Tuesday, June 21, 2011

W is for WRECKS

There are many many ship WRECKS around Flamborough Head. In the 1800s there were at least 72 mapped and there's been a good number more since then.

Flamborough Head is on the east coast of Yorkshire where I grew up.  It was populated before even the Vikings showed up, but the Vikings had much to do with forming the culture of the village and the people. My banner photograph shows what the North Sea can be like at the North Landing, Flamborough  --  in the summer! Needless to say the sea floor around the headland is littered with wrecked ships, the most famous of which is the the Bonhomme Richard . This is  the ship sailed by John Paul Jones, who, although he won the Battle of Flamborough Head, lost his ship and  had to sail  the enemy's ship, The Serapis,  up the coast to safety. There are, or were American divers on expedition looking for this WRECK.  I don't think they will tell anyone if and when they find it until it is safely secured from other divers.  So I don't know if this wreck has been found yet, for sure.


These old post cards and photographs are from my collection of old photos of Flamborough.  A couple of them are from the very early 1900's.



Note the date:  1903


Notice the great number of birds in the cards above.  It is said that before the lighthouse was built in the 1800's sailors would listen for the seagulls to tell how close they were to the headland and being wrecked on the rocks.  It is a Royal Heritage site today with many, many birds nesting and frequenting the cliffs, including gannets and puffins.





This one says "After the Storm" and shows parts of a boat or boats washed up on the shore at the North Landing.


This photo would have to be dated in the 1930's or 40's. The cliffs here are about 300-400 feet high.  



I think this was the Rosa which was wrecked at the North Landing.  The great boiler from this ship was still there on the rocks when we moved to Flamborough in 1946.  It was too big for me to scramble up on at ten years of age, but quite accessible for others at low tide.

YOU CANNOT IMAGINE HOW PRIVILEGED I FEEL TO HAVE HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO SPEND MOST OF MY YOUTH IN THIS WILD AND WONDERFUL AREA.

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The letter W is brought to you by courtesy of Mrs. Nesbitt's ABC Wednesday.  If you would like to see more Weird and whacky W's  please click HERE

22 comments:

Dartford Warbler said...

What an interesting collection of old pictures and postcards of Flamborough Head. I only have memories of visits on summer days, and even then the sea was fierce and boiling around the bottom of the cliffs. The sound of seabirds was everywhere.

Roger Owen Green said...

ah, the perils of the sea. great photos.
ROG, ABC Wednesday team

Jane and Chris said...

The coastline of Britain has some fantastic tales to tell, doesn't it!
Jane x

photowannabe said...

Wow, you certainly lived in a wild ocean area.
I love old postcards and yours are real treasures.
Perfect choices for the letter w.

Beverley Baird said...

The postcards sure do tell a story of the wildness of that area! Great post for the week!

Tumblewords: said...

What a wonderful collection of art pieces. Great style and lovely imagery.

Jama said...

You have such an interesting collections of postcards, they are so full of history.

Rinkly Rimes said...

You certainly live in a Wild and Woolly area! I Wonder about the Xmas card with the picture of a Wreck on it, though!

claude said...

Excemment post, Chris !
Very interesting vintage post cards.
Your backyard is very beautiful.
A lot of colors.

AutumnLeaves said...

Such a gorgeous place, Chris! I'd love to visit this spot someday. I suspect I could sit on the cliff and just watch the ocean for hours.

Martha said...

My father loved the sea and ships. I can't help but think of him when I look at your pictures.

You are blessed to have spent your childhood in such a place of wonder, and it is wonderful that you know it.

Carver said...

What a wonderful wild area to grow up in. It looks so beautiful. Very interesting post. Wrecks are a sad reminder of the perils of the sea but I do so love the roaring waves and a rocky coastline.

MorningAJ said...

It might be my imagination but I think that top one only shows the old lighthouse. (I might have got the direction wrong though)

Great old photos.

kaybee said...

That's an amazing collection of postcards you have there, Chris!

There is nothing like Flamborough Head on a day bearing gale force winds - as long as you're not in a boat, that is!

Wanda said...

What a wild and wonderful childhood, Chris. I think you have memories for fantastic children's books, if you haven't alreay written them.

The post cards, oh my goodness what a feeling they give you. I amost shutter at the wrecks.

Will see The Lion King in Las Vegas tonight to celebrate our 50th Anniversary.

ChrisJ said...

Mornin AJ: I think it's just the angle of the photo, AJ. The old lighthouse would have been there though because it was built in the 1600's, but we are told that it was never used. There is a slight shadow to the right of the lighthouse and that may be it. Sometimes the the 'new lighthouse looks too far inland, but that's because of the little coves at the end of the headland. It is actually built close to the edge of one of the coves -- Silex Bay, also known as Selwicks Bay.

I hasten to add that Flamborough does have some wonderful summer days with less rain than many parts of Yorkshire.

Autumn Leaves: That's exactly what I used to do, accompanied by my dog, Rip.

snafu said...

Interesting postcards, but I wonder why they would show such bad weather when postcards are usually sold for holiday memories or messages home, surely sunshine and calm weather would have sold better.
I remember being forbidden from climbing on some metal wreckage in North Landing, I found it facinating but was always prevented from raching it.

chubskulit said...

Might be frightening when that event was happening.

Would love you to peek at my ABC. You are welcome to come by anytime, have a nice day!

Morning's Minion said...

The old postcards are a treasure.
My sense of England's geography is very sketchy in spite of a lifetime of reading English history and fiction. I think the scenes of James Herriot's Yorkshire are stuck in my mind and I forget that there is a coastline.
I'm way behind in commenting on blogs, but have wanted to tell you that your post for the letter "T" prompted me to find The TALE of Robin Lyth at Alibris. I now have the book in my 'soon to be read' pile and look forward to it.

claude said...

Hello Chris !
Thank you for your compliments.
When I write about my Chéri I try to write well.
Today you can watch what is happen in my palm TREE !
You know, a day, when I lived alone with my both sons, a gipsy women told me in looking at in my palm HAND !!! that I should meet a kind guy. She was completely right !

robnz said...

Hi Chris
A great website with amazing old postcards. Only in Yorkshire would Christmas Greetings be put on a picture of a sailing ship about to be wrecked on Flamborough Head!

Lee Norgate said...

Hi, the ship shown in th pic at the bottom of the cliff is an Italian Cargo Steamship called the Radium which ran aground at New Roll Up in 1923, near the current RSPB centre. All the crew were rescued using a breeches buoy by the local Rocket Brigade. The ships cats (x2) were rescued before the Captain. :) The boilers are still visible at low tide.