The Winter of 1962

I was born in 1962 mum said was difficult to keep little ones warm .You always had to be well wrapped up.

I once read a true story about the winter of 1962/63, and here it is.

High up in the Yorkshire dales , a farmer’s wife had given birth to her fourth child ,It had been a difficult birth and she was not well in the first few weeks of  the Childs birth , this was the winter of 1962/63 , The farm was a sheep farm with one cow for the families milk requirements .

With snow drifts up to 20tf deep, things were getting bad with the remote position of the farm, and no neighbours close by .The farmer’s wife, s milk dried up, not having milk powder for her baby, she didn’t know what to do? With the constant worry of tuberculosis from the cattle and the baby being so young, it was a worrying time.


The family’s Border collie had just had pups two weeks earlier, Peg was the family pet as well as a working sheep dog, and had grown up with all the other three children. The farmer’s wife looked at her in her quiet warm place by the range, suckling her pups.

The farmer’s wife knew the answer, she cleaned the bitchs teats and put her crying baby up to peg, who looked a little puzzled, but happily accepted the baby.

This is a very unusual story, but the baby thrived and mum improved too, forever after there was a special bond between, Peg and baby.

They were finally dug out after 8 weeks; food had been dropped in by helicopter.

It just shows the trust in the dog of the farmer’s wife, and the dogs whelping intuition coupled with the dog’s good nature that saved, the day and the child.

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Castle Howard in the Winter

We took a couple of days off this  winter and decided to make it a stay cation taking in some of the sights we don’t get to see due to working ,one of which was to visit Castle Howard ,it was only £ 6.00 to roam all around the grounds which sounded a lovely idea ,beautiful crisp morning after a sharp frost everything was sprinkinled with fine ice dust ,we certainly saw it in a new light , First notice  we saw said that they were having a beetle infestation in the turf and not to stand on it , the beetle burrows down into the turf to hibernate for the winter and in the spring small grubs hatch out just under the turf top ,the interesting thing was that crows dined out on these in the early morning light thus helping eradicate the beetle hmm interesting we thought .

Next we walked over the great lawn to the fountains which had just been cleaned out and five giant hoses were right over the lawn filling one of them up ,then onto the temple of the four winds which was circled by many mole hills ,on closer inspection as we moved closer all these had ancient mole traps sticking out of them ,we felt like intervening to save our beautiful black velvet coated friends ,but dare not interfere ,on the edge of the veranda were at least 60 owl pellets  with a pile of excrement ,we thought of the natural food chain mole owl etc and thought  awful but fascinating too ,then we walked through the wood and down to the lake which was frozen solid with an eerie mist over the centre where a hole had developed and snow white swans were swimming in this ,it was truly a different perspective of the great house and very interesting too lots of snow drops and yellow anemones we can highly recommend an off season trip topped off of course with our favourite tea and scones at the cafe  bliss.

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Festive Frumenty

Festive Frumenty On Christmas Eve in Filey long ago a sort of festive porridge was taken, door to door, as a greeting to friends. Made in their home, all families would have had their own recipe. This recipe is from the old recipe collection of Miss Rosamund (Rose) Stockdale, and goes as follows:
‘’Simmer a pan of kibbled wheat in water for 12 hours, then add a nut of butter, some cinnamon, nutmeg or spice, currants and sugar to taste. Serve hot, with cream and rum.’’
(If Kibbled wheat cannot be found use cracked bulgur wheat.)

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This is the time when many of us will be dusting down our party gear and getting booked in for work doo’s and Christmas party’s of all kinds.

A chance to let our hair down and relax a little .this has always been the case, in times gone by people would go to a Hotel or Village Hall for a Party or Ball.

Here is such a party held for Filey Golf Club Members  at the Royal Cresant Hotel in the fifties , Don’t they all look lovely , Eddie and Enid Cammish are on this one , Kindly donated by Pat Danby as with this gathering at the corner cafe  was too do you recognize anyone ? Pat says the gentleman stood up she thought, Managed the Filey Laundry.

In the parish magazine of 1901 there were many festivities to welcome the new century among

Them was a fancy Dress Ball at the Victoria Hall in Murray Street, This took place to make funds for the Infant School heating fund.

