Mallory sighting 60 years before he was found

Mystery: Nobody knows whether Mallory reached the summit. His remains were not recovered until 1999

Mystery: Nobody knows whether Mallory reached the summit. His remains were not recovered until 1999

Everest pioneer Frank Smythe ‘saw frozen remains of George Mallory in 1936’: Mountaineer’s diary reveals sighting SIXTY YEARS before legendary explorer was found

  • Mr Smythe, who came within 800ft of peak, saw body through a telescope
  • He wrote of the sighting to Edward Norton, who had climbed with Mallory
  • But he asked that he keep it secret to avoid causing a sensation
  • A copy of the letter was found in an old diary by Mr Smythe’s son Tony

The frozen body of legendary explorer George Mallory was spotted by a fellow pioneer on the slopes of Everest decades before the remains were finally recovered, a forgotten diary has revealed.

Frank Smythe, who made several attempts on the world’s highest peak in the 1930s, wrote that he saw what he believed to be the remains of Mallory and his partner Andrew Irvine through a powerful telescope in 1936.

Mr Smythe’s report is the only sighting of Mallory’s remains before they were eventually found by Conrad Anker in 1999. It was mentioned in a letter to Edward Norton, who led the expedition in 1924 when Mallory disappeared in a bid for the summit.

A copy of the letter was found in the back of the explorer’s diary by his son, Tony Smythe, while researching a book about this father’s life.

Treacherous: Frank Smythe says he saw Mallory's remains at the bottom of a gully on the face of Mount Everest

Treacherous: Frank Smythe says he saw Mallory’s remains at the bottom of a gully on the face of Mount Everest

According to the Observer, the letter said: ‘I was scanning the face from base camp through a high-powered telescope last year when I saw something queer in a gully below the scree shelf.

‘Of course it was a long way away and very small, but I’ve a six/six eyesight and do not believe it was a rock.

‘This object was at precisely the point where Mallory and Irvine would have fallen had they rolled on over the scree slopes.’

Mr Smythe explained that he felt compelled to search the area as it was directly above the point at which a previous expedition found an ice axe, which is believed to have marked the scene of a fatal accident.

Although Mr Smythe, a prolific author, wrote extensively about his expeditions, he left out details of the sighting of Mallory, and made clear in his letter to Mr Norton that it was not to be written about, in case it triggered a storm of media speculation.

It is one of the most celebrated mysteries of modern mountaineering whether Mallory and Irvine managed to reach the summit of Everest before dying on the mountain.

Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzig Norgay were the first climbers to definitively reach the summit, with the aid of oxygen, in 1953.

Mr Smythe reached 28,200ft in an expedition in 1933, less than 800ft from the summit, but had to turn back.

He made further attempts on the summit, including the 1936 expedition where he sighted Mallory’s remains, but never matched his record.


George Mallory, pictured in the Alps in 1909

George Mallory, pictured in the Alps in 1909

Mallory pictured here during the First World War, died attempting to scale Everest on an expedition in 1924

Mallory pictured here during the First World War, died attempting to scale Everest on an expedition in 1924

Frank Smythe

Frank Smythe

Secret: Frank Smythe, pictured, wrote a letter explaining the sighting, but asked for it to go no further

Secret: Frank Smythe, pictured, wrote a letter explaining the sighting, but asked for it to go no further


Mobberley Seven (Eight) of the year 2013!!

cruella2From Good Friday through to the final sunny weekends of September and maybe October if the weather holds up, the legendary Mobberley Eight bike rides have become an institution!! The tradition is to cycle (or walk) the 8 pubs of Mobberley where a drink or more is enjoyed in each pub.

In fact the true Mobberley eight no longer exists as the true historic Mobberley pubs are the Bird in Hand, The Church Inn, The Bulls Head, The Roebuck, The Plough and Flail, The Chapel House and the Railway inn.

Cyclists add the Frozen Mop or the Stag but nowhere in the history of Mobberley are these two pubs mentioned mainly because they aren’t in Mobberley!!

Maybe the bike ride should be called the Magnificent Mobberley Seven!!

We have decided to recognise what we feel to be the most magnificent Mobberley ‘seven’ cyclists of 2013 and they are the 101 Dalmatians and Cruella de Vil!!! They are pictured below. Well done to all of them and as far as we are concerned they are the best Mobberley ‘Seven’ riders of 2013 as voted by all our teams at both our Mobberley Pubs!!!!

We will be arranging a cup presentation and each year at the end of the Mobberley Seven season we will recognise the best dressed and best behaved Mobberley Sevens!!


Cyclists Welcome!!



As part of our commitment to cycling for fun and fitness around Mobberley and beyond we have built our second ‘pub cycle park’ with the entrepreneurial help, once again, of Rick and Paul of Caddis.

The Church Inn cycle park has been built to the rear of the pub right next to the gated entrance to the Wisteria Beer Garden.

