Wednesday, 1 April 2020

The Hill That The Nuttals Missed

Boy Lee Knott North Face

When the list of hills categorized as Nutalls (610 metres + with 15 metres of renascent was published, this one probably didn't exist. And, because it developed on the grouse moors just above Rookhope in Weardale, the locals, being a significant population of keepers and beaters determined to keep it a dark secret, so as not to attract hordes of bobble-hatted Nutall Baggers

Boy Lee Knott South Ridge

Geologists will confirm that beneath Rookhope, there is a large bulge or bubble of hot granite which was discovered several years ago by the sinking of a borehole. This was subsequently vandalised by local teddy boys who had just attended an exciting Adam Faith concert in Darlington and, fired up by half a pint of dark mild each, chucked a load of rocks down the hole and bunged it up. This disturbed both the geologist and the geology.  And so, at some point in the 1950's, Boy Lee Knott (610.6 metres), under enormous Earth-based pressure emerged suddenly and steaming from the moorland, obliterating grouse butts numbers 3 to 12 and ruining one of the drives. This was only the latest in a series of volcanic incidents, the previous one being 150 million years ago. So these things are quite regular in geological terms, but a bit of a surprise in Weardale, specially in the Smoke Room of the Rookhope Inn.
LTD Struggle with  Boy Lee Knott screes

Boy Lee Knott summit in summer

The name "Boy Lee Knott" comes from an old local legend about a young lad called Lee who fell in love with t'maister's youngest daughter, Sharon. (T'maister was a Yorkshireman by the way, not that this is really all that relevant.) Such was t'maister's fury that the Boy Lee was instantly dismissed from his post as ore washer and sock darner in the local lead miners' shop. (He was said to have a defective sense of smell)  So, he and Sharon eloped and were never seen again. There are tales that t' maister's men  subsequently committed a dastardly deed, dumping the bodies of the lovers down a shaft and,  shortly afterwards  on 31st March 1886 there was a fire at Grimley Manor in which t'maister was said to have perished; the Boy Lee's dad, Isaac Isembard Moses Lucifer Lee and his mates in the smokeroom at the  Rookhope Inn being a suspect, although, it is said that some of the local miners were quite a bit miffed about having to fettle their own socks. Ever since then , on the night of March 31st/April 1st t'maister's ghost is seen to pursue the Boy Lee and Sharon across the Nookton Edge crying the phrase "Come here yer little git" into the wind. Their ghostly shapes are seen to disappear behind the looming bulk of Boy Lee Knott and not come out of the other side.

I've decided to expose the hill to Ramblers and Baggers everywhere and I submit a couple of pictures of Boy Lee Knott in winter garb. I'm not saying exactly where it is because finding it would be so much fun. Except to say that it's just opposite and a good kilometre away from Flamey Knott and not all that far away from Steamy Knott.


John J said...

Yes Michael..... 😂

AlanR said...

Mr Lee and Sharron got a fast boat to the US of A where he got in some bother, he said “oh darn it” when he was commander of the confederate states. Small world.