Access news: Parking no longer allowed at High Birkwith Farm

Jeff Wade abseiling in Calf Holes, Yorkshire Dales. Photo courtesy of Rob Eavis
Jeff Wade abseiling in Calf Holes, Yorkshire Dales. Photo courtesy of Rob Eavis

Council for Northern Caving Clubs (CNCC) has announced that parking will no longer be allowed at High Birkwith farm, meaning cavers will need to park further back down the road and access the caves on foot, although the landowners have no wish to restrict access to the caves and no permission is required

For many years cavers visiting the Calf Holes, Browgill, Old Ing, Birkwith Cave and Dismal Hill have enjoyed free parking but in February the CNCC announced that following the sale of High Birkwith Farm parking charges were being introduced. Obviously the situation has changed again.

A spokesman for CNCC said: “There have been some unfortunate incidents in the last few weeks. The family’s ten-month-old dog and a sheep have been killed by careless driving – not specifically by cavers as lots of others have been parking at the farm despite the fee – so it is not surprising that they have taken this decision. They do say that cavers have been the most considerate of visitors and I thank everyone for that.  Please continue to be considerate when visiting the caves on foot. You do not need to call at the farm for permission.

“The former parking area has been used by many other folk taking part in different activities in the area. This is not a caving problem and we are lucky to retain unrestricted access to the great caves on High Birkwith land despite all of these issues. Thanks to all those who have helped to maintain this access.”

CNCC is asking cavers to share this message with any friends or clubs that are likely to visit the caves in the area.