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I’ve made four journeys on the road between Ilkley and Skipton this week – and inevitably been held up by the traffic lights where a new wall is being built near Chelker reservoir. Work colleagues who travel this way on a daily basis stopped admiring the craftsmanship many weeks ago, and now tap out their frustration on the steering wheel or curse out loud in their private little mobile boxes… we can lip read you know! Waiting in line I got to thinking about wall building in general and how precious and iconic they are in the Dales. Man made they might be but they certainly add beauty and art to the landscape. As the early morning mist was disappearing on Sunday I drove up to Winskill, overlooking Ribblesdale, and walked alongside an amazing wall which seems always to point towards Penyghent. It follows the contour of the land so accurately, no matter what obstacles get in its way. As you can see from this photo, a steep natural escarpment didn’t put off one wall builder from completing his task… I bet he finished his job a heck of a lot quicker than the guys at Chelker, too.

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