Film ID: YFA 1045 Video of YFA_1045 Staithes STAITHES 1959 Visitor TabsDescription This is an amateur film of the seaside village of Staithes in North Yorkshire. The film includes footage of the houses in the village, the surrounding coast, and fishermen with their catches of crabs. The film begins in a street where two boys appear to be examining something. There is a view over the house tops of the village, focusing on a particular house. The film switches to fishermen in rowing boats arriving with their catch. Then a series of street signs are shown: Abram Lane, Gunn Gutter, Grinkle Terrace and Beckside. Then there are people on the sea shore rocks and fishing boats, with fishing nets. A fisherman is making repairs to his crab basket, while another cleans his boat as his dog watches. He covers a box of fish with salt. There is a view down a street of terraced housing. This is followed by a woman walking along a country road. There is a road sign for Dalehouse, towards which the woman walks, feeding a horse on the way, and passing a field of chickens roaming freely. She arrives at a house on a hill, with a name plate of “Giardini”. The outside and gardens of the house are shown, with an inscription on a garden wall taken from Dorothy Frances Gurney’s poem ‘God’s Garden’. The film returns to the coast, where a group of fishermen stand with stacks of crab baskets. Two women and a man have a walk along the coastal cliffs and the sea shore. Sea gulls are resting on the roofs of the houses. A fishing boat comes into the harbour and is pulled up onto the beach on logs. People watch as the fishermen as they unload their catch of crabs and carry them off in boxes. A woman puts the crabs from a box, belong to W. James, Staithes, into a sack. Various species of birds are feeding on the shore. The fishing boat heads out to sea, and is again seen coming back with a catch. The film finishes showing waves lapping the shore. The End Context Rather like the recently discovered dinosaur bones found nearby, this film shows how the age old method of fishing with cobles had been preserved in Staithes, at least in 1959. Although the small fishing village of Staithes has been relatively unspoilt over the years, here we see places like Grinkle Terrace that have subsequently disappeared. Others, like the wonderfully named Gunn Gutter, seem to have survived the changing times. It isn’t known for sure who made this film; it was the sole donation to the Archive by John Webb in 1994. Although only a small seaside village, Staithes nevertheless boasts that it was once one of the largest fishing ports on the north east coast of the UK. The fish, mostly cod and lobster, as seen here – and the name of a local pub – was transported by rail on the Whitby, Redcar and Middlesbrough Union Railway, until the line was closed, just before this film was made, on 5 May 1958. Its other claims to fame include the Staithes Art Group and as the place where Captain James Cook served his apprenticeship – but now best remembered as the home of Old Jack's Boat, where ‘Old Jack' (aka Bernard Cribbins) lived.