Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Postcards from Cleethorpes

Cleethorpes Victorian Pier
Sunny Clee. On the North East Lincolnshire coast, co-joined with Great Grimsby, Cleethorpes sits on the southern bank of the Humber looking out over one of the countries busiest, most dangerous estuaries. 

The town is a busy vibrant place with lots of nightlife although some wish it hadn't, but that's the way of the world these days and it could certainly do with some investment in its business areas, none-the-less its a nice place and has pleasant parts of the town, particularly in its residential areas.

The tide goes out leaving rippled wet sand and lazy buoys
I just went for a ride out, just half an hour away from home, across the magnificent Humber Bridge where I could see the Jubilee Flotilla (Humber style) adjacent to the southern banks of the Humber with the tug boats pumping gallons of water high in the air in tribute. The air was clear, there were few clouds and the evening was still. The car radio was broadcasting the Jubilee concert on BBC Radio 2 and it was fun and entertaining to listen to. I parked up on the sea front between the Leisure Centre on my right and the Victorian Pier to my left and just took in the atmosphere and the river scene.

The Greenwich Meridian runs through the town which means that Cleethorpes is zero degrees longitude.

Huge ships including one of the European ferries were travelling out to sea on the outgoing tide in the deep channel closer to the north bank of the river and several ships were anchored in the mouth of the estuary, presumably waiting for the next high tide to come in to one of the many docks on the river. 

The Spurn Point lighthouse on the north bank of the Humber was crystal clear.

I don't think they caught much, evening shadows draw the day to a close
A powered hand glider swooped noisily along the shore line doing acrobatics, twisting and turning to entertain the few families and wanderers that sauntered along the promenade. A young couple were fishing just in front of us until the tide went out so far, that all that was left was the rippled wet sand. 

Powered hand glider touring the beach
The two ancient forts that stand alone in the river guarding the Humber were highlighted in the late evening sun which bathed everything in golden light creating shadows and contrasts. 

Built in 1914 as protection for the river and its trade and traffic during the first world war (but ironically not finished until 1919), Bull Sand Fort lies adjacent to the north bank and Haile Sand Fort (slightly smaller) lies just south of Cleethorpes. Now disused, they were once the home of guns and soldiers and were regularly attacked during the two wars.

The name Cleethorpes is probably made up of clee - meaning clay and thorpes meaning village or hamlet. In 1801, the population of the village whose main interest was in fishing not surprisingly,  was just 284. Today, the population of this seaside resort  is over 30,000.

If you come from Cleethorpes, then you are known as a 'Meggie,' but no-one is sure how that name came about which is a shame. There is a rail link to Cleethorpes and an easy motorway and trunk road access to and from the west.

I hope you enjoyed your weekend; here in the UK, it's been a four day long Bank Holiday weekend to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the reign of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth ll. It'll be a shame to go back to work tomorrow albeit for just a three day working week!

Chat soon



  1. your photos make the place look rather classy!

  2. Cheers John
    It's not a bad place at all really

  3. Reading John's comment above I must say that my memories of Cleethorpes are certainly not classy. My friend and I were allowed to spend a week there on year when we were about seventeen. Our parents knew a boarding house landlady called Mrs Cheffins and we stayed with her. We thought we were being very daring and as far as I remember we went on the train from Lincoln (where I lived at the time) and spent most of our time walking up and down the prom in our finery, trying to look glamorous. Happy days!

  4. I've been watching the jubilee on the tv, very good although it seems like it's gone on forever ;)

  5. I've not been to Cleethorpes in a very long while. There used to be a really good fish and chip shop there.

  6. Hi Weaver
    Cleethorpes is working very hard to put right its image I have to say. Thanks for the great memories - I wonder whatever happened to Mrs Cheffins!

    Hi Val
    Yes it did a bit, overall good BBC coverage however I've heard a lot of criticism of the boat flotilla

    Hi MorningAJ
    There are several there and still a couple of very popular ones on the sea front.

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