Living by the sea...
Saltburn by the sea
August Saltburn Jazz Night with THE SAVANNAH JAZZ BAND
There is never a shortage of fun, excitement and raw good music whenever the Savannah Jazz Band takes the stage. The Savannah is one of the most popular UK bands around. Fri 2nd August Doors and bar 6.30pm
Saltburn Arts presents ANNUAL ART EXHIBITION @ Class 6, The Saltburn School. Sat 3rd August until Sat 10th August 10am – 4pm
Saltburn Arts presents. SALTBURN 150 COMMEMORATIVE FILM. Screenings at 1pm & 3pm Sun 4th August Doors 12.30pm Sun 4th August Doors 2.30pm
A welcome return to the Miranda Wright Singers after last year’s triumphant performance of ‘The Marriage of Figaro’. Presenting Britten’s comic masterpiece of English village life in his centenary year. Wed 14th August Doors and bar 6.45 Curtain up 7.30pm
Saltburn Film Club presents LINCOLN As the Civil War continues to rage, America’s president struggles with continuing carnage on the battlefield and as he fights with many inside his own cabinet on the decision to emancipate the slaves. Cert:12A Starring Acadamey Award Winner Daniel Day Lewis Runtime 150mins. Thurs 22nd August Doors 6.30pm Screening 7pm Saltburn Arts presents BANDFEST
Providing a platform for new and emerging artists, musicians and performers. Sat 24th August Doors 6.30pm Curtain up 7.00pm
Saltburn Arts Presents. SUMMER LITERARY EVENT
A chance to meet a selection of the best local and regional writers around and to hear them read from their works. The line-up will include local author, prize winning crime writer Jennie Finch and Whitbred prize nominee Carol Clewlow. Come along to enjoy a wide range of fiction and non-fiction with a chance to chat and buy signed books. Sun 11th August Doors 1.30pm Curtain Up 2pm
Saltburn Arts presents SEA + AIR
The Miranda Wright Singers present ALBERT HERRING
BEATLEMANIA - 'Due to a change in touring commitments, this show unfortunately has been cancelled.’ Sat 31st August
German duo Daneil and Eleni, performing catchy pop tunes like you have never heard before! Fri 30th August Doors and bar 6.45
Sweeping beaches, cliffs, big skies, surf, seabirds, Saltburn has them all and is our favourite place to be. This month sees the publication of another magazine bringing you some special features which encapsulate, accentuate and celebrate Saltburn by the Sea and the rest of our north eastern coastline as part of the great British seaside – its landscape, its history, its attractions and its community. Hot, hazy days of sunshine have made a trip to the coast a must for most of us in the last few weeks. At times like this there seems to be no better place than sitting on the sands watching children playing in the water while ships sail by on the horizon. The cafés are crowded and the sound of audible chatter fills the air. But it is in the cool of the early morning that I enjoy the beach the most. I like to go for long walks along the shoreline. Not just any walk but epic adventures. On a clear day, trousers rolled up to my knees as the waves crash at my feet, all cares seem to disappear. It doesn't matter about direction, its the unwinding that counts as spirits lift and a sense of joyful optimism prevails. The seaside trades on nostalgia and chips and as I walk along in the sunshine I remember how my own school holidays felt infinite. Weeks of nothing in particular to do except enjoy the sunshine and explore the rock pools. There are not many people about in the early morning, a few fishermen on the pier, occasionally someone shuffles along the beach with a metal detector or a dog runs in the distance chasing a ball. No sign yet of children digging massive holes in the sand or carrying buckets of water filled with pebbles and shells. No parading of fishing nets in the hope of catching a crab or starfish. Just the sound of the sea lapping on the damp sand left by the retreating tide and the scattering of light on the water. This is what the seaside in summer means to me.
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The Saltburn and Cleveland Advertiser
Between the 1870’s and the 1930’s The Saltburn and Cleveland Advertiser was a free monthly publication which prided itself on being the 'Largest, Best, and Cheapest Advertising Medium in Cleveland'. It was published by The Ivanhoe Press, proprietor Joseph Parks, from its office on Windsor Road and circulated 5,000 copies gratis each month, distributed in Saltburn, Marske, New Marske, Guisborough, Brotton and the Skeltons. The following article is the second of a number of articles which were published in monthly episodes throughout 1930.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF SALTBURN BY IVANHOE CHAPTER IV With the exception of the Lifeboat House, the history of which is more closely associated with modern Saltburn, and which will be dealt with later, we have briefly outlined most of the outstanding features of Old Saltburn. Before leaving the subject however, we would like to mention that at one period of its history, Old Saltburn became so notorious for its smuggling activities that it was bombarded in retribution by a revenue cutter. One well-known inhabitant, who lived to be close on a hundred years old, was 'Granny Marshall'. She was known to most of the visitors to Old Saltburn in the past. She died in the old white-washed cottage in which she had resided most of her life, and was buried in Brotton churchyard. Modern Saltburn owes its inception to the family of the Pease's, who succeeded in transforming a barren waste, into what in its time, was the most modern and up-to-date seaside resort on the North-east coast. It possesses features that are lacking in the bulk of watering places, and the surrounding district contains some of the most beautiful and varied scenery as can be found in any part of the vast county of Yorkshire. In the year 1861, through the influence of Henry Pease, Esq., the North Eastern Railway was extended from Redcar to Saltburn. Three years later the railway company built the Zetland Hotel. This hotel, an erection of palatial importance and appearance, in the Italian style of architecture, was
built from the designs of Mr Peachy of Darlington. The foundation stone was laid in 1861, by the Right Honourable the Earl of Zetland. The cost of this building was £30,000. The 'Zet' was in use for six years before the initial entry in the registers of the parish church.
later a separate ecclesiastical district was assigned to it, and in 1870, at the cost of £5,000, the church was enlarged by the addition of the chancel, transepts, South Aisle, and belfry. On the South side of the chancel, built at the same time, was a small but well proportioned chapel for week-day services, etc., but this was used as a vestry until the completion of the tower. The Church has of recent years, been enriched by the addition of an upper east stained glass window which is dedicated to the men of Saltburn who fell in the Great War.
The first religious meetings ever held in Saltburn were held in a waiting room of the railway station, and were attended by members of all denominations. The first meetings of the Church were held in the stables of the Zetland hotel, and it is from this fact that it is assumed to have derived the name Emannuel. In 1863, a temporary church was opened on, we believe, the site now covered by the Parochial Hall. The first vicar was the Rev. Benjamin Irvin, M.A., who conducted the spiritual welfare of the parish for many years. He was succeeded by the Archdeacon Lindsay, Vicar of Scarborough. In the year 1868, the Nave and the North Aisle of the present Church of Emannuel were erected. Five years
( TO BE CONTINUED)
Saltburn by the Sea
An Hotel of Repute
One of Saltburn's most prominent features, The Zetland Hotel, was visualised and planned to be just that. The Stockton and Darlington Railway Company built the Zetland - reputed to be one of the world's first purpose built railway hotels with its own private platform - to a lavish scale in order to attract a wealthy class of customer. The Saltburn Improvement Company was also fully aware that others would view the Railway Company's investment as a show of confidence in the new town and attract further development.
