A Spoke-tacular Event!

Do you want a prime Tour De Yorkshire position – with a sip of your favourite beverage as you cheer the cyclists on?

Then you might think Helmsley’s The Black Swan’s LeTour@LeSwan event sounds pretty spoke-tacular…

Those buying food and beverage at the traditional coaching inn on the day the race rides past the front of the venue on Saturday May, 5, will have access to the four star venue’s special outdoor event area.

There will be beer, a hog roast and a big screen so guests can enjoy the build-up and watch the riders pass the finish line.

The Black Swan Tearoom will also be marking the occasion with a selection of blue and yellow cupcakes, also available on the day.

Visitors will be able to soak up the atmosphere of the now famous annual event in the Yorkshire calendar, which was inspired by Tour De France’s visit to the county in 2014.

Sue Barker, executive assistant at The Black Swan, can remember the last time the cyclists whizzed past the venue in 2015.

She said: “Despite what was a bit of a drizzly day the atmosphere was absolutely fantastic.

“It was such an amazing feeling to see so many cyclists ride past at such speed. So memorable and impressive.

“This year we are hoping the sun will be shining and we will have plenty on offer for young and old to make the most of the event.”

She added: “What could be better than soaking up the atmosphere, having a front row position and sipping your favourite tipple too?”.

Stage 3 of the Men’s Race starts at 1.10pm in Richmond and finishes in Scarborough.

It is estimated that the riders will pass Helmsley Market Place at between around 3.05pm and 3.20pm and that the stage will take approximately 4 hours and 30 minutes.

The Black Swan’s LeTour@LeSwan event runs from 12 noon until 5pm on Saturday, May 5, and there will be a gazebo in the event of rain.

For more information register your interest on the Facebook page event here.


5 Bits of Gin Knowledge To Impress

We love gin.

Here at The Black Swan we have a fantastic selection of specialist gins that would delight any G&T lover.

We’ve even launched a Just the Tonic overnight stay – aimed at those of us who want to let the fun be-gin (see what we did there).

So here we aim to arm you with some vital gin knowledge to impress even the hardiest fan.

Here we go!

  1. Ginspiration

Some say the drink – Genever – first originated in Holland and was brought back to England by those fighting in the Dutch War of Independence in the 17th Century.

But gin as we know it was actually developed in London and is a much purer spirit.

  1. Just the Tonic

Gin was originally created to cure ailments! In Holland it was sold in pharmacies until the late 1600s.

  1. All the Bitter

Gin and tonics made their way from India.

Brits moved there after the Sepoy Rebellion of 1857.

The demand for Indian tonic water grew – and gin was added to negate the bitter taste.

  1. Fake it Until You Make It

Running short on supply? Then make your own. Gin is essentially a flavoured vodka – and there are kits to help you with this process.

  1. What Makes You Bad…

Gin and tomato juice, rather than gin and vodka, was all the rage in New York in the roaring 20s as a hangover cure.


Celebrate all things gin – and book our Just The Tonic break.

This gin-tastic break away includes an overnight stay for two, three course dinner in our three AA Rosette Gallery restaurant and our legendary full Yorkshire brekkie.

What’s more you’ll be treated to a pre-dinner speciality gin and tonic.

This offer is priced at £189 per Classic Double, per night.

This offer is subject to availability Sunday – Thursday until 27th September 2018, excluding Bank Holidays and is available to new bookings only.


100 Reasons To Visit Helmsley

Helmsley really is an idyllic location.

It’s a quintessential market town set in the heart of the world famous North York Moors.

We here at The Black Swan are absolutely sold on its charms.

With the Easter holidays in full swing it’s time to put Helmsley on your must visit list…and here are just a 100 reasons why.

1. Award winning afternoon tea at The Black Swan

2. The Verbena Spa at The Feversham Arms Hotel – with a Five Bubble rating from The Good Spa Guide

3. Ryeburn of Helmsley – and its renowned ice creams

4. The National Centre for Birds of Prey and its fabulous displays

5. English Heritage’s Rievaulx Abbey

6. Helmsley Castle really is a must-see

7. National Trust’s Rievaulx Terrace and Temple

8. The Cut-Price Bookstore is one for bookworms

9. Who can resist a peek into the Traditional Sweet Shop?

10. Helmsley Wines is a treasure trove if you’re looking for a special tipple

11. Helmsley Walled Garden

12. The Stick Man

13. Here on a Friday? Then it’s market day!

14. And don’t forget about the indoor market too in the town hall on the third Friday of every month

15. Helmsley Community Library

16. Helmsley Arts Centre

17. Browns Helmlsey; Department store shopping on the North York Moors

18. There are an array of antique shops in Helmsley, all with quirky delights on show

19. Helmsley Galleries – a must for arts fans. Take in its collections at both The Black Swan and The Feversham Arms Hotel

20. Fancy fine dining? The Gallery here at The Black Swan boasts three AA Rosettes whilst The Weathervane at The Feversham Arms Hotel boasts two. Nearby The Star at Harome has a Michelin star.

