Over a thousand years ago, the first monks recognised the beauty of the Dales and established their communities at Bolton Abbey, Jervaulx and
Fountains Abbey. Although the Abbeys are now in ruins (thanks to Henry VIII), you can still feel the power of these splendid buildings, their settings, and the sense of awe they instil.
We still have many small, ancient and beautiful village churches, which offer a place to pause and enjoy quiet contemplation. They tell the story of strong community and families who have remained in this area through the generations. Some have rich, often surprising contents. Most of the churches are open and welcome visitors, to pray and ponder. Take a look at their notice boards for details of village activities such as shows, coffee mornings and talks.
If you'd like to retreat and reflect for longer, Scargill House near Kettlewell offers short breaks and holidays, or you can just pop into their tranquil walled garden. Some of the loveliest and most tranquil sites for quiet reflection are the Quaker meeting houses, particularly at Brigflatts near Sedbergh, Airton near Malham, Settle and Countersett near Bainbridge.