This week has seen Nissan’s one millionth car produced from its north-east plant and has seen us enter this area of industrial enterprise.

Alum cliffs

Our first encounter was with the Alum mining and processing area. This was the country’s first commercial industry and stretched from Robin Hood’s Bay in the south, almost up to Saltburn in the north. Parts of the coastline are still recovering from the despoilation but others are now verdant.

Skinningrove Bay

We came upon another coastal industry at Boulby Potash mine and saw more recovery at Skinningrove. The first time we had passed through this village back in 1973 the stream and beach were running orange with the iron workings, but now the salmon have returned and the beach is most attractive. The local community seems to be thriving and we enjoyed a cuppa at the community centre where their local newsletter was being produced. The mining is now remembered  in the mining museum there.

Further up the coast at Saltburn is the first funicular cliff lift (see the
Tales section with Richard and Neville) which was celebrating its
th birthday as we arrived and the Middlesbrough Transporter Bridge is just 100 years old this year with a display about its workings in the Information Centre. Between these two products of a century ago, is the modern industrial heart of Teeside.

Middlesbrough Heavy Industry

It was fascinating to walk through and see automated trucks shuttle into and out of towers steaming with heat and to wonder what on earth they were making!! The Steel Works may have a new lease of life under Indian ownership and the engineering works, chemical works and docks are still there.

The more modern industry of football made us most welcome at the
Riverside stadium.


We were treated to a tour of the grounds, sat in the team’s changing room and looked at the ‘Boro brick road’ with its names of fans and a section for Boro players who had died in the First and Second World Wars. A school party were getting similar treatment enjoying their packed lunches in the stands. Earlier in the week, John, the Everton supporter, ‘sold’ his football soul by being sponsored to wear Liverpool gear (see the Kiwi’s tale). A joke I heard from Steve went like this:-

The Liverpool fan?

“Hi John – didn’t know you were a Liverpool fan”

“I’m not”

“Then why are you wearing a Liverpool shirt?”

(looking down) ” Duh! I’m a Carling fan”

We have seen even more people this week and so ‘hello’ to the 3 from Hartlepool (who remarked on John’s gear),  Judith and Mike who were
parent’s of Jillian and Joanne whom John taught years ago and  Julie
(also  parent of students at St Aidan’s). We walked that day with Stu,
Steve and June,  colleagues from St Aidan’s. ‘Hello’ too to the members
of Westborough church in Scarborough (especially Luke, Michael,
Philip, Matthew and Chloe), Steve, Ged, David, John and Steff from
York, Roger from Whitby, Arthur, Susan, Bob from USA and Trudi from
Switzerland, David and Marjorie, Stephen and Mary, Nick and Marion,
Bob, a lifeguard at Saltburn, Ray whom we met in Redcar, the staff at
O’Grady’s in Redcar, Margaret and Angela at Middlesbrough Football
club, Kevin and his wife at the Transporter Bridge and Andrea and
David from Radio Tees who interviewed us as we walked through the
streets of Middlesbrough. Click on the link to hear the broadcast
first done on Thursday this week and repeated on Sunday.

Week 13   Statistics

Scrabble:  Nancy 2   John 0

Trig Points:  1 (Boulby cliff – highest in eastern England)

Kissing Gates: 10 (mostly south of Whitby)

En route donations  £380.86  (includes £250.05 from
Westborough Methodist Church)

Mileage: 43 miles

Whitby Scampi: 14 pieces

Theakston’s Old Perculier: half a pint


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