A brief history: A Proposal is made - At a half yearly meeting of the S & D railway company on 2nd February 1861 Thomas Meynall, chairman of the company, reported that there had been an expenditure of ÂŁ12,000 on new lines, particularly on the Saltburn branch. At this same meeting Henry Pease made his proposal for the building of a railway hotel at the Saltburn terminus in order to encourage the development of the new town, commenting on the excellent potential of the site as a holiday resort. Having convinced the directors of the eligibility of this investment a premium was offered for designs for the building. At the same meeting a proposal was made that 'no intoxicating liquor be sold on the proposed premises.' This proposal was not adopted. The design contract was won by William Peachey, a Darlington architect, and tenders for the building, under Peachey's supervision, were invited to be submitted to the S & D railway office in Darlington by the 25th July of that same year. The foundation stone for the hotel was laid by Lord Zetland on 2nd October 1861 and the stable block at the rear of the hotel appears to be the first part of the building to be completed. Lord Zetland returned to perform the Hotel's grand opening ceremony on the 27th July 1863.
In his visitor's handbook of 1863, George Tweddell wrote that the Hotel was built: ... 'in the Italian Style... of firebricks... It is five storeys in height, but there are no windows in the front elevation of the lower storey. The front and sides have spacious terraces, with perforated ballustrades of terra-cotta, surmounted with vases of flowers: and a neat balcony runs along the whole front of the middle storey. A semi-circular tower rises in the centre of the front, which is used as a telescope room, and is provided with another balcony; and both from the top of this tower and the balcony the view is gorgeous. The hotel contains about ninety rooms, comprising about fifty bedrooms, a large dining and coffee room, a ladies coffee and drawing room, reading room, smoking room, billiard room etc'
A second description of the building records: 'The Zetland Hotel occupies a very commanding site fronting the south, and is an erection of palatial proportions and appearance, in the Italian style of architecture, from the designs of Mr Peachey, of Darlington. The foundation stone was laid by the Right Honorable the Earl of Zetland, in the year, 1861. The main front is five storeys in height, and 180 feet long; a broad terrace, approached by two flights of steps, runs along the front and sides, with balustrades which are here and there ornamented with elegant vases, filled with choice and brilliant flowers. A neat cast iron balcony runs round the second storey, from which a capital view is obtained of the surrounding locality. In the centre of the building is a semicircular projection, in the upper portion of which is the telescope room, which forms a splendid observatory, and terminates in a tower rising above the rest of the ediface. The summit of this tower is gained by a staircase and on it is fixed a flagstaff, from which the Union Jack flutters in the breeze.' Samuel Gordon The Watering Places of Cleveland, 1869
Unfortunately, plans and specifications for the Zetland do not seem to have survived and the cost of the building and the fitting out vary from source to source.
As well as the rooms mentioned by Tweddell the Hotel boasted lawn tennis courts facing Dundas Street. Also featured were hot and cold sea and fresh water baths.
The special railway platform was another luxury. After running into Saltburn station the main line continued to within a few yards of the hotel's rear door. This was covered by a roof to shield arrivals from inclement weather.
The hotel proved to be extremely popular and in 1876 magistrates granted an extension of opening hours from 10.00pm to 11.00pm to encourage trade. Alcoholic drinks however, were still not allowed for consumption on the open terraces. In 1882, John Richardson was fined 5/- for drinking a glass of beer outside the hotel. The manager of the hotel, Mr Verini, was also fined 5/- for supplying him.
By the early 1970's confidence and investment in the town's infrastructure and buildings was at an all time low. Some of the larger hotels closed and were eventually converted into flats, others struggled to survive. In 1983/84 the Cleveland Building Preservation Trust were finally able to start on their award winning conversion of the former Zetland Hotel Stable Block into 9 residential units. Eventually the Zetland Hotel also closed and the building was converted into luxury apartments.
From 'Mr Punch at the Seaside'
Evidence Olfactory Angelina (scientific) 'Do you smell the iodine from the sea Edwin? Isn't it refreshing?
Old Salt (overhearing) 'What you smell ain't the sea Miss. It's the town drains as flows out just 'ere'
Funicular Railways (A full article on Saltburn's Cliff Lift can be read in our May 2013 edition).
The idea quickly spread. The famous railway linking Lynton and Lynmouth in Devon - the longest in the country - also uses the water-balance process. Without the funicular the two communities would still be wedged apart, the only link being a steeply
Synonymous with 'cliff railways', as they are usually
twisting road. Southend in Essex and Torquay in
raised and lowered up and down an incline by cable,
Devon have them; Bournemouth in Hampshire has
funicular railways appeared in the new seaside resorts
three; Folkestone in Kent, sadly, retains only one of
in the nineteenth century. The earliest were on the
three, although it has four tracks.
rocky cliffs of Scarborough and Saltburn in Yorkshire. The latter, still working, extended to a pier at the foot of the cliff to make direct connections with pleasure boats. Scarborough's first lift opened at South Cliff in 1875 and runs from the foreshore up 234 feet to the Esplanade. Although many now run on electricity and diesel, such as the West Cliff lift at Hastings in Sussex, Saltburn's still depends on the water balance principle. Both cars incorporate a water tank. Filling the tank of the car at the top makes it descend, pulling the lower one up. The lowered car discharges its load, while water is added at the top to continue the cycle.
Inland, the Shipley Glen Tramway in Yorkshire gives visitors to Saltaire a lift up to the moors above, and Bridgnorth's Castle Hill Tramway in Shropshire has ferried passengers between High and Low Town since 1891. The last of the 'classic era' funicular railways to be built in England was at Fisherman's Walk in Pokesdown, Bournemouth, which is still active. Saltburn's Cliff Lift is the oldest of the 'water balance' type to be still in use, attracting thousands of visitors each year to this seaside resort.
