North Yorkshire

Kirkbymoorside is a town in the Ryedale former district of North Yorkshire.

The town is just outside the southern edge of the North York Moors National Park, between Thirsk and Scarborough on the A170.

Thirsk is about 20 miles to the west and Scarborough 25 miles to the east. A little nearer along the same road are Helmsley, about 6 miles to the west, and Pickering about 7 miles east. Using minor roads, Malton is around 13 miles to the south-south-east.

Butter Cross, KirkbymoorsideThe town holds a Wednesday market, a tradition which dates back to 1254.

At the edge of the Market Place, the town has coaching inns, some still showing features of their original architecture and the earliest of which date back to the 17th century.

There are also many other listed buildings in Kirkbymoorside. The town's Church of All Saints is grade one listed, with its nave and arcades dating back to the 13th century. There are, however, traces of worship at the site from at least the 9th century. The church was expanded in the 14th and 15th centuries and it underwent a restoration by inspired church architect Sir George Gilbert Scott in 1874.

 Town features

Kirkbymoorside is close to the North York Moors National Park.
The town has a rich variety of traditional shops. Kirkbymoorside offers antiques.
Kirkbymoorside holds a traditional outdoor market - on Wednesdays.
The town has a Post Office.
The town has a pharmacy.
Kirkbymoorside has a choice of pubs.
Inn dining can be found in Kirkbymoorside.
Takeaway food outlets in the town include fish and chips, chinese.
There are public toilets in the town.
Locations of toilets and opening times can be found at this North Yorkshire Council - Public toilets web page.
Kirkbymoorside has a community hall - Kirkbymoorside Memorial Hall.
The town has a community library.
Kirkbymoorside has a school.
Places of worship: Anglican, Methodist, Quaker.
Places to stay in Kirkbymoorside include hotel, guest house, inn, holiday home accommodation.


Bus travel

The town has buses to neighbouring towns and villages.

Road travel

Kirkbymoorside can be reached via the A170 .

Places to visit

North York Moors National Park

The Ryedale district north of Helmsley, Kirkbymoorside and Pickering includes some of the beautiful scenery of the North York Moors National Park. The park covers a total of 554 square miles (1,435 square kilometres). Within its area are moorland and coast, historic stateley homes, remains of castles and abbeys and attractive villages. The North Yorkshire Moors Railway provides a historic railway journey into the National Park from Pickering. For more information see our page dedicated to the North York Moors.

Pickering Castle

Pickering Castle

Castlegate, Pickering
Pickering Castle was originally built as a Norman motte and bailey timber castle at a time when the Manor of Pickering was held by the king, William the Conqueror, as recorded in the Domesday Book in 1086. It was mostly rebuilt in stone between 1180 and 1236, although the stonework of the outer bailey was not completed until about 1326 in the reign of Edward II. The castle then guarded the nearby forest, was also used as a court and prison and was the place where Edward II's royal stud was managed. The castle's remains are well-preserved in comparison to some other castles as it did not suffer during the War of the Roses or the English Civil War. The castle is managed by English Heritage.

More information at the  English Heritage - Pickering Castle website.
Find on map:  Pickering Castle

Helmsley Castle

Helmsley Castle

Castlegate, Helmsley, North Yorkshire
Helmsley Castle is at the western side of Helmsley overlooking the River Rye. The ruins provide an insight into the development and remodelling of the castle between the 12th and 14th centuries and the Tudor mansion house created on the site in the 16th century. An unusual feature of the early castle was the creation of two great towers rather than the more common single keep. Through most of its life it was the centre of a family estate, but the castle was briefly in royal hands when in 1478 it was bought by Richard, Duke of Gloucester, who owned the castle until his death as King Richard III in 1485. In the English Civil War the castle had been held for the Royalists, but surrendered to Parliament in November 1644, after which it was slighted. The castle, managed by English Heritage, is generally open daily through the spring and summer with Friday and weekend opening times through the autumn and winter months. Helmsley is also the location of an English Heritage archaeology store for the north of England which can be visited on pre-bookable tour dates.

