Tuesday, 20 September 2011


In my Whitby post I mentioned the mineral jet, which is found for sale in many of the town’s shops. Sandsend was one of the places on the North Yorkshire coast where jet was mined. The cliffs at Sandsend Ness to the north of the village also reveal some of the oldest alum workings in the area, dating from 1607. The sandy beach stretches all the way to Whitby, and there are pools for the kids to go crabbing in. There used to be a station here when Sandsend was served by the Loftus to Whitby railway line, but this has now been turned into a private house. The line, however, can be partially followed by walking the Cleveland Way walking trail. There used to be viaducts crossing two streams here, Mickleby Beck and East Row Beck, but all that remains of them now are the foundation pillars. Just outside the village are Mulgrave Woods, where the ruins of the 13th century Mulgrave Castle can be found. Kettleness was another stop along the railway, and the former railway station is now a Scouts’ activity centre. The original village of Kettleness was literally washed away into the sea on the night of 17 December 1829 after torrential rain caused the cliff to subside. The alum works also succumbed to the deluge, but fortunately there was an alum ship called Little Henry just offshore which managed to rescue the villagers. Near the former station is a half-ruined chapel, and in nearby Goldsborough is the site of a Roman military post. Excavations in 1919 revealed the skeletons of three men and a dog, along with Roman coins.

Map of the area.

'Sandsend 15' photo (c) 2011, discoveryorkshirecoast.com - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

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