This issue includes the fascinating story of Anne Brontë’s connection with Scarborough by Claire Mason. Anne was introduced to Scarborough by the Robinson family when she was governess to their children. Between 1840 and 1844, Anne spent around five weeks each summer at the coastal town and fell in love with the place. A number of locations in Scarborough were the setting for Agnes Grey’s final scenes and for Linden-Car village in The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. In Claire’s article she takes us back in time when Anne visited Scarborough and visits all the places that would have been familiar to her. Sadly in 1848 Anne caught consumption (tuberculosis), she returned to Scarborough for a change of air, but died on Monday 28th May 1849 and was buried in St. Mary’s Church yard.
Next Julia Oldham takes us on a visit to North Landing at Flamborough Head. She describes this beautiful coast line and what it has to offer visitors. Julia also recounts days when cobles were used at North Landing by fishermen to catch crabs and fish. Nowadays these colourful boats have diesel engines and usually half a dozen can be seen moored up on the beach. They are also used by fishermen to take visitors around the North Landing headlands to view the many caves used by smugglers. This is another aspect of North Landing that Julia points out in her article. Some of the favourite goods were tea, brandy, silk and cotton, smuggled by using a coffin at night from their ships, moored not far from the cove.
Diana Parsons recounts the friendship of Phyllis Bentley, a highly successful novelist, with the well-known writers Marie Hartley and Ella Pontefract in her revealing article ‘Dear Miss Bentley’. Their long lasting friendship was not without problems as Diana explains. After the death of Ella, Marie formed a literary partnership with Joan Ingilby. Over the years Joan had the unenviable role of mediator between Marie and Phyllis, who both had feisty temperaments and firm opinions, although their friendship only came to an end with the death of Phyllis in June 1977.
Jean Griffiths then visits Spofforth Castle near Harrogate, which she discovered was not crowded with visitors being a lesser known castle. In fact Spofforth Castle is a fortified manor house. Jean highlights its history and the Percy family who were gave Spofforth by William the Conqueror, then Percy built a manor house for his family. During the English Civil War (1642-1651), Spofforth Castle was vandalised by Parliamentarian troops which finally reduced it to ruins. Jean then takes us on a tour of the ruined castle and points out that the most distinguishing feature of the castle is an octagonal tower, which Turner sketched in 1797.
For our last feature Jeremy Clark takes us on a journey along the Gypsey Race, which is a meandering stream, steeped in legend and tradition. It carves its way through the Yorkshire Wolds, before it reaches the North Sea at Bridlington. Jeremy explains the most important prehistoric sites that are associated with the stream as he follows its course. The Gypsey Race also runs past many other interesting places and sites including the Rudston Roman Villa, deserted medieval villages and last of all, a meteorite, all of which are detailed by Jeremy in his fascinating article.
But there is much more to these articles, please read and enjoy them. We welcome your comments, it is really important to us to know what readers enjoy most – and least. The Yorkshire Journal is completely free, and we intend it to stay that way. But (there is always a but), this means that we have no advertising budget to promote the journal, and have to rely on web links from related sites, Google searches and personal recommendation to find new readers. Consequently only a very small number of people know about us, and it is frustrating that many people would enjoy the journal – if they only knew about it!So we would really appreciate your help to widen our circulation. The most important thing is to tell your friends and relatives about us, if you only convince one person to download an issue of the journal it would be much appreciated. If you belong to a local history society ask them to add a link to our website – we will gladly reciprocate the link. If you use Facebook then please click the “Like us on Facebook” link at the bottom of this page, or write a short post about us on your Facebook timeline. However you do it please help us to become better known.
Actually there are two buts. We have one or two authors who regularly write articles for us, and a few who occasionally do so. We badly need to increase the number of authors. People like you who are passionate about Yorkshire. Almost everyone knows something interesting about their locality which would be of interest to others so please do consider making a contribution. Or perhaps you know someone who you could persuade to write something for us. More details in our Contributions page.
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To download this issue please click The Yorkshire Journal Autumn 2015