Find out more at the  English Heritage - Helmsley Castle website.
Find on map:  Helmsley Castle

Rievaulx Abbey

Rievaulx Abbey

Rievaulx, near Helmsley, North Yorkshire
The first Cistercian abbey in the North of England was founded in 1132 but became one of the most important in the country, quickly growing to a 650-strong community within its first 30 years. However by the time of supression of the monastery in December 1538 the number had fallen to 23 monks. The abbey in the valley of the River Rye in the North York Moors National Park has substantial remains, particularly of its 13th century church which were saved from further collapse by repair work 100 years ago. The abbey also has a museum containing architectural stonework and other artefacts found at the site, including chess pieces, coins and small personal possessions. The visitor centre also has a tearoom. Rievaulx is 2.5 miles west-north-west of Helmsley and about 11 miles east of Thirsk. The abbey is managed by English Heritage.

More information at the  English Heritage - Rievaulx Abbey website.  Find Rievaulx Abbey on map

Ryedale Folk Museum

Ryedale Folk Museum, Hutton-le-Hole
Main Street, Hutton-le-Hole
Located in the picturesque village of Hutton-le-Hole, The Ryedale Folk Museum has thousands of fascinating objects located outdoors and in more than 20 heritage buildings which explore the history around Ryedale. Check out the museum's website for opening days and times (Friday and winter closing in 2022).

Further details at the  Ryedale Folk Museum website.
Find on map:  Ryedale Folk Museum

National Centre for Birds of Prey

Duncombe Park, Helmsley
Falconry has been part of life on the Duncombe Park estate at the edge of Helmsley for more than 150 years, but it is only over the past decade or so that it has become established as the National Centre for Birds of Prey. The centre has falcons, hawks, buzzards, eagles and owls and offers flying demonstrations every day. The centre is set in woodland at Duncombe Park, along a drive from Buckingham Square at the end of Castlegate and about a mile from the centre of Helmsley. Visitors to the centre can also enjoy trails through the parkland at Duncombe Park.
Further details at the  National Centre for Birds of Prey website.
Find on map:  National Centre for Birds of Prey

Helmsley Walled Garden

Cleveland Way, Helmsley
Helmsley Walled Garden is situated alongside Helmsley Castle. It was originally built in 1759 to grow fruit and vegetables for the family owners of the Duncombe Park estate. In the 1990s it was brought back from a period of decline to be a five-acre garden of therapeutic horticulture which is now a visitor attraction. It includes a mixture of formal gardens, meadows and community plots gardened by volunteers. For admission pricing and opening times check the Helmsley Walled Garden website. In 2022, the garden is open daily except Monday and Tuesday.
Further details at the  Helmsley Walled Garden website.
Find on map:  Helmsley Walled Garden

Nunnington Hall

Nunnington HallSituated on the banks of the River Rye, around a 7 mile drive from Helmsley, 10 miles from Malton and 13 miles from Pickering, Nunnington Hall offers the chance to explore period rooms of a Yorkshire manor house. Although there has been a large house at the site since the mid 13th century, the present Hall has developed from one of the Tudor period with extensive remodelling in the late 17th century. The house has an organic walled garden, spring flowering meadows and a tea room. It also houses one of the finest collections of scale miniature period rooms, offers a changing programme of art and photography exhibitions and hosts various events including the Ryedale Book Festival. The house is managed by the National Trust.
More information at the  National Trust - Nunnington Hall web pages.
Locate on map:  Nunnington Hall

Byland Abbey

Byland Abbey

Byland, near Coxwold, North Yorkshire
Byland Abbey features the ruins of one of the largest and grandest Cistercian abbey churches in England. Completed towards the end of the 12th century, it is noted for its Gothic architecture which inspired that in other church buildings, including York Minster. The lower portion of a huge rose window gives some idea of the scale and magnificence of the building before the dissolution of the monastery. The abbey also has tiled floors surviving from the 13th century. The abbey is in the North York Moors National Park about 5 miles south-west of Helmsley (6 miles by road) and 8 miles east-south-east of Thirsk (12 miles by road). The abbey is managed by English Heritage.