Fairs and Markets The right to hold a fair or market was through long use or by charter sought from the King. Once it was established the freedom to trade at the town fair was given to anyone and everyone, bringing income for the lord of the manor, Church and Crown. In 1110 a charter for an eight-day Easter fair was granted by Henry I to the Abbot of Ramsay for St Ives in Huntingdonshire; since his feast day is 24 April, there may have been a local 'waking' here already. Brough Fair in Westmorland may have been active since Roman times. Whereas markets were frequent and domestic affairs, jealously controlled by powerful guilds for local benefit, fairs were part of the wider calendar. They welcomed non indigenous, often international traders. Scarborough Fair used to last a rumbustious 45 days, drawing French, Spanish, Italian, Baltic, and Mediterranean traders in wines, iron, gold, amber, silk and spices, who would return home with cloth, grain, foods and drinks. Fairs were dominated by trade in animals, with drovers sometimes bringing cattle, sheep, geese, pigs and horses long distances. Local specialisms abounded. Birmingham had its Onion Fair; Great Yarmouth in Norfolk its Herring Fair; Norwich its Rush Fair; Whitstable in Kent its Oyster Fair; Priddy in Somerset the famous Sheep Fair. As industries and cities expanded, the agricultural population became a minority. Feasts, festivals and fairs changed. Animal trading was sometimes lost and pleasure fairs, more like those we know today, began to evolve.
Victorian preoccupations with temperance, modesty and work forced many fairs out of existence. But from the innovations of travelling entertainers, storytellers, trinket sellers, prize fighters, musicians and jugglers, and the introduction of food and game stalls and man powered fairground rides, the fun fairs we enjoy today evolved. With fairs came exotic foods, including pomegranates and coconuts. Biscuits, especially gingerbreads, originally sold as 'fiarings', have their regional variations. In Devon the Widecombe Fair offered gingerbread and spiced ale. In Yorkshire, gingerbread and Wensleydale cheese. Today fairs and markets are made. Saltburn by the Sea has a vibrant Farmers Market. This year sees the introduction of a brand new food festival offering a variety of market stalls offering local food produce, live music and live 'kitchen' demonstrations. Welcome.
Discover some of the hidden jewels Of the North Yorks Moors. This years programme of walks has everything from short family rambles to a challenging 12 mile moorland hike for experienced walkers. Each walk is guided by National Park Rangers, specialist guest leaders or a knowledgeable and dedicated band of volunteers. They will take you to almost every corner of the Park to enjoy a breath of fresh air, to look at wildlife, geology, archaeology, buildings, signs of Spring, beautiful views, in fact almost everything that makes the North York Moors the place it is. Booking is essential
All walks are FREE but donations are welcome as they help us to care for the National Park.
Unless specifically stated dogs are welcome on walks provided they are on a short fixed lead at all times.
Places are limited on all walks and each one operates on a first come first served basis, so booking is essential. To book a place call 01439 772738 What to bring
Please wear appropriate clothing and suitable footwear. Do bring sun protection in hot weather. Please bring plenty to drink and for our longer walks, the individual event details will state whether you need to bring a packed lunch with you.
1 Level 1 Walks are 30 minute walks on easy going terrain for about 1-1.5miles. Total time allowing for stops etc will be about 1hr.
Children are welcome on all walks but MUST accompanied by an adult; some of the walks stipulate a minimum age. A number of walks are accessible by wheelchair and this will be specified in the individual walk details. You can get to many of our walks by Moorsbus or public transport, check out www.northyorkmoors.org.uk/public-transport for more information.
2 Level 2 is slightly more challenging. You will be walking about 2 or 3 miles. These walks could take up to 2 hours including information stops.
3 Level 3 is the highest level and will be up to 5 miles. These walks are much more challenging and you will need to be reasonably fit; they could take up to 3 hours for the total walk including information stops.
Sunday 4 August
Sunday 4 August
Explore a 12th century planned village
Appleton and more
Join Jim Hall on a gentle morning stroll around the village of Appleton le Moors, looking at its development from the 12th century to Victorian times. There is also a 15minute illustrated presentation of the History Group Archive, with a further chance to study the archive over a hot drink after the walk.
Return with us to the village of Appleton le Moors for a longer 3.25 mile afternoon walk, which also ventures into the countryside looking at Open Field Enclosures and Common Land still managed by an ancient Court Leet. There's a further chance to see the History Group Archive over a hot drink after the walk.
Start time 10:45am Finish 12:00noon Appleton le Moors Village Hall (OS Grid Ref. SE735877)
Start time 1:00pm. Finish 3:00pm Appleton le Moors Village Hall (OS Grid Ref. SE735877)
Wed 7 august A thoughtful husband and unfaithful wife
Wed 7 August Sheep wash - cod beck reservoir
Walk leader Chris Bush takes you on a surfaced farm road known as the Old Wife's Way which, legend says, was built by a giant. It's a 2 mile walk, there and back along the same route and offers good views of Blakey Topping and the forest beyond.
On this picturesque walk, Mike Nicholson leads you through woodland, over moorland and alongside the very atmospheric Cod Beck Reservoir.
Accessible by wheelchair.
Sheep wash National Trust car park(OS Grid Ref. SE468992)
Start 10:00am Finish 12:00non
Start 10:30am Finish 11:30am Saltersgate car park on A169 (OS Grid Ref. SE85239390
wed 7 August
Sunday 1 September
A gorge-ous walk
Cropton - 'the hill top settlement'
Chris Bush will take you 4 miles across open access heather moorland and along the edge of a vast gorge where steam trains pass far below. Your return is via an ancient dyke and packhorse route. Sorry no dogs allowed. Start 2;00pm Finish 4:30pm Saltersgate car park on A169 (OS Grid Ref. (SE85239390)
Cropton, meaning 'hill top settlement', is a quiet village on the edge of the moorland. This 1.5mile walk led by Peter Turton looks at the site of a medieval castle and at some interesting buildings in the village. Start 11:00am Finish 12:30pm Old Reading Room (Village Hall), Cropton High Street.
REALLY GET TO KNOW THE NORTH YORK MOORS Join a National Park Ranger or one of our specially chosen experts on one of our walks.
Sunday 18 August
Sunday 18 August
Tuesday 17 September
Discover Danby and Fryup Dale
Across the Sea of Heather
Over the Hills and Far Away
Experienced walkers won't want to miss our challenging 12 mile route around Danby and Fryup Dale, led by a National Park Ranger. It passes through some remote locations, including Ainthorpe Rigg, Glaisdale Moor, and Great and Little Fryup Dale, with stunning views and picturesque moorland en-route. You'll need to be prepared for some steep ascents and descents, and participants should be used to doing walks of this length and difficulty.
With the heather in full bloom, there's no better time for a stunning 3.5mile walk over Levisham Moor with National Park Ranger David Smith. Hear how the National Park's Levisham Estate is managed and find out about the British Falconers' Club's essential moorland management work.
Join our National Park Rangers for a 6 mile circular walk across farmland and moorland, taking in some of the northern dales and moors and enjoying some of the best views in the area. It's an easygoing route, suitable for all the family.
