Forum Members Meet Up 25th June 2014



As part of our week’s holiday in Yorkshire, we decided to invite forum members for a get-together on Wednesday 25th June. Tony, Mach, Webby, Pen, Pete.r and his wife Joyce, Hollinhare and Ben were all free on that day so we arranged to meet at the Harewood village hall at 9.30 a.m.

However, plans nearly came to grief as an accident on the A1, and also in Harewood early that morning, caused a slight panic as there was a distinct possibility people might arrive late, or not at all and me nearly having kittens! Thankfully, plans didn’t go too far astray and we quickly bundled everyone into two cars and set off for the first location to visit the Packhorse Bridge at Dob Park near Otley.

There is a lovely one hours (approximately) circular walk which goes along by the River Washburn, complete with a (sort of) lightning tree, and through wildflower meadows to the bridge. The return route we took was along narrow country lanes with far-reaching views.

 Click images to enlarge



The Packhorse Bridge location can be seen in episode "The Prize" where Steve tips water out of his boots after helping Dora and Kalinka out of the river.



  We could have spend much longer in this beautiful setting, it was so peaceful and unspoilt. 

But lunch was booked at the Scotts Arms pub in Sicklinhall so we had to tear ourselves away and walk back along quiet lanes admiring the views as we went and head off to the pub. I have to say I had the biggest steak and ale pie I’ve ever seen!! Pen couldn’t make the first location visit but she joined us for lunch and her eyes nearly popped out of her head at the size of her meal! Pete and Joyce had decided to look around Thorner village in the morning, the location for many Follyfoot scenes, and they also joined us for lunch afterwards.

We waddled out of the pub and set off for a visit to the Hallowed Ground. The weather had been sunny for a week or so beforehand and the ground was mercifully dry underfoot.



There has been a fence erected around the big lake, which is a shame.



However, the second lake was just as beautiful.


We headed on up the hill and gazed across the valley to the farm.



Despite all the changes to the house, barns and lake it's still a picturesque scene.



A quick group photo before heading back to the Harewood Village Hall



Combs Pit, Thornhill Colliery Visit 26th June 2014


On Thursday 26th June at 10a.m. we met up at a location which was new to us. Rick Horvath who works as Support Officer at Kirklees Building Services in Dewsbury contacted me when he noticed there was no information about episode "The Innocents" in the locations section on our website. He'd recognised certain areas from the episode at the site where he works and he said he could send me a few photos if I was interested. Was I interested? I nearly bit his hand off! 

He then spoke to his work colleagues about the filming of Follyfoot and they were intrigued. They had no idea it had been filmed there. As I was going to Yorkshire on holiday I asked him if there was any chance I could visit the site. He thought it might be possible. Then I decided to bite the bullet and ask if others from the forum could go too and we could extend the get-together to include Thursday. Anyway to cut a long story short Rick asked his bosses and they gave permission for us to have a look around the site. 

We had the added bonus that Rick asked Edwin Hepworth, a former electrician at Combs pit, Thornhill Colliery, to join us and share his memories. He worked at the pit from the 1950s to its closure in 1972. He readily agreed as he hadn't set foot in the place since the mine had shut down. We enjoyed talking to him and hearing his stories of the mine and the local area. 


Rick on the left and Edwin


We donned lovely Hi Viz waistcoats and set off to the entrance of the old mine.



We spent an enjoyable hour scratching our heads trying to suss out various locations, from screen caps I had printed off, with the help of Rick, Edwin and Andrew Bates (pointing in the middle photo) 



The building we are standing next to in the photo below used to be an office but Rick told us "the girls refused to use it after they heard miners in pit clogs walking about, so they moved to another building with no further trouble." 


There were two tragedies at this mine, one in 1893 and then another in 1947 when miners and pit ponies were killed. You can read more about this and a chequered history of Combs Pit HERE

We were kindly offered drinks in the board room which were gratefully received and we looked at photographs of the old mine which were hanging on the wall. Rick showed us engineering drawings and papers of Thornhill Colliery which belonged to his grandfather Edgar Wilby who worked at the pit for over 25 years. Rick told us "His shift suffered during the mining tragedy of 1947. He was away on holiday with my grandmother and mum in Scarborough at the time."

Edwin brought along a copy of Thornhill Parish Church magazine dated 1964 with a special feature on Thornhill Colliery. Included in the article is a photo of Edwin standing alongside other electricians.

You can read the magazine HERE

Feeling suitably refreshed, we handed back our Hi Viz jackets and Rick took us on a walk around the perimeter of the site. It was a pleasant stroll (apart from the huge amounts of dog poo everywhere!) which took us partly along a disused railway line, under a stunning railway bridge and up a cobbled path. A map showing the old railway route can be seen on Lost Railways Yorkshire website

The tour ended at the Alma pub just in time for lunch. Rick said "the Alma Inn was a 'Spit 'n Sawdust' pub at the turn of last century when my great grandfather Frank Wilby would put a 'tanner' (sixpence in old money or two and a half pence in today's brass) on the bar and that would buy his Ale for the week after a hard day's graft at the coalface."



Then and now comparisons for episode "The Innocents" can be seen HERE


I’d like to thank Rick Horvath for contacting me and making our tour an enjoyable and interesting one. Also thanks to Andrew Bates of Kirkless building services who gave permission for the visit and a huge thanks to Edwin Hepworth for joining us and sharing his memories.

We had perfect weather and it was a very enjoyable two days spent with folly friends. Roll on the next meet up!

Photos and article by Jane.

June 2014

UPDATE 2015: I'm so glad we had the opportunity to visit Thornhill Colliery as the site has now closed and the buildings have been demolished to make way for a housing estate.



Tony's Location Videos


During my recent trip to Yorkshire for a forum meet up I decided to visit several Follyfoot locations on my motorbike and make a few helmet cam videos.


The Palladian Villa at Stockeld Park was the Colonel's residence, this is the first thing Dora would have seen as she was driving through the famous gates in Episode 1 "Dora".

Sincere thanks to the owners of Stockeld Park for giving me permission to film this video, Thank you!





Several locations were filmed at Thorner Village High Street, including: The School (now the Parish Centre) in Episode 11 "Out of the Blue Horse", The florist shop in Episode 13 "Fly Away Home", The  Saddler Shop, Hat Shop and The Ford in Episode 2 "The Four Legged Hat". The church at the end of the street can be seen in some of the shots behind Dora and Ron.





This is Swindon Lane that leads to Kirkby Overblow. At 02:01 you will see the lay by that Steve turned into on Ron's bike. The section of road at 02:06 was also used in other motorbike scenes. At 07:48 you will see the Clap Gate Inn which appeared in Episode 11 "The Standstill Horse". The Inn is now a row of cottages and the video ends at Sicklinghall.





The Forge appeared in Episode 13 "Walk in the Wood" and Wike Lane appears in Episode 12 "Birthday at Follyfoot", where you see Ron riding his motorbike towards us at 02:26. The Barn at 03:53 can also be seen in the background as Ron rides past it.




Leaving the grounds of Harewood Estate passing the Harewood Arms and arriving at Harewood Village Hall. The Village Hall is where Dora went to a disco in Episode 6 "The Challenge".





This section of Swindon Lane was used when Steve rides Ron's bike and turns off to ride across the fields to the farm, the turn off is shown clearer at the end of the video. It was also used to film the scene where Dora is on the back as Steve rides Ron's bike.


Go to top