|First sight off the bus!|
|The Bathing Belle - celebrating Scarborough as the first sea-bathing resort!|
Scarborough seems a place, like many in Britain, that grows and fades with the latest occupation / industry / cultural trend. Its documented history goes back as far as about 370 when the Romans built a signalling station there. The Danes founded the town sometime in the 900's but then died off with the invasion of the Norwegians in 1066. The castle was built in 1136 and part of it still stands.
Fishing, town markets, religious orders of monks*, spa waters, sea bathing, wool and coal export, shipbuilding and the famous annual medieval town fair all aided the growth of Scarborough. Foreign invasions, the Great Plague, Henry the VIII's reformation of the Catholic church, development of gun power, the decline of industries and social fashions and world wars all contributed to its decline. [Going back to those religious orders, I just learned that the colours they wore signified their order - seems obvious now - black: Dominican; white: Carmelite; grey: Franciscan.]
Many people seemed a bit surprised that we would chose Scarborough as a destination, which sort of tells where it currently stands. However, as usual I found much to please my eye, not least because it was a beautiful sunny day. I could see some of the more prosperous history in the grand architecture.
The worst we saw on the day was the tattier bits of seaside amusement park and related: shops selling souvenirs, fish and chips, cotton candy, etc. (Not forgetting pubs, of course). I'll not be sharing much of that here. It was a beautiful sunny day and almost everything looked pretty good!
The castle stood tall on the cliff - taller than I cared to climb. I've seen a ruin or two in the twenty years I've lived here, so was content with distant photographs.
|Luna Park! They got everywhere!|
There were a few surprises, but I'm keeping those for another post...or two.