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Yorkshire Dales Youth Hostel set to go under the hammer

[Friday 08 September 2006]

A YORKSHIRE DALES Youth Hostel is set to go under the auctioneers hammer later this month as its parent association sells the building off to partly fund a restructuring programme.

Keld Youth Hostel goes under the hammer

Bidders at the auction will have a unique opportunity to get their hands on a piece of history by purchasing the former shooting lodge in Keld.

The Keld facility - run by the Youth Hostel Association (YHA) - is one of 32 that will be closed nationally over the next 3 years as part of an £18 Million "restructuring programme", a move aimed at diverting more money to creating and maintaining more popular venues.

Hostels at Earby and Stainforth near Settle are also facing closure, although Stainforth won a temporary reprieve back in March.

Positioned overlooking Keld village at the Western end of Swaledale, the building opened as a youth hostel in 1943 and though the property is still popular with walkers and cyclists, the YHA insist it fails to fall in line with the organisation's new long-term strategy.

"This is a great opportunity for someone to own a stunning historic building in a beautiful part of the North Yorkshire Dales," said YHA Property Manager Simon Brister.

"YHA Keld has been a successful property for many years, but unfortunately usage has fallen recently, despite its strategic location on the Coast-to-Coast Path and the Pennine Way.

YHA Keld has been a successful property for many years, but unfortunately usage has fallen recently

Simon Brister - YHA

"It is one of the properties where three-star status has been awarded by Visit Britain and it is hoped that it may seem attractive to someone wanting to find good budget accommodation to run."

There is still a faint glimmer of hope as the YHA say they would welcome bids from anyone who would like to continue to run the lodge as a Youth Hostel and would be happy to enter into a partnership agreement with the new owners.

Under the scheme, the property would be independently owned and run but would continue to be listed and marketed under the YHA banner.

The auction will take place on 21st September at the Kings Arms Hotel in Kirkby Stephen. A guide price of £250,000 has been placed on the property.

Any interested parties should contact estate agents Penrith Farmer and Kidd on 01768 862 135 for further details.

Your views:

  • A great loss to the Pennine way/Coast to coast - is there any information on who bought it? I heard it might still be a hostel, but cannot find out.

    Patricia Barclay - London

  • Why is the Yorkshire Dales - more than any other county - to be decimated by Youth Hostel cuts? I totally fail to understand especially why Dentdale, and Keld (the latter a key point in the Pennine Way and Coast to Coast) are to close since they are always full when my wife and I have tried to stay at these locations!!.

    The Dales are as popular as ever with visitors and yet now only Hawes, Ingleton and Dufton (under protest) now remain. The YHA has just lost the plot; it is to get young folks out into the countryside. We shall be cancelling our YHA membership for 2007.

    Jon Allen - Ulverston, Cumbria

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