Ike spent a few days with Heather, exploring North Yorkshire before the second UK lockdown of 2020. Heather & Ike report:
The weather wasn’t as good on this day, but never one to stay home, Ike put his adventurous paws on, and headed off to explore the history of Filey the Fishing town, and Filey Brigg. First he had another go at a Virtual Cache, choosing the one all about Filey’s Fishing Heritage. He went to have a look at a special fountain on the sea front. This fountain shows the position of all the shipping areas around the British Isles. The shipping forecast is obviously vital for those who go to sea. After admiring the fountain, Ike found time to inspect an amazing fisherman statue and got a closer look at the line and reel.
He Ike went to look at Part 2 of the Virtual Cache, about the Coble Landing. This was the hub of the fishing industry where the cobles were launched, using horses in the early days and later using specially adapted tractors. Sadly, there are no cobles here now, due to the decline in fishing stocks in the North Sea. The small boats you can see around you are used for the placing of pots to catch crabs and lobsters. During the summer months you may see boats in the bay dropping longlines to catch sea trout.
Ike then went to look for the third clue for the Virtual Cache. St Oswald’s Church has been here for centuries, as can be seen by looking at the gravestones. As you look around you will see many stones remembering people whose lives were lost at sea, and also others engraved with pictures of fishing cobles representing the deceased’s trade. The most famous tragedy in Filey’s history must be the ‘Research’ disaster of 1925 which sank with all nine crew, eight of whom were Filey men, and five from one family.
After visiting the churchyard, Ike had a walk along the beach toward Filey Brigg, but with the help of his human assistants he realised the tide wasn’t right for walking out to the end of Filey Brigg. Like most cats Ike is very sensible about water, and he realised you MUST check the tide times, and be very careful when you visit beautiful places like this.
ALWAYS check tide times, especially if you aren’t used to being near the coast!
So instead Ike climbed up to the top of the cliff, where you get good views of the coastline in both directions. Once again, his paws were on the Cleveland Way for a small bit of it. He had a read of the information boards, and admired the beautiful rugged coastline.
Ike then watched in awe, as an actual RNLI rescue unfolded in front of his very eyes! He was extremely impressed with the bravery of these men and women, who are all volunteers. As we stood on the cliff top together, in quite strong winds, we watched the lifeboat race out from Filey, and assist a capsized windsurfer, just below us at the side of Filey Brigg! Mark took these photos and Ike said it was the MOST EXCITING thing all day!
After all that excitement, Ike was glad to get out of the wind, and head back into the old part of Filey to find the last 2 clues to complete the Virtual Cache. This area was the centre of Filey until ‘New Filey’ was built in the mid 19th century. Here there was a very tight knit community of people, along with all the shops they would need there were several ale houses and the building that is now the museum at the top of Queen Street was the farm supplying their milk etc. The Council Offices are still in this part of Filey and can be seen from the current location. As you wander down the street you can see further dwellings behind the houses in ‘yards’.
Ike then headed for the final clue to complete the cache. He had to approach this location from Mitford Street. The local name for the unique type of fishing craft is the coble. In the 1880s there were approximately 190 fishing cobles, in 1984 there were 17 working cobles, and today there are none. In the 2000s the coble Margaret was beautifully restored with the aim of using it for a number of historical and educational projects. It languished on the coble landing for a few years as the necessary permissions for its use were not available, and now you can see it is in a very sorry state. Ike was pleased to see the boat Margaret, but sorry it hasn’t been restored. He was happy to complete the Virtual Cache and get his certificate.