This week we took a group of very enthusiastic 6-7 year old girls on their annual residential visit to the Bewerley Park Centre near Pateley Bridge. We spent the first day in Fishpond Woods. The woods gets its name from the large pond in the middle of the wood. It is thought that the pond dates back to monastic times and provided a regular supply of fish for Bewerley Grange, one of Fountains Abbey’s farms. We spent the morning in the woods mini shelter building and here is the story of what happened.
Good afternoon and welcome to this week’s episode of ‘Through the Keyhole’ presented by myself David the gnome and Lloyd the goblin. This is the opportunity for us to glimpse inside the homes of the rich and famous. This week we will be visiting the condos and apartments situated in the exclusive hillside development of Fishponds Wood. Many of the Moss Fairy residents moved into this area many years ago after their previous community was destroyed by a large fire breathing dragon called Drago. Now protected by a very ingenious device a designed by a local resident, they live a peaceful, contented existence. Let’s meet them now as we go through the keyhole with Lloyd.
Our first residence is built near the main path, amongst the roots of a large beech tree. Local builder B. Byrne has taken full advantage of the natural materials available. A large piece of bark provides stability to the property, while draught proofing is providing by green moss, ensuring the property is warm and cosy during the worst of the winter weather. A nice finishing touch is provided by a snail shell perched high on the roof.
Winding our way up the hillside it is easy to miss the next condo which perches in a small hole within a large beech tree. Architects Ashton, Nuttall and Thompson have cleverly combined elements of the Neo classical period with a more natural, rustic look. Large wooden pillars flank the flame proof door and a large picture window at the back of the property allows natural light to flood into the house. The condo is perfectly placed to reach the cinema next door, with its large wide leaf screen and moss seating.
The residents of the next apartment have used the local natural features to create a stunning residence. Inspired by the architect Salva Bulmer, the stick framework of their apartment is built around an old tree stump, giving the apartment a central lobby and an open plan feel, while retaining the intimacy of a small countryside cottage. The flame doorway leads you under the archway into the main of the apartment which is lined with moss and leaves.
Climbing further still up the hillside, one comes across the final three properties in the community. The occupants of the first property, known locally as ‘B and B’ (Bakari Singer and Bell), have recently relocated from the path lower down the hillside as they were concerned about a return visit from the dragon. Their house is small, compact and environmental friendly, with a natural roof made of moss and leaves.
Nestled deep under the roots of a very large old beech tree, the architects of our next apartment Karian Castro and Laird have only recently set up in business but the future already looks bright. The apartment is all on one level, open plan and insulated to the highest standards with moss.
The final property, designed by interior designer Costanzo, enjoys a view across the woods to the large Fishponds which give the woods their name. A large window in the front of a tree stump frames the view. The back of the house is protected with a finely built wooden wall and, again, inside the floor is lined with moss and leaves.
It is delightful to see so many unique properties built in such a peaceful, tranquil setting. It must be very reassuring for the residents to know that they are are now safely protected by the flame proof doors and they can now live happily together, safe in the knowledge that they and their wonderful houses are protected from fire breathing dragon. It is now time to say goodbye to the residents of this stunning hillside community and hand you back to the studio and David the gnome. Goodbye.