Packed Lunch needed. Start 10:00am Finish 4:00pm Moors National Park Centre, Danby
Packed lunch needed. Start 10:00am
Packed lunch needed. Sorry no dogs.
Danby Moors National Park Centre
Finish 3:00pm Saltergate car park, on A169 (OS Grid Ref. (SE85239390)
easy access walks
SALTBURN VALLEY GARDENS This is a moderate walk on good tracks, but with gradients up to 1:15. The Saltburn Valley Gardens are a maze of pleasant paths and tracks with seats at frequent intervals. Refreshments, a Woodland Centre, children’s play areas and a miniature railway can all be enjoyed – all set in a mix of formal gardens and ‘wild’ woodland. The walk is likely to be suitable for people with impaired mobility or with a pushchair, wheelchair or mobility scooter. The walk can be done without steps or stiles, though alternative stepped sections are also described. The path condition will vary depending on the weather.
Points of Interest
This circular walk is approximately 2 miles in length (3.2km).
There is a tea room in the Valley Gardens. All facilities are available in Saltburn.
In days gone by these thick, wild woodlands would have provided an ideal haven for smuggled goods arriving off the Saltburn coast; indeed, it is said that a tunnel still links The Ship Inn with the inland valley.
Path details Firm limestone tracks and tarmac pavements with moderate gradients. Start Park at the junction of Victoria Road, Marske Mill Lane and The Ridge. (OS Explorer Map 306 Grid Ref 662204) Route Join the Cleveland Way just below The Ridge and follow it to the coast. Return up the valley. There are various alternative routes, all leading in a similar direction.
How to get there From the centre of Saltburn take the coast road towards Whitby. At the main junction turn right along Balmoral Terrace. Follow the road parallel to the edge of the valley and after 1 mile at the T junction turn left along Marske Mill Lane to the junction with Victoria Road. This walk could be done in reverse order.
Victorian Saltburn developed from one man’s dream. Whilst walking along the coast, Henry Pease had a vision of tall splendid buildings rising from the clifftop. He established the Saltburn Improvement Company and advertised for designs for the town. Plots were allocated for villas for wealthy visitors, hotels for the middle classes and areas for cheap boarding houses for the workers. There were doctors, reading rooms, a convalescent home, water, drains, gas and roads but no premises selling alcohol. It was at this time that the Valley Gardens became the more formal delight they are today.
SALTBURN VALLEY GARDENS 1:17 P 50m 1 Take the track downhill between ‘Victoria Road’ and ‘The Ridge’.
Walk alongside the miniature railway and turn right over the footbridge.
1:15 15m Join the Cleveland Way and bear left down a short, steep slope. 2
1:20 25m Slope and steps or bear right for slope only. 14
Head for the refreshments!
Avoid the path to the right, continue ahead on the gently undulating track.
Double back through the formal garden.
1:20 4 120m Avoid the path to the left, continue down the main track.
Bear left. 1:20 120m Rejoin the outward route to return to the start. 18
1:20 5 320m Follow the track uphill to the left.
Slope or steps Up. Continue ahead on the path or turn left up 16 Steps to the road.
Follow the path past the bandstand and continue down the road to the seafront rejoining at point 11 OR,
14 12 15
2 16 3
Opposite Dundas East Street, turn right down the steps by the bus stop.
Pass the Spa Hotel and turn right down the (60) steps to join the road.
Turn right immediately before the river bridge. 12
Continue past the playground and over the footbridge.
SALTBURN VALLEY GARDENS KEY Tarmac road or path Compact hard surface, occasional stones or gravel
Compact earth/short grass
Worn grass 11
Ruts, stones or long grass Rough surface Continuation of National Trail
All route photographs are taken in the direction of travel, unless otherwise stated.
This map is reproduced from Ordnance Survey digital map data. ÂŠ Crown copyright 2010. All right reserved. Unauthorised reproduction infringes Crown copyright and may lead to prosecution of civil proceedings.
North York Moors National Park Authority
Licence No. 1000221930 ÂŠ North York Moors National Park 2010
1 3 2
A brief glimpse of the past... Staithes Staithes was established in the mid 15th Century as a landing place for a settlement known as Seaton Garth a little further inland. By the 16th Century it had developed a reputation as a shellfishing village. By the early 1800s Staithes was the largest east coast fishing port north of the Wash. Boat building, especially the traditional cobles and five-man boats, also took place in the shelter of the beck and many workshops once lined its banks. Decline of both the fishing and the boat building industry at Staithes came with the coming of steam trawlers following the fish down from Scotland and the eventual collapse of the herring stocks. Today a small number of line-caught fish and lobsters and crabs are brought ashore by local fishermen. The coming of the Victorian railway brought new visitors to Staithes in the form of tourists and, more notably, artists who were drawn to the village by its picturesque views, its characterful people and its quaint customs. For 30 years from 1880 a collection of artists known as the Staithes Group lived and worked in and around the village and played their part in revolutionising the British art scene. Dame Laura Knight is one of the best known members of the group visitng and then living in Staithes between 1897 - 1908. Between 1745-1746, Staithes's most famous resident, James Cook (born in Marton near Middlesbrough), worked in Staithes as a grocer's apprentice where he first gained his passion for the sea.
50 Spades of Clay...
Growing your own fruit and vegetables.
August August is usually a hot and sultry month. Growth slows down and weeds germinate less. It is a great time to enjoy summer vegetables - sweet young cabbages, cauliflowers, turnips, carrots, peas, beetroot and globe artichokes. As the silks go dark brown on sweet corn prepare yourself for a delicious treat. To double check their ripeness, peel back the outer husk on one and dig a finger nail into a kernel. When perfectly ripe it will produce a milky substance. If it is not quite ready it will be watery. If it is over ripe it will be doughy. Harvest onions when the foliage collapses and let them dry in the sun. Pick cucumbers before they go yellow and aubergines and peppers while still shiny. Finish summer pruning apples, pears and other trained fruit trees. Keep them well watered and mulched. Summer fruiting raspberries will be
finishing now. All the canes that have born fruit this year will be spent and should be cut down. The new young canes will profit from the resulting increase of light and air. Tie in the best of these for next year's fruit. Sow parsley and spring cabbages in a seed bed and cover with insect netting. It will protect the parsley against the devastations of carrot root fly and the cabbage (always a popular target) against flea beetle, pigeons and particularly cabbage white butterfly. In August the second generation is on the rampage and will voraciously feed until autumn. Get in a last sowing of salad crops outside - lettuce, spring onions and radish. You might be able to squeeze in a last crop of peas. Choose quick growers like 'Douce Provence' or 'Meteor'. If you have any peas left from spring sowings you might like to try to save seed for next year.
