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The Ancient Parish of KIRKLEATHAM

[Transcribed information mainly from the early 1820s]

"KIRKLEATHAM, a parish in the wapentake and liberty of Langbargh; 4½ miles NNW. of Guisborough, situate near the mouth of the Tees. The Church is a vicarage, dedicated to St. Cuthbert (see Churches for photograph), in the deanry of Cleveland. Population, 686." (There is further information for Kirkleatham).

"EAST COATHAM, (and West Coatham) in the parish of Kirkleatham, wapentake and liberty of Langbargh; 2 miles N. of Kirkleatham. The delightful scenery, and extensive prospects, with which this place is surrounded, conspire to attract the admiration of all who visit and contemplate its beauties.Few people now resort to it for the purpose of bathing, in consequence of its being a greater distance from the sea than Redcar. It has, however, one Inn for the reception of Company, some Lodging-houses, and two Bathing-machines. The air is remarkably salubrious, the sands extensive and peculiarly fine. There is here a small free school, conducted on the Madras system, for the education of 50 poor children, twelve of the number have annually given them a suit of clothes each."

"PARK HOUSE, a farm house in the township and parish of Kirkleatham; 1¼ miles SSE. of Kirkleatham."

"REDCAR, in the parishes of Marske by the sea and Kirkleatham, wapentake and liberty of Langbargh; 2½ miles WNW. of Marske by the Sea, 7 miles N. of Guisborough. Formerly, this was only a small fishing village, composed principally of huts, but, latterly it has risen into considerable eminence as a sea-bathing place, and its fishing concerns have increased as the demand from the interior of the country has extended. There are here several good Inns, and a number of commodious lodging-houses, with machines and the other requisites for the accommodation of visitors; but in all parts of the year the town, near the beach, presents a somewhat dreary appearance, from the vast masses of sand which the winds of winter drift into the streets, and which are never wholly dissipated, The air of Redcar is, however, salubrious, and, the surrounding country, which presents the picturesque scenes of Marske, Guisborough, Skelton, Kirkleatham, is truly delightful. The population returns of this village present an extraordinary disparity, the females exceeding the males in the proportion of upwards of 3 to 2. The returns of 1821, stand thus: males 279, females 394, total 673. The difference accounted for by the men, who are chiefly in the sea-faring line, being obliged to emigrate, to find employment. It does not appear, however, that the progress of population stayed by the absence of so large a portion of the males, for, notwithstanding this circumstance, there has, during the last 10 years, been an actual increase of 5O Percent. The 10 years before it was retrograde, having diminished from 431, the amount in 1801, to 411, the number in 1811. The only place of worship in the town is a neat Methodist chapel but it has been determined to build a new church. The coast of Redcar is very rocky; and the navigation dangerous; but an excellent nautical chart, by Thompson, has lately been published, which has greatly diminished the number of shipwrecks, and the Life-boat, established here in 1802. which is very spacious and complete, renders these casualties less fatal when they do occur. It is stated on authority, that from 1800 to 1816, the number of vessels driven on shore, or lost off this coast, was, on an average, five annually, but that, from 1816 to 1821, the yearly average has been reduced to one and a half." - -(See Marske by the Sea for directory)

"YEARBY, in the parish of Kirkleatham, wapentake and liberty of Langbargh; ½ mile SSE. of Kirkleatham, 4½ miles NNW. of Guisborough."

[Description(s) edited mainly from various 19th century sources by Colin Hinson. ©2010]

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