Walking on Ilkley Moor – but this time with a hat

PIC: Simon Hulme
PIC: Simon Hulme
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A moment of reflection for a lone rambler taking in the view at one of Yorkshire’s most stunning and best-loved locations is the striking subject of this week’s Picture Post.

The image on an autumnal day at Ilkley Moor was captured by Simon Hulme, one of The Yorkshire Post’s award-winning photographers. And unlike the famous song On Ilkla Moor Baht ’at, this person has probably wisely decided to wrap up to make the journey with a hat on.

Of course, the moorland between Ilkley and Keighley is known for even more than being the inspiration for what many consider to Yorkshire’s unofficial anthem, which dates back to the 19th Century and tells of a lover courting the object of his affections, Mary Jane, on Ilkley Moor without a hat.

The moor is home to hundreds of mysterious rock carvings, known as ‘cup and ring’ stones, which are thought to date back to before the Pyramids were built. While some of the carvings from the Neolithic–Bronze Age period of around 4,000 years ago consist of simple cups, others have more complicated patterns but the reason for their creation is not known.

A rather more modern mystery involves the 1987 report by a retired policeman of what he believed to be an alien on the moor; something that became one of Britain’s most well-known reported UFO sightings.

In more recent times, the moor has been back in the news as one of the filming locations for the BBC’s drama Gunpowder, which told the story of the Gunpowder Plot to blow up Parliament and kill King James and starred Kit Harington and Liv Tyler. Other Yorkshire locations, including East Riddlesden Hall, Fountains Abbey and Kirkstall Abbey were also used.

Mandy Sharpe, location manager for Gunpowder, said: “We were looking to recreate England circa 1605 – not necessarily an easy task!

“But in Yorkshire and Derbyshire we were spoilt for choice with a huge array of period country houses, landscapes and historic buildings that worked perfectly.”

Technical details: Fuji XE1 camera with 18-55mm lens, exposure 1/250th sec @ f5.6, iso 200