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Constructed in the early 1800s by the beginning of the early 20th Century the Wheatsheaf operated both as the local coaching inn and the village butchers.
For over a hundred years the Wheatsheaf Hotel in Wensleydale was principally in the proprietorship of only five families; the Kilburns, the Bells the Armstrongs, the Mackays and now the Mitchells. Descendents of William Kilburn still live in two neighbouring cottages, perhaps therefore it is not surprising that the essence of this family run business, is its traditional hospitality and its reputation for providing a warm welcome to all who visit.
The Wheatsheaf’s charm and its stunning location is timeless but now in the early 21st Century these traditional qualities have been enhanced through careful development, both of services and particularly the physical expansion of the property. This modernisation programme, coupled with consistently high hospitality standards provides a customer experience focused entirely upon your relaxation and the Wheatsheaf, a good pub and inn offering accommodation in Wensleydale, is the ideal venue for “chilling down and de-stressing”.
The development program was completed in 2006 with the opening of a new fully integrated wing, with larger bedrooms in a contemporary and modern style, taking the letting capacity to 25 residents in the Wheatsheaf’s 13 rooms.
All the traditional bedrooms in the Inn were refurbished by spring 2007.
Notwithstanding the major improvements that have recently been made, many of our visitors and residents are fascinated and entranced with the history of the Wheatsheaf and its immediate environs. Throughout the bar and snug area there are many old photographs depicting life and times in the village over the last one hundred years….you can spot a number of our locals in these old images!
During the second world war the Wheatsheaf hosted two internationally acclaimed celebrities from the worlds of film and novel. Alf Wight (later to write his novels eg “It shouldn’t happen to a vet” under the pseudonym James Herriot) spent his honeymoon with Helen his wife in November 1941-while testing cattle for TB in surrounding farms. His son Jim Wight very kindly gave to the Wheatsheaf a copy of Alf’s correspondence to his own father describing both the circumstances of their wedding and the experiences they shared during their honeymoon in Carperby at the Wheatsheaf.
Unbelievably, only six weeks later, in January 1942, Greta Garbo stayed following an evening entertaining troops at Catterick Garrison with Henry Hall the band leader. All their names appear on the very same page in the old register of guests: (click on the image to see the full page)
However one of our favourite anecdotes came from an elderly lady who stayed recently telling us that, when she stayed in the 1930’s, on the night before her wedding, she remembered escaping from the room above the bar by climbing down and over the public bar’s old bay window before tiptoeing through the village to meet her lover at his lodgings for the night. This is but one of the very many happy memories that returning guests have shared with us over the years, which have included proposals of marriage at the Falls and in the woods, and many honeymoons and childhood holiday recollections too.