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Filey - Don't Go Out Of Season!
Filey in general
Member Name: cherwaite
Filey in general
Advantages: Quiet, Beautiful Scenery, Clean Beach and Sea, Relaxing
Disadvantages: No Amenities, No Decent Restaurants, No Nightlife
Filey is a small village situated on the east coast of the UK in East Yorkshire. Further up the coastline is Scarborough and just below is Flamborough and then Bridlington. It is a quaint little old style seaside town and the perfect place if you just want a couple of days relaxation away from everything minus all the commercialization of other seaside places, but does the quiet, almost eerie isolation of it give it a rare sparkle or does it make you want to run towards the nearest civilised area like a mad woman? Here is what I thought..
Why I Went
I have recently been very stressed, through one thing and another I needed some time out away from family, responsibilities and the monotony of the town I live in. So I booked a room for me and my OH in Filey as I had memories of it being a lovely, peaceful area and I felt an urge to go near the sea. Not to throw myself into it I hasten to add. As its November I got quite a cheap deal, a discounted tariff for a good hotel on the very sea front of Filey. So me and my bloke packed up our stuff, set the sat nav and bought some snacks for our journey. A bit dubious about the weather but very much glad to be driving away from everything at home.
To our immense relief it was a glorious day with clear skies and although cold, bearable in our winter coats. It was very easy to get to (shall refer to directions later) and very clearly marked with brown signs every other 100 years leading up to it. You drive on a short road past the local school, over the railway and into the small town centre. This is basically a roundabout which you go straight across into what is a square set out gathering of basic shops, charity shops, two pubs and a tourist information centre. There is a one way system which is simple to work out. Urm look for the blue sign. If you continue on the road past the shops you go on a sharp declined cobbled road which leads to the sea front and promenade. This is a bugger to walk up, I'm telling you, my calves have never felt pain like it!
Once we arrived at the sea front we searched for out hotel which was towards the lower end of the seafront and then struggled with parking. There were no parking spaces whatsoever, so we had to do a circle of the one way system and go back round again and hope someone had shifted. Thankfully they had and we squeezed in but this was an underlying issue that occurred throughout our stay. Then we eagerly went into the hotel with our luggage, mine is a pink wonder bag little number! Booked in, got changed and headed off out.
On Closer Inspection
I love to walk so we decided to explore the front in more depth. Both me and my OH had vague memories of coming here as youngsters with our respective schools and happily flailing our net in the rock pools hoping to catch a crab or jellyfish under the huge craggy cliffs above us. We soon spotted these at the very end in the distance and got excited all over again.
First we passed what I presume are the main attractions for kids here. There was one amusement arcade. Gasp. This is astonishing in the day and age we live in. It has all the standard machines and me and him happily wasted a couple of pounds on the 2p slot games. The only downside was this shut at tea time. I know its out of season but there was still quite a few of us walking around, I was gutted when we went back later and it was shut. There went all my dreams of winning millions.
Alongside this was a RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution) outlet. This sold souvenirs for kids such as Frisbees, pens, pencils etc with all profits made going to aid them. We didn't go inside though as by this point it was getting colder..
Then there was a couple of small coffee shops, a small sea food stall, a junk food stall (obligatory) and about a dozen chalet huts. We had a small bite to eat, of course chips and me a sandwich and him a cheese burger with two milky coffees which were lovely and much needed. I was starving. Outside the coffee shop is a small incline which leads to the beach. On this incline there are a few old disused boats. Getting rusty and with individual names such as ' Boys Own', I only remember that as I started singing Boyzone songs in my head btw.. they are a lovely distraction for small kids to look at up close.
Herein we walked down to the beach. This was a highlight of my time in Filey. The beach was lovely, as you would expect sand, pebbles and then um sea. There was lots of couples walking their dogs on the beach but this is only allowed outside of season and all owners are required to poop scoop the dogs crap up in any event. Also lots of elderly hikers, I wish I had their energy and a few families with small babies in prams and toddlers. There were no donkeys. No litter floating about which was refreshing and the sea was the calming influence I needed. It was going out when we strolled past it and gently kept frothing in and out in small waves. It was clear and clean and a credit to the village people. *YMCA*
Then OH had an idea. Bear in mind by this point the sky was turning a funny shade of grey. He wanted to go for a walk on the Brig. Filey Brig is a long stretch of craggy rocks that juts into the sea. Just done a bit of research and there is folklore surrounding this that the Devil himself built it. After my experience I can only nod my head at this claim.
