I had to look up the meaning of a preceptory - it's a monastery of the Order of the Knights of the Temple of Jerusalem.
If you take the footpath up to this little spot you'll still be able to see the remains of the small chapel, base of the altar and three stone coffins. It's thought that Roger Mowbray founded the Penhill preceptory around 1142, but by 1328 it was already ruined.
So who were the Knights Templar? After Jerusalem was captured from Muslim control during the Crusades, European Christian pilgrims started to visit the Holy Land but they faced many dangers along the way. A knight called Hugues de Payens created a military order in 1118 to protect travellers, and they established a base in Jerusalem, becoming known for their austere white habits bearing a simple red cross. They eventually had the blessing of the Pope and gained special rights such as being exempt from paying tax.
I was quite fascinated to find out that the Knights Templar set up their own banks and even had a system that enabled pilgrims to deposit money in their home country and then withdraw it in the Holy Land. They also lent money to European nobles. The order grew in status and they were able to establish new chapters but their assets were eventually seized by the King of France and then King Edward II of England.
Once you've discovered the Preceptory, you can wander back towards Swinithwaite to enjoy a drink or meal at Berry's Farm Shop. Thanks to Tim Durham from Wensleydale Experience for these photos.