21. Helmsley Brewing Co. will delight beer fans

22. Duncombe Park stately home

23. There are also parklands at Duncombe and…

24. Beautiful gardens

25. All Saints Church is steeped with history – with stunning features

26. Helmsley Open Air Swimming Pool

27. Helmsley Recreation Ground – with its fantastic outdoor play equipment

28. The walk from Helmsley Castle to Rievaulx Abbey

29. Paddling in Borobeck

30. A spot of tennis at Helmsley Recreation Ground

31. A browse of vintage fashions at Crane Vintage and The Magpie Room

32. Country wear fans can’t do much better than Carters

33. There are posh interior shops aplenty – including Peter Silk of Helmsley Ltd

34. Horse riding at Bilsdale Riding Centre

35. And there’s more for horsey fans too – with Sinnington Point to Point at Duncombe Park

36. We’re well known as a motorcycle meeting point

37. Catch a film at Helmsley Arts Centre

38. Champers by the pool at The Feversham Arms Hotel & Verbena Spa

39. Good old fashioned pub grub; there are plenty to choose from

40. Spoil your pet with a stay at The Black Swan or Feversham. Both are very pet friendly

41. Pimms in beautiful The Black Swan gardens

42. FatFace is one of our cooler fashion haunts

43. Shooting

44. A shopping spree at Pennita

45. Make a hamper at Hunters

46. You won’t get caught short here – with two sets of public loos

47. Fancy a new do? We have a good choice of hairdressers in Helmsley

48. Golden Square Caravan and Camping Park

49. Coffee anyone? You’ll be spoilt for choice here

50. Cocktails at The Cygnet Bar at The Black Swan

51. A Yorkshire breakfast with us

52. Did you know Helmsley is home to the North York Moors HQ?

53. The Cleveland Way starts (or ends) here

54. Say hello to Lord Feversham with his monument in Town Square

55. The Helmsley Murder Mystery Treasure Trail

56. Enjoy the aroma in Thomas The Baker

57. Marley’s Butchers – a proper place to buy your sausages

58. YHA Helmsley

59. A wide selection of holiday cottages and B&Bs – The Black Swan being a fantastic place to dine out

60. A good nose around the charity shops

61. The Inn Way

62. Ebor Way

63. Views from Cowhouse Bank

64. And Newgate Bank

65. Gift shops aplenty

66. The Rural Chauffeur

67. A whole lot of history

68. Helmsley Visitor Information Point

69. Pick up a bit of bling at Libby Butler Jewellers

70. There’s plenty going on at Helmsley Town Hall

71. Catch a craft fair

72. Or a Christmas one, annually at Duncombe

73. In fact Christmas in Helmsley is always special

74. An annual 10K run

75. Duncombe Park Trail Running Festival

76. Helmsley’s Aquathlons at the lido

77. Enjoy the cricket with a tipple or two at Helmsley Recreation Ground

78. A pub crawl

79. Take part in the now annual Dark Skies Festival

80. Get volunteering

81. Watch Helmlsey’s famous town crier

82. The Tour De Yorkshire will be whizzing past in May

83. Floristry fan? The Topiary Tree has a stunning selection

84. The Wool Shop is a crafter’s delight

85. Art lovers will enjoy Lazenby Visuals

86. Forget apps and screens – children will delight in the traditional toys at Claridges

87. Duncombe Sawmill

88. Alfresco dining – poolside, in gardens or overlooking the market square

89. The diverse wildlife

90. Bring your camera, there’s plenty to snap

91. A fish and chip supper from Scotts

92. Therapeutic horticulture

93. Writing courses with those in the know at Helmsley Arts Centre

94. Yoga with Nadja Schutt

95. Charge up your Tesler at The Fev

96. Take a taste of Helmsley home – and pick up fresh deli produce. Yum!

97. Andrew Feather’s Belgian chocolates

98. A photoshoot for your pooch with The Phodographer!

99. The perfect place for a picnic is at the benches below the castle

100. Land Rover off-road driving at Duncombe – for under 17s!

Image Credits: North York Moors, view pic by Tracey Phillips