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Ripon Cathedral


Self-guided walks for the Curious...

Explore Ripon city centre with two self-guided heritage walks with a treasure hunt theme. Discover Ripon's "hidden treasures" whilst having a fun day out with family and friends!
Ripon is the 3rd smallest city in England, with a fabulous cathedral that punches well above its weight. Granted a charter by Alfred the Great in 886 AD a Wakeman blows a horn at each corner of the market square every night, signaling vigilance against enemies, a tradition unbroken for a millennium and more. Also nearby is an ancient hotel where in the 18th century Tom Crudd, or “Old Boots” had an enormous nose and prominent chin, entertaining visitors by holding a coin between them! Well, it was their coins and he kept them...


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The Booklet

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Curious About... Ripon

  • An exploration of Ripon's city centre with two self-guided heritage walks with an optional treasure hunt. Completing the treasure hunt keeps everyone actively engaged, and urges you to look up, down and every which-way - so you won't miss out on any of the city's treasures.
    Explore, Discover, and Enjoy!
  • Most clues are chosen for their historical value, so you'll learn about the diverse culture, significant people and extraordinary events which have influenced Ripon in becoming what it is today.
  • This is an outdoor, unsupervised activity - so you can go at a pace which suits you, whilst keeping you healthy!
  • A Curious About walk is a fun and social activity for all the family and friends. Different people can take on different roles - follow the map, identify picture clues, read directions, etc - it's ideal for children from the age of 6, and if you can walk/wheelchair it, you're young enough!
  • The two walks have been designed so that the second one follows on from where the first one ends. Do both, or have a breather and do the second one another day! They both start and finish in the heart of the city - so buses and car parks are easily available to get you there and back.

1. Maze to Ripon Cathedral - 1.5 miles / 2.4 kms
From a maze associated with fertility rites, this walk takes you round the gorgeous Spa Gardens, and past the Spa Baths with its elaborate frontage. Now wend your way to a Dissenters’ Graveyard, before opening onto the historic market place, home to Cabmen, Hornblowers and Wakemen. Next pass a former House of Correction for Vagrants, and an old Prison & Police Station, to end at the magnificence of Ripon’s splendid cathedral.
1.5 hoursOK, but diversion maybe needed to avoid 2 steps

2. Ripon Cathedral to the River Skell - 1 mile / 1.6 kms
Facing the front of Ripon’s beautiful and ancient cathedral this walk plunges quickly into the heart of the city via an historic byeway. Pass the fascinating Town Hall and busy Market Place, through an arcade of shops before opening out onto gardens and back to the cathedral. Down onto an olde-style street, over a bridge and finish your walk alongside the river with views to the cathedral.
1 hourOK

Each booklet has a page dedicated to the history of the city and 2 pages summarising each walk with suggestions on what to visit along the way. Walk 1 has 21 clues & walk 2 has 14 - both with detailed directions to follow. There are interesting stories about important people, places & events along the way; detailed instructions on how to find a clue if you're stuck; and a comprehensive map with the routes marked on.
Buy a booklet by clicking on the Add to Basket button, then either checkout, or continue shopping. Checkout takes you through payments via a quick & secure process managed by a third-party company called SendOwl. At the end of the payment process SendOwl will email you a confirmation email (inc download link if relevant).

You have 14 days to complete your download, and up to 3 attempts are permitted. If you buy the print-at-home version you will need to print it on normal A4 paper and the email you receive, with the download link, explains how best to fold the pages to make it into an A5 booklet. If you buy the download to mobile version you will need pdf reading software on your phone or tablet, eg using the Adobe Acrobat App (free).

Printed Copy
The booklet has a flexible cover, which has been professionally printed. The inside pages are printed to order, to ensure that they are as up-to-date as possible. We post booklets out 1st class Royal Mail, usually the same, or next working day. A small postage & packing charge is added.

"Hi went to Ripon today with your Curious About, walked all the two walks, down by the river and town, really enjoyed it. Didn't know about the area of the river, was lovely. Within cathedral grounds there were cyclamen out around one tree and very gorgeous. Previously hadn't realised how like a box of liquorice allsorts is the town, lovely buildings and very run down ones. Went into swimming pool entrance (didn't take a dip) and saw the tiled entrance area, sulphur water spout and stained glass, great!"

Latest Revision : June 2022


Places you'll pass along the way - tap an image for more detail