One of Yorkshire’s most iconic landmarks has had a facelift this month, after looking far from its best for a few years. The White Horse of Kilburn has had a new lease of life after getting some work done this month,
The Chalk painting on the Hambleton Hills has stood proud looking over the landscape of Sutton Bank since 1857. Forest England, who took responsibility for the Horse’s maintenance in 2018 has given it its annual weeding and spray-painted it to maintain the horse’s integrity.
How was the White Horse of Kilburn created?
It was created in 1857 and constructed by a local schoolteacher and his students. Sutton Bank, geologically, is formed of sandstone and the horse was created by removing the topsoil and exposing the underlying rock and covering it with white limestone chips.
For many years it was managed by the Kilburn White Horse Association until Forestry England took over responsibility in 2018. Due to the steep nature of the feature, access to the surface needs to be by rope and anchor.
The Horse was last painted by the Kilburn White Horse Association. And it has been repainted once more after four years at a cost of over £20,000,
Ed Woollard – Head of Recreation and Public Affairs, Forestry England – Yorkshire District said:
“The Kilburn White Horse is a landmark which symbolises Forestry England’s relationship with the history of the land we manage. The Kilburn White Horse Association maintained the Horse over many years, and we will continue their good work to safeguard this landscape feature. With key groundwork delivered over the last few years and the White Horse once more glistening under its coat of new white paint we can look forward to a regular programme of maintenance. Whilst safety regulations limit volunteer involvement directly on the Horse, we look forward to establishing new opportunities with the community in the near future.”
Michael Graham, Director of Recreation and Wellbeing at the North York Moors National Park Authority said:
“The Kilburn White Horse is among the most iconic sights in Yorkshire and one of the many reasons people come to the North York Moors and Sutton Bank National Park Centre. We know the work that Forestry England puts into maintaining the area, the weeding and repairs, but there’s nothing like a new coat of paint to get it looking its absolute best for all those who see and cherish it.
“The National Park Authority continues to work in partnership with Forestry England to provide opportunities for people to get out into nature and boost their mental and physical wellbeing. Visiting areas such as the Kilburn White Horse is a brilliant and low-cost way to do just that, and we greatly look forward to seeing it fully restored and refreshed.
Feature Image Credit: Forestry England/Crown copyright