Yorkshire cycling website


York to Beningbrough cycle route

Beningbrough Hall

Beningbrough Hall

This cycle route, which is Stage 8 of the Sustrans Slow Tour of Yorkshire, is from the centre of York, north west to the C18th National Trust property, Beningbrough Hall. It's on paths and quiet roads, there are views Ouse, and the destination is interesting and has more than one option for coffee and cakes.

The distance is 9 miles (and you'd normally do it 'there and back', so a total of 18 miles).

York to Beningbrough cycle route: map

The map shows the route from York to Beningbrough Hall in yellow. Sustrans also have a leaflet with an overview of the York to Beningbrough route.

York to Beningbrough cycle route: video

This video shows the route in just over 2 minutes:

York to Beningbrough cycle route: route notes

York to Beningbrough cycle route: the start in York

York railway station

From York railway station (where you may start the route if you're bringing a bike on the train, or hiring a bike on arrival Cycle Heaven), you turn left on Station Road, which becomes Station Avenue. Continue to the river Ouse via Tanner's Moat. Then, the route is on the left hand side of the river as far as Scarborough Bridge.

Scarborough Bridge, York

Scarborough Bridge, York

You have to get across the river on Scarborough Bridge. Unfortunately, there is no ramp to cycle up onto the bridge, just the dreaded 'cyclists dismount' sign. You have to get your bike up the stairs, then down the other side.

Stairs up to Scarborough Bridge, York

Stairs up to Scarborough Bridge

The good news is that the City of York is planning to remodel Scarborough Bridge. There's to be access via stairs and ramps, and the path will be widened from 1.3m to 3.5m.

Alternative route avoiding Scarborough Bridge

Cobbled street by Lendal Bridge

If you don't want to lump your bike up and over Scarborough Bridge, an alternative would be to ride across Lendal Bridge, then turn sharp left back on yourself, down a little cobbled street to the river. Follow Dame Judi Dench Walk along the river bank. The path is narrow until Lendal Bridge Landing, so you may have to wheel your bike. The paving isn't smooth until Scarborough Bridge.

Dame Judi Dench Walk, York

York to Beningbrough cycle route: from Scarborough Bridge to Overton

From Scarborough Bridge, you're on a shared use path by the river, called Joseph Rowntree Walk. Naturally, it is at its busiest near the city centre, with quite a lot of dog walkers. It gets quieter as you leave York behind.

Esplanade, York

You go under the road (Water End) by Clifton Bridge, close to York's Youth Hostel. Next, there's a short wooded section, then you go over a little embankment, and the path continues through a grassy area called Clifton Ings.

Cattle grid on York-Beningbrough route

The path passes Rawcliffe Bar Country Park on the right, with Rawcliffe Ings water meadow on the left, then it goes under the A1237 Ring Road. Shortly after going under the Ring Road, you arrive at a junction with a decorative 'York' sign, where you go left on a road that passes in front of a row of terraced houses.

Decorative York sign between Rawcliffe and Skelton

Decorative York sign between Rawcliffe and Skelton

Continue on a path by the river.

river Ouse near Skelton

There's a bench that incorporates old farm machinery.

Bench made out of old machinery, near Rawcliffe

The path goes over a little bridge.

Little bridge near Skelton

The path ends where it meets Stripe Lane, near Skelton. For a shortened version of the ride, the Sustrans leaflet suggests turning right to Skelton, where the garden centre has a café. Otherwise, turn left on this quiet road, and go under the railway.

Railway bridge near Overton  

You reach the small village of Overton, which gives every appearance of being an idyllic place to live.

Overton village sign

York to Beningbrough cycle route: Overton to Beningbrough Hall

Hay bales near Overton

Immediately after Overton, there are views of open fields, then the road runs between high hedges. You'll encounter very little traffic. There's a bridge over the railway track, and you can see a sign that says 'Edinburgh 200 miles'. Unless that inspires you to head for Scotland, keep going to a junction near the A19.

Edinburgh 200 miles - railway sign

Keep left at the junction, away from the A19. There's now significantly more traffic, some of it travelling fast. You pass The Sidings, which offers accommodation in old railway carriages, and has a restaurant and café (tea and coffee all day).

The Sidings hotel and restaurant

The Sidings hotel and restaurant

The road leads to the western edge of Shipton-by-Beningbrough. Here, the route is left, over the railway again, on Shipton Low Road. There's still a fair bit of fast-moving traffic. When you turn left on Beningbrough Lane, it's quiet once more.

Sign to Beningbrough Hall

When you reach the junction shown in the photo above, Beningbrough (the village) is to the left, but for Beningbrough (the Hall), go straight on to reach the entrance gate.

Entrance gate to Beningbrough Hall

As you ride through the grounds, there's a farm shop and café on the left hand side, with cycle parking, and - in summer at least - a little kiosk called the Shepherd Hut, which sells tea, coffee, cake, and ice cream.

Kiosk at Beningbrough Hall farm shop & cafe

If you continue a little further, you come to a left turn up to the main hall. The cycle parking is in the car park, right by the entrance to Beningbrough Hall. If you've cycled here, you're entitled to go in for half an hour for free, and get a free cup of tea when you buy a biscuit or snack. Brilliant! (The National Trust staff at the entrance were very helpful when I was there - thank you!)

Tea in the Walled Garden cafe, Beningbrough

Walled garden café at Beningbrough

York to Beningbrough cycle route: comments and suggestions

I found this to be a great cycle route. The only inconvenient part is getting over Scarborough Bridge, in York, but it seems that this is going to be put right with a remodelled bridge.

Have you ridden this route? Do you have any comments on or suggestions?

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Beningbrough Hall

Beningbrough Hall

Beningbrough Hall is about 2 miles from Shipton-by-Beningbrough. It's a stately home, which was built by John Bourchier in 1716 in an Italian Baroque style, inspired by his European Grand Tour. It was occupied by the Royal Air Force during World War II, then the Royal Canadian Air Force.

Now it is owned by the National Trust. It displays paintings on loan from the National Portrait Gallery.

There are extensive grounds, with a ha-ha (sunken wall) to prevent livestock from entering the gardens. Those gardens are beautifully cared for and highly colourful. There's a café restaurant in them, called the Walled Garden.

River Ouse between Rawcliffe and Skelton Edinburgh 200 miles signBeningbrough Hall

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