Towards the end of the month sow spinach for autumn and next spring. Good cultivars for autumn eating are 'Scenic' and 'Toscane' - breakthrough cultivars with unprecedented resistance to mildew. Sow fast growing Japanese onions like 'Swift' or 'Early' and overwintering salad onions. 'White Lisbon Winter Hardy' and 'Ramrod' are good bets. Sow a few seeds every couple of weeks as getting the timing right is a bit of a gamble. You want them to be large enough to survive the frosts but not so large that they panic and bolt as soon as the weather turns cold. Lift chives, split them by pulling the roots apart and pot them on. Chop the foliage back and grow them in a cool spot. When the weather turns they will be ready to come in on the kitchen window sill. Other herbs that respond well to this treatment are mint and lemon balm.
❯ Sow now... Salad leaves*, Swiss chard, Perpetual spinach, Radish* (including winter types), Lettuce*, Coriander*, Chinese leaves, Chicory, Endive, Kohlrabi, Peas, Spinach*, Turnips, (*Avoid sowing when it's really hot) ❯ Plant now... Broccoli, Winter cabbages, Winter cauliflowers, Kale, Brussels sprouts (early in month), Leeks ❯ Harvest now... Globe artichokes, Tomatoes, Broad beans, French beans, Runner beans, Beetroot, Peppers, Carrots, Cauliflowers, Cabbages, Cucumber, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Courgette, Marrow, Peas, Potatoes, Radish, Spinach, Turnips, Redcurrants, Whitecurrants, Blackcurrants, Gooseberries, Late/perpetual strawberries, Summer fruiting raspberries
Sow: Plant sets 4ins apart in late March, sow seeds 2ins apart in April. Thin to 4ins apart. Soil: Grow in ground manured for previous crop. Add an organic fertiliser when planting. Sun: Full sun or part shade. Grow: Hates competition from weeds, so hoe the crop well, and water in dry periods.
Harvest: When the leaves start to flop over to one side, the onions are reaching maturity. Do not force the leaves over – this only encourages rotting. Leave to ripen in the sun for week or so, then gently lift before storing. Problems: Onion white rot, a furry white mould, can devastate the crop if the soil is too damp. Do not grow any alliums in an affected bed for eight years. Onion fly is attracted by the scent of the foliage – grow among carrots or strongly-scented herbs and sow crop thinly – thinning crushes the foliage and releases the scent.
Backdraft Things you might have missed...
Breaking news, events and happenings you might have missed last month.
Skelton Beck is teeming with life again thanks to a restocking exercise by the Environment Agency which took place on Monday 15th July. 27,000 trout were released as part of a plan to restock the river after thousands died last year.The Beck, which runs through Saltburn down to the sea, suffered major stock losses when the river was contaminated by pig slurry that filtered into the watercourse.
A Fishy Tale
great feeling to see the fish released into the watercourse after stocks were hit last year.
Thousands of fish have been released to bring new life back to Skelton beck which was caught up in a pollution scare last year.
It was part of a restocking programme which should eventually see 27,000 fish released into the Skelton Beck catchment at 12 locations.
Trout, minnows and salmon were among hundreds of fish found dead in the beck, which runs between Guisborough and Saltburn, after the water became polluted.
The juvenile trout will spend the next year or so in the river before going out to feed off the coast. It will be at least two years before they return to the river for spawning.
An investigation was launched by the Environment Agency after the incident, believed to have been caused by pig slurry, affected a five-mile stretch of the beck.
The fish were raised at the Environment Agency’s Kielder hatchery, with the help of the River Esk Fishing Association.
On Monday 15th July fish were released into the beck where the A174 crosses it in Apple Orchard Wood, in what was described as “perfect trout conditions”.
The association donated brood stock to the hatchery and the adult fish were returned to the River Esk, along with 20,000 juveniles, to boost stocks there.
Paul Freer, fisheries and recreation technical officer at the Environment Agency, said: “The restocking exercise went very well today. It’s a
No action has yet been taken after last year’s pollution but the EA continues to investigate the incident.
Local Notes... Salmon, Trout and Smolts in Cleveland. Newcastle Courant July 12 1844 The district of Cleveland, in the North Riding of Yorkshire, is bounded to the north by the sea, westward by the Tees, and eastward by the Esk river, and presents generally a bold, rocky sealine and a succession of promontories, such a Kettleness, Boulby, Huntcliffe, &c. In this district exists the celebrated aluminous schistus and alum-works, and here are found in enormous abundance the remains of a former world; vast masses of fossils of various kinds, ammonites innumerable and saurian remains of singular form and gigantic size. The alum shale thus projecting on the sea coast extends quite into the interior of the district, as may be seen at Guisborough, and still further to the south and west. Now in this tract of country we are met with but one class of streams which require my notice here; I mean streams which have their sources, and embonature in this district, the waters of which, from this cause, and from their generally diminutive size, admit of a full, complete, and searching investigation; an investigation of a character totally different from what can ever be attempted with any hopes of success in the broad and deep Tay, the limpit Tweed, or even the comparatively shallow and unimportant streams of the Nith or Annan, the Whitwarter or the Downe. The streams we speak of arise, and have their whole course within the district. With the exception of the Esk, rising at Esklitts, and joining the sea at Whitby, they are generally called 'becks,' in Scotland 'burns' or 'waters.' Of these becks, nine, arising from a long ridge of high ground, shutting in Eskdale on the north, join the sea directly, after a course of six or seven miles. The Esk may be considered the tenth of this description (but much larger) as draining Westdale, Commondale and Eskdale. Of these streams, burns, becks or waters, the first I examined was Holebec, at Saltburn, arising from three sources near the Roseberry Ridge and Wiley-Cat, which, after a course of seven or eight miles, joins the sea about eight miles to the east of Teesmouth. This 'Salt-burn' is almost a rivulet, easily commanded by a net of ordinary dimensions. Sea or salmon-trout varying from 3-4, 6-7 and 10-12 lbs,* frequent it in considerable numbers ascending about two miles, where a formidable mill-dam arrests their further progress into the higher streams. In the lower part of the beck, salmon-trout abound, depositing the roe at the usual time viz., the commencement of winter, and as a natural consequence, in May there appear in the streams from the mill-dam downwards to the sea, great numbers of smolts (improperly called by the country-people and fishermen smelts,) rarely, if ever, less or more than five or six inches, which make their way to the sea with the parent fish, which at this time (May 21), abound in the stream, lank, long, thin and narrow, but not unhealthy, nor unwholesome, although quite unfit for the table, spanned fish, in fact, or kelts, male and female, in nearly equal proportions; but no real salmon have ever been
taken in the sea on both sides of it in bag and stake-nets, which intercept the true salmon on their way to the mouth of the Tees. No smolts or fry have ever been taken, within the memory of the oldest fisherman, above the dam head (previously mentioned) except on one occasion, when four or five pair of salmon-trout caught early in October, were put above the dam head by Mr M S Milton, Mr J W Ord (formerly old pupils of mine), and Mr Jos. Biggins, gamekeeper to the late Robert Chaloner Esq. in the ensuing spring and summer, the anglers of the valley, unaware of what had been done during the previous year, were agreeably surprised to find the beautiful silvery smolt leaping to the fly, and they were taken even higher than Gisborough, in streams or pools never previously nor since frequented by them. The Rev H Clarke, and M Mackareth Esq., surgeon of Gisborough, caught these smolts as I have stated, and this fact is still further corroborated by Mr Wetherill, a solicitor of the town, Mr J W Ord, Mr J Biggins and T Frank.
