray. From here you can spot gliders soaring above, watch the weather roll in from the west, gaze at the starry night sky or enjoy a bike ride through beautiful woodland.

Blow away the cobwebs with two short walks from the National Park Centre at Sutton Bank.

The first short walk takes you from the Sutton Bank National Park Centre on a path around Roulston Scar to the White Horse of Kilburn; a figure of a horse cut into the hillside. This well-known landmark is visible from miles around and provides a great talking point and photo opportunity along the route.

Who built it, how and why? (check the information panel in the nearby car park for answers...).

You can also head north from the Sutton Bank National Park Centre along a path to a viewpoint on the escarpment edge of Sutton Bank. Here you can enjoy spectacular scenery, described by author James Herriot as “England’s finest view”. Herriot, who practiced as a vet in the area, wrote many books based on his experiences. These were adapted for the TV series All Creatures Great and Small.

From here you can look out over Garbutt Wood and Gormire Lake. Garbutt Wood is a haven for wildlife and a great place to introduce young adventurers to nature. Gormire Lake was formed during the last ice age, when a gigantic ice sheet scoured out a deep hollow between the crags and a rock ridge to the west. The southern end was blocked by landslips which trapped water coming from springs at the base of the escarpment, causing the lake to form. Try to imagine what the landscape would have looked like when covered with a thick layer of ice – in some places around 250 metres deep. Brrr!

The National Park Centre is an essential visit and brings to life the story of this iconic landscape. Travel in time across millions of years and discover how the landscape has evolved through a stunning animated film, narrated by earth historian and BBC broadcaster, Professor Aubrey Manning. Visit on a cloudless night to discover why Sutton Bank was given Dark Sky Status.

The National Park Centre is also a hub of local bike trails, with cycle hire coming soon if you want to go and explore on two wheels.

Refreshments are available at the Sutton Bank Tea Rooms or the nearby Hambleton Inn: a family-run country pub serving good food and guest beers.

Location map

© Crown copyright and database rights 2013. Ordnance Survey 100021930.
Start: 
Sutton Bank Visitor Centre
Distance: 
Short walk North: 1.6 km (1 miles) / South: 4.8 km (3 miles)
Time: 
¾ hours / 2 hours
OS Map: 
OL26 North York Moors Western area