Old Men that would be loath to have their credyt crackt by a tale of a stale date, report confidently that sixty yeares since, or perhaps 80 or more, a sea-man was taken by the fishers of that place, where duringe many weeks they kepte in an oulde House, giving him rawe fishe to eate, for all other fare he refused; insteade of voyce he shreaked, and shewed himself courteous to such as flocked farre and neare to visit him; – fayre maydes were wellcomest guests to his harbour, whome he woulde beholde with a very earneste countenaynce, as if his phlegmaticke breathe had been touched with a sparke of love. – One day, when the good demeanour of this new gueste had made his hosts secure of his abode with them, he prively stoale out of doores, and ere he coulde be overtaken recovered the Sea, whereinto he plounged himself; – yet as one that woulde not unmannerly depart without taking his leave, from the mydle upwardes he raysed his shoulders often above the waves, and making signs of acknowledgeing his good entertainment to such as beheld him on the shore, as they interpreted yt; – after a pretty while he dived downe and appeared no more.
Rev. John Graves quoting William Camden
The History of Cleveland. 1808
Cat Nab – Penny Hole – Cranedale – Stone Ridge – Huntcliff Foot – Bird Flight Goit – Seal Goit – Old Tom Foot Way – Jackdaw Crag – Blue Nook – Clay Shot – Cattersty
harvesting the meandering molluscs
clusters of proto-dolmen litter the wave-cut platform
A war-era concrete cist tumbled and upturned. The ice sheet long gone, boulder clay maintains its ten thousand year momentum
The Mortuary house was built to store bodies that had been washed up by the sea, prior to this bodies were stored in the nearby pub. The building was sandwiched between the Lifeboat house and the Rocket Brigade house, both of which have been demolished.
The people of the Bronze Age buried their dead on Warsett Hill.
Walking the field margins dreaming of axe blades and scrapers. The cliff top fields are littered with the remnants of Teesside’s second Iron Age.
The cliff edge creeps ever closer, the sea will eventually take the railway, just as it took the Roman signal station that was once on the edge of Huntcliff.
The Guibal fan house was built to ventilate the cliff top ironstone mine.
Sea coal is a rare bounty on Saltburn beach, generally only found after large storms and spring tides. The coal originates from offshore seams and has been gathered from North East beaches since at least the 7th century.
I was taught to use sea coal sparingly as it burns with great heat and can damage a fireplace. It is best used to cover a fire at the end of a night where it forms a crust which retains the heat of the fire until the following morning. I was also taught that a fire should not be extinguished but allowed to go out naturally.
Walking out of Hazelgrove into low autumnal sunshine and clear blue skies. There will probably be a frost tonight. Saltburn faces north, this is unusual for a coastal town.
A small flock of Pigeons live beneath the pier. The yearling Kittiwakes prefer to congregate close to the fish and chip shop. Crows scavenge the strand line.
Cat Nab was once home to wild cats, a Bronze Age burial was discovered on its slopes. Victorian authors often described Huntcliff as majestic.
The sea wall is in part made of the stone sleepers from the world’s first passenger railway. Another part of the sea wall is an anti-tank wall built during World War II