More information at  English Heritage - Byland Abbey website.
Find on map:  Byland Abbey


North Yorkshire Moors Railway

GrosmontPickering to Goathland, Grosmont and Whitby
A heritage railway running for 18 miles through the beautiful scenery of the North York Moors National Park. The line runs from Pickering, through Goathland, one of Yorkshire's famous TV and film locations to Grosmont with some journeys extended over the Network Rail Esk Valley line to the picturesque seaside harbour town of Whitby. The 10,000-member charitable Trust behind the railway celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2017 and the line is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the restoration of passenger services in 2023. With more than 350,000 passengers a year the North Yorkshire Moors Railway is possibly the most popular heritage railway in the world.

For details see the  North Yorkshire Moors Railway website.

Flamingo Land

Kirkby Misperton
Opened as a zoo in 1959, Flamingo Land has since the 1970s been blended with a growing number of theme park rides and now also offers a holiday village. The resort, covering 375 acres, is situated 3 miles south-south-west of Pickering and 5 miles north of Malton.

Emergency services

North Yorkshire Police  North Yorkshire Police website.

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service  North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service website.

Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust  Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust website.

Local government

Civil parish council

Kirkbymoorside Town Council
Provides some local services in the area.
Link to council website:  Kirkbymoorside Town Council

District authority Abolished

Ryedale District Council

Ryedale District Council ceased from April 1, 2023. From 1974 it was one of seven shire districts of North Yorkshire. The area was subject to boundary tweaking in 1996 when around half its original population were moved into an expanded City of York unitary authority district. With its administrative centre in Malton, Ryedale District Council continued to cover around 575 square miles and to serve around 52,900 residents. Ryedale also included the towns of Helmsley, Kirkbymoorside, Pickering and Norton-on-Derwent and many villages. Much of the north of the area lies within the North York Moors National Park while the west of the district includes most of the Howardian Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

The North Yorkshire Council unitary authority takes over services previously operated by Ryedale District Council. These included local planning, waste collection, street cleaning, parks and car parks, housing and markets.

Places in the former  Ryedale district.

Unitary authority New

North Yorkshire Council

The North Yorkshire Council is a new unitary authority formed from the previous County Council from April 1, 2023. It covers the existing county duties including highways, schools, libraries and transport planning over an area of around 3,085 square miles while also taking over the responsibilities of the seven huge district authorities also created in 1974 — Craven, Hambleton, Harrogate, Richmondshire, Ryedale, Scarborough and Selby — these including local planning, waste collection, street cleaning, parks and car parks, housing and markets.

Councillors were elected to the County Council in 2022 and continue as councillors of the new North Yorkshire Council unitary authority. In that election, the Conservatives gained a slim majority gaining 47 of the 90 seats.

Places in  North Yorkshire

Link to council website:  North Yorkshire Council

Political composition:

4613119 NY Ind5411
90 members

NY Ind = North Yorkshire Independents group     E = By-election in Eastfield division pending on May 25, 2023.
Composition and groupings as at May 4, 2023

County authority Abolished

North Yorkshire County Council

North Yorkshire County Council was a shire county authority which existed between 1974 and April 1, 2023, covering duties including highways, schools, libraries and transport planning. It was transformed into the North Yorkshire Council unitary authority on April 1, 2023, while the seven huge district authorities within — Craven, Hambleton, Harrogate, Richmondshire, Ryedale, Scarborough and Selby — were also abolished.

Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner

Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner North Yorkshire
Covers the county of North Yorkshire and  City of York.
 Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner North Yorkshire website.

Ceremonial county

North Yorkshire


Before 1974: Within the North Riding of Yorkshire, which had the River Derwent as its southern boundary.
1974: Ryedale district of new County of North Yorkshire was formed mostly from parts of the North Riding, but also areas of the East Riding of Yorkshire south of the River Derwent, including Norton-on-Derwent. Malton was the administrative centre of the Ryedale district.
1996: Ryedale was reduced in size when the City of York expanded and became a unitary authority. Although the area lost was relatively small compared to the overall area of Ryedale, it did house around half its original population.
2023: Ryedale district and the County of North Yorkshire were abolished as a new unitary authority of North Yorkshire was formed covering the county area and the seven large district authorities within it, including Ryedale.

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