Prince of Aysgarth

As a child one of my favourite films was Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991), starring Kevin Costner sporting the most appalling mullet hairdo while making zero effort to mask his American twang. I remember ‘videoing’ the film when it came on television one Christmas, and almost wearing out the tape with rewatching it. I saw it again on Netflix a few months back, and laughed at the idiosyncrasies and anachronisms.

One of its most famous scenes was filmed at relatively local Aysgarth Falls in the Yorkshire Dales. I called for the first time this month, not realising that it was the spot at which Robin of Locksley bested John Little in a fight, cementing a lifelong friendship. Yet even without that little piece of Hollywood playing out in the Ure, the falls would be a stunning location whatever the film. I sometimes marvel at the splendour of our fallen world; though corrupted by sin and cursed for rebellion, it remains stunningly attractive and a fitting salute to our God’s creative brilliance. We called on a wet, late winter's morning, but the Falls were none the poorer.

Not only will the new earth be even better, but it will be without a Hollywood. Thank God.