Desirous of knowing the contents of the beck at Saltburn
between the dam head and the sea I availed myself of the opportunity of the netting, annually made by the gatekeeper, Thomas Frank, for supplying Mr Wharton's pond at Skelton Castle. The 'beck' was carefully swept with a net sufficiently close in the mesh to take the smallest minnow, stickleback and 'Jenny Dab,' and the following was the result. May 21 1844. Of the salmon trout, all spawned fish, evidently on their way to the sea, upwards of a dozen were seen, or taken, and would have weighed, had they been in condition, from four and five to six and seven pounds, resembling exceedingly the same description of trout caught in the Tay of Scotland. In the net were also taken numbers of smolts or salmon-trout fry, which, however, were not found in such great numbers as during the previous drought, many having got to the sea during the rains of the 18th and 19th of May. One of my friends, indeed, assured me that about. ten days previously the stream was thronged with them, and that the ports near the sea seemed actually alive with the immense number of smolts. Such was also the fact during previous years. These smolts averaged (as we have observed) five and six inches. Besides these were caught about an hundred common trout, of two kinds, viz., the simply red-spotted trout, and that sort, which, for want of a more appropriate name, we may term the parrtrout, marked with dusky spots, and is to be found in all the streams throughout the district, being far more abundant, and of infinitely better flavour and quality, above than below the damhead. It ought further to be mentioned, that none of the trout which we caught exceeded, and few surpasse, seven inches;
whereas above the dam-head, and even so high as Gisborough, common trout of a pinky colour have been frequently caught by the anglers, weighing one, two and two and a-half pounds. The further history of this stream and of its finny inhabitants, is curious enough, in respect to its being at total and irreconcilable variance with all the fashionable Scottish theories, by whatever name they may be christened, Annandale, Hogg, Shaw, Wilson, Drumlanrig, and all the rest of them! The first singular fact is the total abscence of Brandling or Parr, such a fish being totally unknown to the gamekeepers, fishermen, and anglers, not only of this, but the adjoining salmon-trout, and salmon streams at Skinningrave, Staithes and the Esk. All the oldest and most practiced anglers of the district, united, without any reservation whatever, in this testimony, are ready to append their names to the fact. Nor, if parr had existed in this stream, or smolt of a smaller size than those we caught, could they by any possibility have escaped the fine net which was now used, and which had been similarly employed by the same keeper for upwards of 20 years, without his vigilant eye having observed any other description of fish than those mentioned, including minnow, small flounders, eel and sticklebacks; secondly, the keepers assured us that they never found the fry, or smolt, of any other size, shape or appearance, at the different periods of netting, it exactly the same as we saw them now, adding, that if any other fish existed, living or dead, they must, from the peculiar nature of the stream, have found them, and dragged them out of their nets. Thirdly, if detained in the beck by dry weather, which greatly diminishes the channel over the long sandy beach, by which it passes to the sea, they had known these smolts grow to about three quarters of a pound in weight. Fourthly, the smolts now taken were intended to be placed in the fresh-water pool belonging to J T Wharton Esq., in which they throne very well for a year or two and were then killed for the table; which pond is supplied solely and entirely by such fish as are caught in nets by the keeper in Saltburn beck. Such supply is kept up as occasion requires, and the smolts then grow and thrive in this pond, formerly the most of the ancient castle of Robert de Brus, and nearly circular, til they attain the weight of from one to two pounds, after which they become lanky, thin and large-headed, and then languish and die. These fish, when required for the use of the Castle, are caught with the artificial fly, and
obtain their only food from the natural resources of the pond or reservoir, which is about forty feet broad, and three hundred feet long, being fed by two very small runners which pass through fine iron gates. The outlet of the water is through another iron gate at the northern extremity of the pond, and the water then falls down a steep, perpendicular precipice, of sixty feet and upwards, built of stonework, and afterwards runs for some distance through an artificial subterraneous channel, so as to be concealed from the sight. And lastly, the keeper who accompanied me in this enquiry, (four in number), and two other gentlemen besides, both of them practical and scientific anglers, and one of them born and brought up within a stones throw of the stream, unite in affirming that the smolts caught in May, are the young of the salmon spawned during the preceding winter; and that they never, during the clearest water, in angling, or in netting, saw, or caught, or heard of any other kind of smolt, in form, appearance, colour or size, than those which were now caught in the net, proving incontestibly, the rashness and annoyance of the present Scottish theory, that these smolts are the second years growth of the salmon spawn. Such then is the result of the present enquiries - enquiries, however, which I propose following along the coast, and which will enable me to present my Scottish neighbours with some further "nuts to crack." - From ' A Day at Saltburn' by Robert Knox M.D. * the largest pair, male and female, ever caught, were taken by the gamekeeper, Mr Thomas Frank, and were above 14lbs. each.
MUCKY MOUTH PIE Bilberries are a delicious fruit found growing wild in the north and west of the British Isles especially on moorland or on high ground. The season for them is very short between August and September. The raw fruits are a little acidic but when cooked with sugar become a delicious, deep-flavoured fruit perfect for pies and for jams. Bilberry Pie is a classic British pie loved throughout the North of England particularly in Yorkshire. Serve it warm with thick cream or a good vanilla ice-cream - delicious. This particular recipe has been made by the catering team at the National Trust’s Penrhyn Castle Tea Rooms in North Wales where it has been one of the most popular items on their menu. It comes from the National Trust’s own collection of Victorian recipes and takes its name from the children’s habit of collecting bilberries and shoving handfuls of them into their mouths – with predictable results. As bilberries grow wild and are not always readily available you can substitute them with blueberries.
Ingredients and method:
Rich Sweet Shortcrust Pastry: 225g (8 oz) plain flour, 1 large pinch of salt, 115g (4 oz) butter, 55g (2 oz) caster sugar, 1 egg yolk, 2 tablespoons very cold water.