Our first cycle park was built at the Bulls Head just down the road in Mobberley this time last year and was erected in honour of the 2012 Olympic Cycling team, some of whom are regulars at the Bulls Head. Cycling is a great pastime and there is no better place than Cheshire to get out and feel the breeze.

In time we will be arranging cycling between our pubs in Cheshire so watch out for leaflets in house.

The Great outdoors!!

As temperatures rise and we actually have the summer we deserve (at long last!!) it is important that we let new potential customers know the wonderful outside space we have here at the Church Inn. To the side we have our terrace opposite St Wilfrid’s Church which gets shade as well as sun. When the Church bells ring you could be in a little square in Italy with a cool Aperol Spritz!!#

To the rear of the pub we have our ‘Wisteria Garden’ which is a sun trap and gets the sun late in to the evening, moving down the step from here is the shady beer garden as the path meanders down to our beautiful bowling green. The views from the rear of the pub across the Cheshire fields are breath-taking. Whether you want sun or shade, atmosphere or views the Church Inn has a little of everything.

We do some great yesteryear cool drinks like the Dubonnet Spritzer as well as the now famous Aperol Spritz. Long and cool in the summer sunshine….there’s nothing better!!

Tatton Brewery Boys drink lager!!!

BOYS-WITH-LAGER!Yes it is true…the boys from Tatton Micro-brewery drink lager too!!! The ‘Tatton Two’ as they will be known, rocked up to the new Church Inn having dropped off one of our new house ales which is to be called Ale’Alujah (see badge).

Their curiosity got the better of them and they slipped in to the pub to have a good look around, then low and behold next minute they were caught on camera sipping our new English ‘craft’ lager called ‘Freedom Four’.

Now these are ale enthusiasts at their best but they were on the fizzy stuff for sure!!! When caught in the act they declared it was because it was English and crafted!! Fair enough but we couldn’t resist getting a shot of them, glasses in hand.

We also celebrate the emergence of English craft beers with our Titanic Stout which is a really good 4.5% porter in keg format. The other house cask ale we offer is in honour of Mobberly’ite Climber George Mallory…know as Mallory’s Mobberley Best a lovely 3.9% session ale from Dunham Massey Brewery.

So take a leaf out of the ‘Tatton Two’s Book and come and have a pint!!!

There’s something English for everyone!!




The new Church Inn opens its doors at last!!

slide2Yes after 8 gruelling weeks, the longest of any restoration we have done, the new Church Inn re-opened its doors on Wednesday19th June 2013. The pub is truly restored beyond anything we could have expected and anyone that knew the pub before will appreciate the effort of everyone involved in this re-build job.

After being acquired way back in January, in a near derelict state, by Tim Bird and Mary McLaughlin this Grade II listed pub is now fully restored and refurbished offering great food in an old ‘Country Tavern’ environment. The pub has a main bar with intimate small dining rooms. There is a ‘boot room’ for a ‘muddy boot’ pint of ale and a private dining room upstairs with a smaller ‘chefs library’ dining, or indeed, meeting room, adjacent. There is now a new sunny garden to the rear of the pub, snaking down to one of Cheshire’s oldest bowling greens. The hedges have been reduced to reveal wonderful views across farmer’s fields from the rear with wisteria growing elegantly above. There is a summer dining terrace to the side of the pub which is now enclosed and secluded with lovely views of St. Wilfrid’s Church opposite. WE are truly in the heart of some of Cheshire’s most beautiful countryside.

The Church Inn is a traditional yet stylish 18th Century country pub located on the edge of Mobberley, a short distance from the village cricket club for whom a ‘cricket corner’ of interest has been added to the bar. The pub has been wonderfully restored and its grand history has been truly revived.

In 1715 the pub was actually called the Bulls Head and changed its name to the Wright Arms some years later, mainly because there was a second pub in Mobberley called the Bulls Head already!! Ironically the Church Inn is now the ‘sister pub’ of the award winning Bulls Head! The name was then changed to the Church Inn because of it’s proximately to the village church.

Freshly cooked food is a massive part of the new Church Inn, all prepared by the excellent team of chefs developed through the kitchens of Tim and Mary’s other pubs. Such dishes as Roast corn-fed Chicken with smoked mash, summer vegetables, griddled baby leeks and tarragon gravy or Gressingham Duck Breast, with herb polenta, Winchester cheese and caramelized beetroot or the Cheshire Farmed Lamb Burger with Anglesey Feta and caramelized onion chutney, pickled cucumber salad and chips get the taste buds tingling.

There is a ‘communion’ of wines celebrated within the pub featuring a list of fifty or so wines from ‘old world’ classics to the ‘new world’ innovations with a few unique additions from as far afield as Mexico and Israel.

The Cask ales are from within a 15 mile boundary as well as one pump dedicated to craft ales from around the country, English Stouts and craft lagers differentiate our offering further.

We look forward to welcoming you soon.

Week 8 ‘The Opening’

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