You can’t control it, so you might as well just roll with it! We all know what a diabolical ‘summer’ most of the UK has had this year as far as the weather goes, I’ve been packing my bags more than once! You can deal with it in two ways, you can sit at home moping, moaning and staring out of the window… or you can get out amongst it and play it at it’s own game. I recently headed off down the East Coast with my camera, despite it raining when I set off, I was determined to make the best of a bad job. I thought I might do a little project about the rain! Much to my surprise, the sun did put in an appearance once I reached the ocean. The icing on the cake though, was the brewing storm behind it all, that’s a good chunk of ingredients for a perfect day snapping to me.

Dog Walkers on The Gare

I love it when I get a ripping sky like this! It’s just gives so much atmosphere. These were the only people on the beach. It looked like a couple of them had been in for a swim, they were now wrapped in towels, it wasn’t that warm. The dogs were Husky’s, dogs that just want to go, they were on leads of course and probably live in a terraced house in ‘Boro, don’t get me started on that one! A great place to wonder round, The Gare. Looking in one direction, on a clear day, the ocean looks clean and blue and the beach stretches for miles. If you do a 180, in complete contrast, you’re looking at a sea of industry, like it or loath it.

The Beach at South Gare…
“Shooting Prohibited’ … how strange! & One of the fisherman’s huts

From Redcar, I carried on down the East coast to Saltburn. I only vaguely remember it, but this is where my Mum and Dad always used to bring us when we were little. That might have been about the time when surfers against sewage (SAS) was born! Oh to have a winnet float past you whilst you’re dipping your toes in. I do remember it being a lot less clean back then. They’ve done a sterling job of tidying the place up. The same English seaside vibe is there, deck chairs, the cable car, fish and chips and icecream. Best of all was the lonely wind break tent in the middle of the beach! You’ve got to admire the Brit’s resilience! The knotted hanky and deckchair stereotype is still alive and kicking. On the beach two girls even had bikinis on, either brave or stupid, it was about 13 degrees.

The lonely wind break tent & Saltburn pier
‘The Bikini’s’

I have to admit I ogled with fascination when I saw the old cable car going up and down. I have to put this down firstly to my endless curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and secondly down to the sad fact that it must be something you do when you reach a certain age. I was amazed to see the thing fill up with water, which is what made it function. First built in 1870, you what. The cable car at the top has its tank filled with water until it overbalances the weight of the car, it then proceeds down the incline under its own specific gravity. When the car reaches the bottom its water is re-pumped to the top and the process begins all over again. Smart as! I didn’t have a go in it, that would have been a step too far.

The cable car lift to the beach

It was all happening down on the beach. People burying each other, digging sand castles… and a couple of  kids getting screamed at for no apparent reason by some foul mouthed witch. Everybody was staring, it was hard not to. I don’t know who I felt more sorry for, the husband; who had his head down in embarrassment, the kids; who were unresponsive to the screaming, or the poor little spaniel puppy who was almost getting choked by it’s leash and was definitely shitting it pants.

No British seaside would be complete without little donkeys. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a happy looking donkey, I think it’s just the way they are. I really love the creatures, I’ve always said I’ll have rescue donkeys when I finally hang up my travelling boots… whether that’ll ever happen! I don’t know about you, but I’ve always had mixed feelings about the donkey ride business, but most of the donkeys you see do look well cared for, credit where it’s due I suppose.

The little donkeys…

As I was about to set off on the next leg to Scarborough, I could see the weather was catching up with me. I climbed back up the steps dodging melted and splattered ice creams under foot on the way. The last shot I got before I got into the car was beautiful, I still don’t think it did the scene credit really. Looking out at that ocean just made me want to get in a boat and sail away. The perfect afternoon came to a bit of a crash after this, I did make it down the coast, but the whether truly turned to shit by then, too many raindrops to dodge. It was a beautiful drive back across the tops though, a smile on my face and another mini adventure in the bag… where to next?

Stormy Saltburn beach

Until next time…

Captain over and out x

For anyone that’s interested… And you really should be, Surfers Against Sewage (SAS)

Keep our oceans clean people




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