Whiz the flour, salt and butter to breadcrumbs in the food processor, add the egg yolk and water, whiz again until the mixture just comes together. Wrap in clingfilm and leave in the fridge for 30 minutes. Roll the pastry out between two sheets of clingfilm, and use to line the loose-based pie tin. Prick the base all over with a fork and brush the pastry base with beaten egg. Place on a pre-heated baking tray in a preheated oven (180°C/350°F/Gas 4) and cook the pie base for 25 minutes.
Turn the heat up to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5.
Filling ingredients: 2 large granny smith apples (or dessert apples), peeled, cored and thinly sliced. 225g (8 oz) caster sugar (I would reduce this to 170g/6 oz). Juice of half a lemon 675g (1½lb) bilberries (or blueberries) 115g (4 oz) icing sugar
Place the apple slices in a bowl and sprinkle with half the sugar and the lemon juice. Toss to mix and leave for 20 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, place the apple slices in the pre-baked pastry case. Mix the mint (if using), with the bilberries and then put them on top of the apple slices. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar and juices from the apples. Place a pie raiser or an upturned eggcup in the centre of the tart.
Roll out the remaining pastry for the lid and place over the filling, sealing the edges. Make a slit in the centre of the pastry lid. Bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes or until the apple slices are soft. Remove from the oven and allow the tart to rest and cool. Do not remove the pie from the tin until cool otherwise it will crumble.
Place the icing sugar in a bowl and slowly add a few teaspoons of very hot water, mixing until you have the right consistency, drizzle over the pastry crust in no particular pattern.
Serve warm or at room temperature. Enjoy!! Recipe from ‘The Book of Old Tarts’, Elizabeth Hodder
Join us on our reading project. Month by month we will present part of a short story from R Austin Freeman's 'Dr John Thorndyke's Cases', a collection of short stories of detective fiction first published in 1909. Richard Austin Freeman (11 April 1862 London – 28 September 1943 Gravesend) — known as R. Austin Freeman — was a British writer of detective stories, mostly featuring the medico-legal forensic investigator Dr. Thorndyke. He claimed to have invented the inverted detective story (a crime fiction in which the commission of the crime is described at the beginning, usually including the identity of the perpetrator, with the story then describing the detective's attempt to solve the mystery). Freeman used some of his early experiences as a colonial surgeon in his novels. A large proportion of the Dr. Thorndyke stories involve genuine, but often quite arcane, points of scientific knowledge, from areas such as tropical medicine, metallurgy and toxicology. JOHN THORNDYKE'S CASES (1909) (a.k.a. Dr. Thorndyke's Cases) ORIGINAL PREFACE TO 'JOHN THORNDYKE'S CASES' THE MAN WITH THE NAILED SHOES - Part 5 in this (August 2013) issue.. THE STRANGER'S LATCHKEY THE ANTHROPOLOGIST AT LARGE THE BLUE SEQUIN THE MOABITE CIPHER THE MANDARIN'S PEARL THE ALUMINIUM DAGGER A MESSAGE FROM THE DEEP SEA Preface...
The stories in this collection, inasmuch as they constitute a somewhat new departure in this class of literature, require a few words of introduction. The primary function of all fiction is to furnish entertainment to the reader, and this fact has not been lost sight of. But the interest of so-called 'detective' fiction is, I believe, greatly enhanced by a careful adherence to the probable, and a strict avoidance of physical impossibilities; and, in accordance with this belief, I have been scrupulous in confining myself to authentic facts and practicable methods. The stories have, for the most part, a medico-legal motive, and the methods of solution described in them are similar to those employed in actual practice by medical jurists. The stories illustrate, in fact, the application to the detection of crime of the ordinary methods of scientific research. I may add that the experiments described have in all cases been performed by me, and that the micro-photographs are, of course, from the actual specimens. R. A. F. Gravesend, September 21, 1909.
On the following morning, which was fair and sunny after the stormy night, Dr. Burrows called for my friend. He was on his way to the extemporized mortuary to make the postmortem examination of the murdered man's body. Thorndyke, having notified the coroner that he was watching the case on behalf of the accused, had been authorized to be present at the autopsy; but the authorization did not include me, and, as Dr. Burrows did not issue any invitation, I was not able to be present. I met them, however, as they were returning, and it seemed to me that Dr. Burrows appeared a little huffy.
"Your friend," said he, in a rather injured tone, "is really the most outrageous stickler for forms and ceremonies that I have ever met."
Thorndyke looked at him with an amused twinkle, and chuckled indulgently.
"Here was a body," Dr. Burrows continued irritably, "found under circumstances clearly indicative of murder, and bearing a knife-wound that nearly divided the arch of the aorta; in spite of which, I assure you that Dr. Thorndyke insisted on weighing the body, and examining every organ--lungs, liver, stomach, and brain--yes, actually the brain!--as if there had been no clue whatever to the cause of death. And then, as a climax, he insisted on sending the contents of the stomach in a jar, sealed with our respective seals, in charge of a special messenger, to Professor Copland, for analysis and report. I thought he was going to demand an examination for the tubercle bacillus, but he didn't; which," concluded Dr. Burrows, suddenly becoming sourly facetious, "was an oversight, for, after all, the fellow may have died of consumption."
Thorndyke chuckled again, and I murmured that the precautions appeared to have been somewhat excessive.
"Not at all," was the smiling response. "You are losing sight of our function. We are the expert and impartial umpires, and it is our business to ascertain, with scientific accuracy, the cause of death. The prima facie appearances in this case suggest that the deceased was murdered by Draper, and that is the hypothesis advanced. But that is no concern of ours. It is not our function to confirm an hypothesis suggested by outside circumstances, but rather, on the contrary, to make certain that no other explanation is possible. And that is my invariable practice. No matter how glaringly obvious the appearances may be, I refuse to take anything for granted."
Dr. Burrows received this statement with a grunt of dissent, but the arrival of his dogcart put a stop to further discussion.
Thorndyke was not subpoenaed for the inquest. Dr. Burrows and the sergeant having been present immediately after the finding of the body, his evidence was not considered necessary, and, moreover, he was known to be watching the case in the interests of the accused. Like myself, therefore, he was present as a spectator, but as a highly interested one, for he took very complete shorthand notes of the whole of the evidence and the coroner's comments.
I shall not describe the proceedings in detail. The jury, having been taken to view the body, trooped into the room on tiptoe, looking pale and awe-stricken, and took their seats; and thereafter, from time to time, directed glances of furtive curiosity at Draper as he stood, pallid and haggard, confronting the court, with a burly rural constable on either side.
The medical evidence was taken first. Dr. Burrows, having been sworn, began, with sarcastic emphasis, to describe the condition of the lungs and liver, until he was interrupted by the coroner.
"Is all this necessary?" the latter inquired. "I mean, is it material to the subject of the inquiry?"
