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 45. Ninebanks Hostel & Mohope Valley

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The Ninebanks YHA Hostel

Mohope Valley: The Ninebanks Youth Hostel is in the Mohope Valley at Keirsleywell Row ~ 1 mile south of the A686 Hexham-Alston road in the North Pennines. The house is called Orchard House and housed the mine supervisor in the area, but it became one of the first YHA hostels set up in England. The upstairs of the lodge next to it was a hostel for miners (6 to a bunk!) and below is the downstairs bedroom. HAS IT CLOSED ???

YHA Ninebanks, Orchard House, Mohope, Ninebanks, Hexham, Northumberland, NE47 8DQ

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The Mohope Valley viewed from the A686 Alston Road


As you can see from the pictures below, it is a self-catering hostel, with a well kitted out kitchen and extensive dining area and a lounge area and roaring fire when needed! The office is the smallest we've ever seen and you get the key from the old smithy's cottage to the right of the hostel, which is now the warden manager's cottage. The rooms are very comfortable and named after various minerals - its a favourite hostel for groups of geology students - the Mohope valley, like many in the north Pennines, was an area of mining activity. From the hostel windows there are pleasant views across the valley and there are several walks you can do from the hostel itself.


The Ninebanks Youth Hostel, Orchard House YHA

Various views inside and outside of the Ninebanks Youth Hostel, Orchard House YHA

A circular walk from Ninebanks in the Mohope Valley

The pictures illustrate Walk 15 Mohope Valley from the Walking Country publication ALSTON and ALLENDALE in the North Pennines by Paul Hannon

Mohope Valley: Ninebanks is a small village in south west Northumberland in West Allen Dale. It has the early sixteenth century Ninebanks Tower, often described as a pele tower, but maybe a watchtower? It has four floors and is built of sandstone. Pevsner thinks the lower two light window is early Tudor.


Mohope Valley: If you walks along the road south from the Hamlet of Ninebanks you come to the Church of St Mark built by Haswell in a simple Early English style. It is set in an idyllic location overlooking the valley of the River West Allen and was built at the height of the lead mining boom in 1764 as a chapel of ease in Allendale Parish but the church was rebuilt in 1813 and again in 1871 - the latter is what you see today.


Mohope Valley: St Mark's Church Ninebanks has a small south-west tower and spire.


Mohope Valley: Looking towards the altar and 'angular' apse. St Marks' has no aisles.


Mohope Valley: ? Church, the two west stained glass windows have been built in a deep recessed early Norman style of architecture.


Mohope Valley: Coming down from St Mark's Church you come to Blackpool Bridge over the River West Allen.


Mohope Valley: The confluence of the River West Allen (left) and the Mohope Burn (right).


Mohope Valley: Malakoff Bridge - the footpath sign on the right was the start of the circular walk, at Malakoff Bridge you fork right across the field by the banks of the Mohope Burn.


Mohope Valley: Looking west over the Mohope Burn


Mohope Valley and the Mohope Burn


Mohope Valley and the Mohope Burn


Mohope Valley: The lonely telephone box at Nether House


Mohope Valley: The derelict ruins of the Appletreeshield Chapel built in 1829 as a Primitive Methodist Chapel where the lead miners and their families worshiped. In the 1830's this was an important lead mining area and you will see the remains of spoil heaps and disused filled-in mine shafts scattered around the Mohope valley. Pigs near the footbridge!


Mohope Valley: The ruined house above the farm at Hesleywell


Mohope Valley: Views between Hesleywell and Brodlee


Mohope Valley: The footbridge and old mineshafts near the River West Allen just south-west of Greenleyclough.


Mohope Valley: Sandstone gulley at Greenleyclough.


Mohope Valley: Greenleyclough farm, the farmhouse is dated 1689.


Mohope Valley: Left - the row of houses at the north end of Farneyside, Right - looking across the valley from Farneyside to Ninebanks Hostel - in the middle you can see a spoil heap from one of the lead mines.


Mohope Valley: Descending from Farneyside to the River West Allen


Mohope Valley: Footbridge over the River West Allen


Mohope Valley: The peaceful River West Allen


Mohope Valley: Malakoff Bridge over the Mohope Burn



Mohope Valley: View north from Malakoff Bridge of the Mohope Burn and Mohope Valley


Mohope Valley: Left: Malakoff Bridge as we now retrace our steps back to Blackpool Bridge, St Mark's Church and the hamlet of Ninebanks itself. Right: The road north back to Blackpool Bridge.


Mohope Valley: Blackpool Bridge over the River West Allen


See also pages on Alston, Hexham Town, Hexham Abbey and Allendale and Catton Village (good pub to eat in)




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