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The White Swan Hotel, one of Middleham's most popular and attractive inns, has recently been extended and refurbished. The purchase of the town's old Post Office has enabled owners Paul and Helen Klein to create a 60-cover brasserie and five new bedrooms. The hotel has 17 individually decorated and cosy bedrooms, which are a sensitive and imaginative blend of the old and the new, retaining the traditional charm of this historic inn while incorporating the most up-to-date facilities. Overlooking the town's picturesque market square and boasting lovely rural views, the White Swan is now a premier town house hotel with superb facilities including free wireless internet for all residents. The area is steeped in history. The castles of Middleham, Richmond and Castle Bolton, all eloquent reminders of Yorkshire's proud past, are within easy reach, as are Jervaulx and Fountains abbeys. Meanwhile the elegant spa towns of Ripon and Harrogate are only 30 and 45 minutes away respectively by car. Both towns have a splendid array of quality shops. Middleham is home to some of the country's leading trainers and the racecourses of Catterick, Ripon, Wetherby, Thirsk and York are all within one hour's drive. Other local activities include fishing on the River Ure, shooting, tennis, golf at Masham, pony-trekking and clay-pigeon shooting. And, for something completely different, the Forbidden Corner at Coverham provides a tantalising journey into the unexpected and unknown. All in all, the White Swan is the perfect base to explore some of Yorkshire's most breath-taking scenery or simply to relax.