"I should say not," replied Dr. Burrows. "It appears to me to be quite irrelevant, but Dr. Thorndyke, who is watching the case for the defence, thought it necessary."
"I think," said the coroner, "you had better give us only the facts that are material. The jury want you to tell them what you consider to have been the cause of death. They don't want a lecture on pathology."
"The cause of death," said Dr. Burrows, "was a penetrating wound of the chest, apparently inflicted with a large knife. The weapon entered between the second and third ribs on the left side close to the sternum or breast-bone. It wounded the left lung, and partially divided both the pulmonary artery and the aorta--the two principal arteries of the body."
"Was this injury alone sufficient to cause death?" the coroner asked.
"Yes," was the reply; "and death from injury to these great vessels would be practically instantaneous."
"Could the injury have been self-inflicted?"
"So far as the position and nature of the wound are concerned," replied the witness, "self-infliction would be quite possible. But since death would follow in a few seconds at the most, the weapon would be found either in the wound, or grasped in the hand, or, at least, quite close to the body. But in this case no weapon was found at all, and the wound must therefore certainly have been homicidal."
"Did you see the body before it was moved?"
"Yes. It was lying on its back, with the arms extended and the legs nearly straight; and the sand in the neighbourhood of the body was trampled as if a furious struggle had taken place."
"Did you notice anything remarkable about the footprints in the sand?"
"I did," replied Dr. Burrows. "They were the footprints of two persons only. One of these was evidently the deceased, whose footmarks could be easily identified by the circular rubber heels. The other footprints were those of a person--apparently a man--who wore shoes, or boots, the soles of which were studded with nails; and these nails were arranged in a very peculiar and unusual manner, for those on the soles formed a lozenge or diamond shape, and those on the heel were set out in the form of a cross."
"Have you ever seen shoes or boots with the nails arranged in this manner?"
"Yes. I have seen a pair of shoes which I am informed belong to the accused; the nails in them are arranged as I have described."
"Would you say that the footprints of which you have spoken were made by those shoes?"
"No; I could not say that. I can only say that, to the best of my belief, the pattern on the shoes is similar to that in the footprints."
This was the sum of Dr. Burrows' evidence, and to all of it Thorndyke listened with an immovable countenance, though with the closest attention. Equally attentive was the accused man, though not equally impassive; indeed, so great was his agitation that presently one of the constables asked permission to get him a chair.
The next witness was Arthur Jezzard. He testified that he had viewed the body, and identified it as that of Charles Hearn; that he had been acquainted with deceased for some years, but knew practically nothing of his affairs. At the time of his death deceased was lodging in the village.
"Why did he leave the yacht?" the coroner inquired. "Was there any kind of disagreement!"
"Not in the least," replied Jezzard. "He grew tired of the confinement of the yacht, and came to live ashore for a change. But we were the best of friends, and he intended to come with us when we sailed."
"When did you see him last?"
"On the night before the body was found--that is, last Monday. He had been dining on the yacht, and we put him ashore about midnight. He said as we were rowing him ashore that he intended to walk home along the sands us the tide was out. He went up the stone steps by the watch-house, and turned at the top to wish us good-night. That was the last time I saw him alive."
"Do you know anything of the relations between the accused and the deceased?" the coroner asked.
"Very little," replied Jezzard. "Mr. Draper was introduced to us by the deceased about a month ago. I believe they had been acquainted some years, and they appeared to be on excellent terms. There was no indication of any quarrel or disagreement between them."
"What time did the accused leave the yacht on the night of the murder?"
"About ten o'clock. He said that he wanted to get home early, as his housekeeper was away and he did not like the house to be left with no one in it."
This was the whole of Jezzard's evidence, and was confirmed by that of Leach and Pitford. Then, when the fisherman had deposed to the discovery of the body, the sergeant was called, and stepped forward, grasping a carpet-bag, and looking as uncomfortable as if he had been the accused instead of a witness. He described the circumstances under which he saw the body, giving the exact time and place with official precision.
"You have heard Dr. Burrows' description of the footprints?" the coroner inquired.
"Yes. There were two sets. One set were evidently made by deceased. They showed that he entered St. Bridget's Bay from the direction of Port Marston. He had been walking along the shore just about high-water mark, sometimes above and sometimes below. Where he had walked below high-water mark the footprints had of course been washed away by the sea."
"How far back did you trace the footprints of deceased?"
"About two-thirds of the way to Sundersley Gap. Then they disappeared below highwater mark. Later in the evening I walked from the Gap into Port Marston, but could not find any further traces of deceased. He must have walked between the tide-marks all the way from Port Marston to beyond Sundersley. When these footprints entered St. Bridget's Bay they became mixed up with the footprints of another man, and the shore was trampled for a space of a dozen yards as if a furious struggle had taken place. The strange man's tracks came down from the Shepherd's Path, and went up it again; but, owing to the hardness of the ground from the dry weather, the tracks disappeared a short distance up the path, and I could not find them again."
"What were these strange footprints like?" inquired the coroner.
"They were very peculiar," replied the sergeant. "They were made by shoes armed with smallish hob-nails, which were arranged in a diamond-shaped pattern on the holes and in a cross on the heels. I measured the footprints carefully, and made a drawing of each foot at the time." Here the sergeant produced a long notebook of funereal aspect, and, having opened it at a marked place, handed it to the coroner, who examined it attentively, and then passed it on to the jury. From the jury it was presently transferred to
Thorndyke, and, looking over his shoulder, I saw a very workmanlike sketch of a pair of footprints with the principal dimensions inserted.
Thorndyke surveyed the drawing critically, jotted down a few brief notes, and returned the sergeant's notebook to the coroner, who, as he took it, turned once more to the officer.
"Have you any clue, sergeant, to the person who made these footprints?" he asked.
By way of reply the sergeant opened his carpet-bag, and, extracting therefrom a pair of smart but stoutly made shoes, laid them on the table.
"Those shoes," he said, "are the property of the accused; he was wearing them when I arrested him. They appear to correspond exactly to the footprints of the murderer. The measurements are the same, and the nails with which they are studded are arranged in a similar pattern."
[Illustration: The Sergeant's Sketch. Extreme length, 11 and three-quarter inches. Width at A, 4 and a half inches. Length of heel, 3 and one quarter inches Width of heel at cross, 3 inches.]
"Would you swear that the footprints were made with these shoes?" asked the coroner. "No, sir, I would not," was the decided answer. "I would only swear to the similarity of size and pattern."
to be continued...
Les TrĂ¨s Riches Heures
Published on Aug 1, 2013
Sea Breezes, bringing you news, events and features which celebrate Saltburn by the Sea and its environs as part of the great British seasid...