This was a huge Parish Event making £46.7s towards the fund.

The Victoria Hall burnt down in 1918 this was a much used community facility .After this many things then took place at the Grand Hall (Buccaneer) on Union Street which opened in 1911

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The New Sea Wall

The new sea wall, opened July 21st 1955

A Mr Hall visited Filey Ladies Monday club, in 1990 approx. he gave a most interesting talk on the making of the new sea wall and Royal Parade.

In 1955 Mr. Hall worked for Dews of Oldham who were the contractors for the new sea wall , he came from Bradford , and the work was carried out by Fairbank& son .

Filey Council passed the plans; the rumour was that it was not felt necessary for Filey to have this money after the great storm of 1953, as there was hardly any damage as such.

A compound was made on West Avenue car park , it was such a set up  that in its year of service 25,000 concrete blocks were made for the sea wall , also the mass  of concrete  for infill behind it .The cement was taken to the sea front  by wartime lorries top speed  30 miles  an hour , there route was  via West Avenue down southdene  then  Crescent hill . Liquid concrete was mixed at the compound and taken in metal skips to the seafront, then taken off by cranes and dropped into tanks at the bottom of the foundations; these acted rather like a preformed and were moved along each day as the concrete set. Most of the labour was local but mainly from Scarborough, the only Filey men that worked at the compound were Mr. Boynton and Mr. Cowling, men at the compound had nothing to do with the men on the beach.

Work started on a Bank holiday which made the firm really popular, but it drew many folk to sights ee, it was a very rough time weather wise, Two other projects were also happening that year the big sewer was put along the side of the brig, but these contractors were not too good, they lost seven sets of machinery to the sea, Mr Fairbank lost nothing. They had a great big steam driven pile driver that was parked, on the now, paddling pool, which locals hated this was driven by a man that believed to have sailed trawlers all over the world, but all he could get this thing to do was billow thick black smoke all over Filey, much to Fileys disgust.


A celebration was held to commemorate the wall at The Royal Crescent Hotel,

The night before the celebration Mr Hall was called out to strengthen the underneath where the deckchairs were kept because Mr. Fairbank of Fairbank & Son thought it would collapse and injure lots of people, so he had a hard night and got up late for the celebrations.

The old barriers are still in place under the sand they were not taken up and the edge of them can be seen at a very low tide

On completion The Princess Royal came to open the new foreshore, and attended the celebration tea, the silver for this was brought up from London; the tea took place at the Royal   crescent Hotel.


There is a commemorative plaque to mark this, event set in the wall. Here is a photo taken on the day by Mr Eddie Cammish

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gloomy day today ,well what better reason to get out to Filey have coffe and cake at one of the best cafes in town and take a look at our new winter range of mountain equipment down and tecnical fleeces

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The Great Storm of 1953

 On the 31st of January in 1953 there was a great storm in Filey; this was caused by an unusually low pressure coinciding with a very high tide.

This created a low pressure system, tracked south with the tidal surge producing a storm surge.

These pictures taken at the time, by Eddie Cammish, show that Filey was considerably damaged.Storm3

The royal parade barriers were severely damaged, with all their stone filling being washed away from behind them during the storm,

In 1955 these were replaced by the new sea wall with paddling pool as you see it today.Storm1

The cobble landing didn’t escape damage either with “Bonzo, s” shed nearly demolished by the gales as we see here this this picture also by Eddie, the end of the cobble landing was partially washed away too.


Bad storms such as these remind us of the power of the elements and what damage can occur, when they are unleashed, we are very lucky to come out of this unscathed.

We need to pray and feel for all the people in the world who are not so lucky in these instances.

In the week starting 3rd dec 2013 ,another such storm surge travelled down the north east coast , much worse that the storm of 1953 .Scarborough was very badly hit with part of the north bay sea wall being washed away , and very deep flood waters on sand side .

Fileys first sea wall took a battering too, as shown in the picture below, friends who live at flat cliffs primrose valley told us that the sea water was only a foot beneath the cliff line .The power of the storm surge moved some large concrete blocks right down the beach.

The destruction was not as bad as it could have been due to the more reinforced sea defences, in place now.


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