A community project to create a special place for people and wildlife
Thanks to National Lottery Players
What makes Jubilee Pasture special?
The site of Jubilee Pasture had certain special qualities at the start of the project and, with the funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, we hoped to enhance those, and to encourage people’s appreciation and enjoyment of the site.
To commemorate HM The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, we installed an engraved bench near the stream. We hope that visitors from near and far will take a moment to sit here. Passing through or reaching your destination, it is a beautiful place to reflect or rest.
The sections below introduce some of the features visitors that might like to look out for or learn more about: the site's natural heritage and the cultural heritage and history of the surrounding landscape.
Various flower species characteristic of wet meadows can be found here, thanks to the stewardship of the Wardell family and their predecessors. Across the country, such species have declined as land has been drained, and grassland has been fertilised and reseeded to increase productivity. Species present at the start of the Jubilee Pasture project included great burnet, meadowsweet, meadow vetchling, and lesser stitchwort. Photos of many of the flower species can be seen in the gallery on the main Jubilee Pasture page.
Great burnet and meadowsweet, Jubilee Pasture July 2023
Great burnet with hoverfly
The species in flower change throughout the year. What species can you find? The paintings on the interpretation board may help you identify them. (For a full list of the plant species found, download the plant survey results here and first year report here.)
Before the second world war, it was common for meadows to contain dozens of flower species. Now such meadows are often protected because they are so rare. A nearby example can be seen at Bishop Wilton Poor Land SSSI. To increase the diversity of flowers at Jubilee Pasture, in 2022 we introduced seed from Lower Derwent Valley National Nature Reserve and from a flower-rich meadow created 20 years ago from Poor Land green hay. This seed should include species suited to the conditions at Jubilee Pasture. In 2023 we were rewarded with an abundance of yellow rattle which is a hemiparasite of grasses, reducing their growth and so allowing less competitive flowers to survive alongside them.
We hope that managing the grassland area as a traditional hay meadow will help ensure these species thrive, restoring the wonder of flower-rich meadows to our parish. In years to come we hope summer will bring a kaleidoscope of colour, alive with butterflies, bees and other insects.
Part of the original grassland area has been planted with native broadleaf trees, diversifying the habitat to create a woodmeadow. This was inspired by the reserve created by The Woodmeadow Trust at Escrick, now part of Plantlife.
Although small, the area of mature trees in the corner provides an area with quite a different atmosphere to the meadow area. Follow the worn path in through the aspen trees and take a moment to sit on a log and look up at the canopy. In spring, look down and enjoy the simple beauty of the primroses, violets and bluebells. These classic species of English woodlands have been transplanted from local sources to try to establish a more diverse ground flora. Walk on round and stand under the magnificent horse chestnut tree by the beck. What has it seen in its lifetime? What creatures inhabit those boughs?
Primroses, Jubilee Pasture April 2023
Common dog violets
Cultural heritage and history
Jubilee Pasture is surrounded by a landscape which has been shaped by people over millennia. Visitors can look up to the edge of the Yorkshire Wolds where Neolithic and Bronze Age burial mounds remind us of that history. The Roman road on the horizon probably follows an even older route but was used by Romans travelling from the Humber River to their fort at Malton. In fields on the hillside to the north of Jubilee Pasture, the bumps and dips indicate the remains of the medieval village of Hanging Grimston. Although it was a thriving agricultural community with cultivated fields in the 1300s, multiple factors led to its demise by the early 1600s.
These features of the landscape are highlighted on the interpretation board at Jubilee Pasture. More information can be found at Historic England’s website.
Jubilee Pasture is on the road linking the villages of Bugthorpe and Kirby Underdale. Both are recorded in the Domesday book of 1066 and are attractive villages now largely owned by The Third Earl of Halifax and family trusts. The Bugthorpe Village website history page provides more information about the area and the incorporation of the villages into Halifax Estates. The historic churches of St Andrews, Bugthorpe, and All Saints, Kirby Underdale, are open to visitors and are the subject of fascinating histories by a local historian available on the Garrowby Churches website.
We are lucky to have an extensive network of public rights of way across our parish. A footpath starting at Jubilee Pasture leads visitors to Glebe Farm and then either east towards Kirby Underdale or north towards Hanging Grimston. The National Lottery Heritage Fund supported the production of leaflets which describe routes linking Jubilee Pasture to Bugthorpe and Kirby Underdale, alongside information about the heritage of the area. These can be downloaded here.
Wood Leys round barrow near Uncleby, one of many burial mounds in the area from the Neolithic period (3400-2400 BC) and Bronze Age (2400-800 BC).
Earthworks indicating site of Hanging Grimston medieval village, thriving in the 1300s but depopulated by the early 1600s
Route used by Romans two thousand years ago to travel between the River Humber and their fort at Malton
Panoramic view from Jublee Pasture, painted by local artist Robert Crow