Yorkshire East Coast Tour – Sandsend

18 05 2019

March 2019
We actually visited Sandsend twice out of the three days we did on the Yorkshire Coast/North York Moors. That’s because, on the first day we visited, it was shut!

Photos a mix of my film and Richard’s digi-camera(marked)

What do I mean it was shut? Well, my enduring memory of Sandsend was that of going on the same walk a few times with my mother and my brother through a woods to visit an old ruined castle and also an even older ‘motte’. So, my primary aim in visiting Sandsend was to take Richard on the same walk to see the interesting antiquities. We rolled up at the start of the walk to find it had been turned into an ‘estate entrance’ and there was a sign saying they were closed that day so there was no access into the wood!

Partly to confirm that we weren’t allowed in today, and partly because I wanted to see what was said about all the other paths into the wood which didn’t go through the official entrance, I called at the estate shop and took the lady in there to task. What did they mean it was ‘shut’? She said it was only open Wednesday and Saturday. I pointed out we’d driven quite a way to visit but she was adamant we couldn’t go in (even though it was just an open gateway).

I then asked her what about all the other routes into the wood? She admitted there were many (we used to go in via one and come out via another) but said the wood was officially closed so we shouldn’t go in there. I was a bit tempted to ignore her and just use another entrance but, luckily, we’d seen another walk from the carpark where we’d just paid a couple of quid to park. This was along the cliffs. In the end, we decided just to do that.


Sandsend Beach and the cliffs


Richard’s digi photo

We were soon very pleased I hadn’t driven off in a huff as, apart from the fact we’d waste the parking fee, we actually enjoyed the clifftop walk very much! You basically follow the steps up the cliff out of the carpark and it takes you up onto an old railway line.

The railway line is exceedingly pleasant walking and, for the first mile or so, hugs the clifftops.


Richard’s photos – lovely gorse below


I got him to take a photo of these lovely primroses too

Back to my photos for a while…

One of the cliffs seemed to be an eroded slag heap or suchlike – it was bare and grey and looked like slag anyway – it had eroded into a superb sculpted shape and I was very taken with it…

One of the cliffs had an audacious peak on it which I not only had to photograph but also had to scrabble up – you didn’t want to fall down the sea side of it!

There was then an interesting chasm which went down to the sea – there was a set of steps to take you down to the beach here too (my photo again)

We then rounded the corner to see a railway tunnel – unfortunately, it had been blocked off so that they wouldn’t get sued if it fell down on someone. Shame as I like to go through railway tunnels! (Richard’s photos)

The walking path continued very steeply up to the right of the tunnel up almost vertical wooden steps. We continued up and walked another mile or so of cliffs and then turned inland to try to find a path to take us back to the middle section of the railway line but we never found it. In the end, we turned back and reversed the route – no hardship when it was such great scenery.

When we arrived back at the carpark, the tide had gone out and Richard got a lovely photo of the swirly patterns left in the sand by the tides…

We then set off to pay yet more parking fees in another village… The next day, we were out that way again and I suggested we go back to Sandsend as it was now a Wednesday so they’d be open. I really wanted to show Richard the old ruined castle and the motte.

The walk through the ‘official entrance’ and through the woods to Mulgrave Castle is around 2.5 miles each way – allow 2 hours anyway… We unfortunately left the map in the car so I was unable to re-find the ancient castle or ‘motte’ (Foss Castle) which was a bit of a disappointment 😦

The woodland was very pleasant but I was busy with trying to remember whether we had to branch off to find the castle or not – I thought it was off to the right after a couple of miles. Consequently, I didn’t take any photos until I’d found it! I was right and the castle was where I thought it would be anyway…

I got Richard to take a photo of the information board with his digi-camera (I find that kind of thing a waste of a film shot) – I’ll put it out here but not sure whether it will be readable or not. In case it isn’t, the Wiki page for the castle and old motte is here

I then proceeded to snap away with my film camera as we toured the castle…


An old oven with a family plaque in it

We spent twenty minutes or so along the same ridge looking for the motte but didn’t find anything – had we brought the map, we’d have seen we needed to cross the beck down on our right to the next ridge!

We decided to walk back the same way through the woods as we were short of parking time.

Sandsend was definitely my favourite place on the East Yorkshire Coast just because of the quality of the walking there and the general interest. It is also a lovely beach but we didn’t get chance to get onto it at all (I’d have loved a paddle as it was lovely warm weather). The parking fees do need looking at in this whole area as it’s just too expensive to keep paying in every single carpark in every place! East Yorkshire council take note!

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21 responses

25 05 2019
underswansea

Wonderful post! Beautiful area and interesting history. Thanks for sharing your trip. I would like to see this kind of rugged coast and historic ruins with my own eyes someday.

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25 05 2019
mountaincoward

well bring lots of parking meter money!

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27 05 2019
underswansea

Ha ha!

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19 05 2019
Blue Sky Scotland

That looks a cracking stretch of coastline. Had the same problem in Cornwall years ago, either shut, or rerouted, or tide was in leaving no beach but only found that out after paying car park entry.

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19 05 2019
mountaincoward

Yeah – it would be helpful at Sandsend if they put whether the ‘estates’ are open on the carpark sign before you pay! At least is has that nice cliffs walk though

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18 05 2019
Alli Templeton

Great castle! The information board is perfectly readable, and what a great idea to post it so we can learn a bit about it too. And beautiful, crystal-clear photos of the coastline – sounds like an area we need to explore! Glad it all worked out well for you in the end. But I do have to ask the same as you doubtless thought – how can a woods be closed?

I really enjoyed this walk, Carol, with the lovely scenery, and the castle, of course! 🙂

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19 05 2019
mountaincoward

I had to wonder about whether you can really close a whole wood – especially with so many paths into it. I’m sure the locals just go in anyway – I would! The estate who own the woods seem to own most of the village and the next one from what we could see.

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19 05 2019
Alli Templeton

I’m sure you’re right, the locals probably do go in anyway – I would too! Lucky landowners owning a woodland with a castle in it. What a dream… 😊

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19 05 2019
mountaincoward

and a couple of villages

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19 05 2019
Alli Templeton

That’d be nice too…😊

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18 05 2019
tessapark1969

Nice bit ot coastline there. I liked the little castle too.

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19 05 2019
mountaincoward

the castle walk is really nice and, if you remember your map, you’ll be able to find the really ancient motte. You’ll also be able to see the other routes out of the wood so you don’t have to do the same route twice.

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18 05 2019
chrissiedixie

You’ve made me think that a North York Moors trip is long overdue…

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19 05 2019
mountaincoward

we really enjoyed it – not sure what you can do about all those parking charges though?!

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18 05 2019
John Bainbridge

dramatic bit of coast thee.

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18 05 2019
mountaincoward

we really enjoyed our trip – it was just the excessive parking charges which spoiled it all

Liked by 1 person

19 05 2019
John Bainbridge

We use our National Trust membership to park free in their car parks. It pays for itself when we walk where they own lots of land – like the Lakes.

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19 05 2019
mountaincoward

I’ve thought about joining when I retire

Liked by 1 person

19 05 2019
John Bainbridge

They started a reduced sub for me when I hit 60.

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19 05 2019
mountaincoward

I wonder if that’s what I saw rather than having to be retired?

Liked by 1 person

20 05 2019
John Bainbridge

No, you don’t have to be retired, just past 60 I think.

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