I quote [from http://www.thorshof.org/zyorks.htm]
This ridge was built by the devil, and when he was constructing it he dropped his hammer into the waters below. The devil plunged into the water to retrieve his hammer and reached out his hand to grasp the handle but caught hold of a fish's tail instead. The devil cried out 'Ah Dick!' and the fish remains known as the 'haddock' to this day. The fish's tail still bears the mark of the devils touch across its shoulders.
That made me chuckle. Ah dick.
Anyhow we trundled along to the end of the beach and the beginning of the craggy path to the brig. This path is on the lower side bottom next to a Cliffside. It is full of small rock pools, bit stones and sea weed swamped murky waters. It was like mission impossible just getting me to the brig. I clung onto OH for dear life. It took us 20 minutes to get to the brig and then I could distinctly feel water droplets which I presumed was spray from the sea. I posed for a few photo opportunities, the landscape and scenery is breathtaking. You can see all way out to flamborough head. Then there was a rumble, the clouds turned black, it went foggy and it started to rain. Rain like there had never been rain before.
There is a small wooden shelter at the bottom of the cliff near the base of the brig but in our wisdom we decided to peg it back to the hotel. We both got drenched. We had only been in Filey an hour and we were both beetroot red and I, in my hypochondriac mode, claimed I had a collapsed lung as I limbered and struggled and slipped across the rocks just thinking about the cup of tea I was going to have back at the hotel. We were soaked through, it went through all layers and once we arrived back in the hotel room. The sun came out. Ha, Very funny.
After this we deserted ship and went to Scarborough for me a winter hat and the OH a winter coat. We both got the feeling we would need them.
Nightlife in Filey
We returned to Filey in hope of a hearty dinner meal. Visions of candle lit bistro and succulent mouth watering plates full of food mountained high were blurring through our minds.
So now.. Where is the restaurants in Filey?
There is no restaurant in Filey.
Yes you heard me. We moped about the square looking for a suitable eating place, neither of us could face the sigh of chips again.
There is one place that claims to be a restaurant, this is really a glorified chippy. Their menu basically consists of 'Chips and fish', 'Chips and Egg', 'Chips and Sausage' blah blah. We trundled on.
There are two pubs. One of these had a menu board outside with basic pub meals on offer, but inside the scary looking barman told us they didn't do food. Ohkay.
The other one was crammed full of young teenagers, who looked underage and verging on depression, giving us 'evils'. We daren't venture any further. My stomach rumbled.
We had to travel all the way down to Bridlington to get a decent meal that didn't include chips in it. 12 miles there and back. Fun.
We arrived back at around 8.30 pm and felt dubious about what the evening offered us. There was a fair in town. We checked it out. This consisted of 3 rides with no one on them and menacing groups of teenagers staring at us like we were aliens. We ran away.
All the shops were closed. The Slots were closed. There were no amenities such as a bowling alley, ice rink or anything really. So we went to Somerfield, got a few snacks and watched Parky on telly until we grew tired and fell asleep.
Filey By Morning Light
The next morning we awoke to the sound of the waves crashing against the side of the beach side and seagulls croaking. It was only half 7 on a Sunday morning but neither me or OH could settle and decided to go for a walk on the front before breakfast which after we would set off to Bridlington before departing home.
Wrapped up in our thermals, We walked along the front and it was peaceful, sunny and clear. The front is made up of a concrete pathway which is lit up at night, there are small seating areas and benches for you to stop and sit down and enjoy the scenery. There is also toilets, but these were shut as it was out of season. There is a small area for little kids that is like a compass on the ground with the North, East, West and South Points marked and other destinations abroad written showing whereabouts they are placed in relation to Filey. In the middle is a little water fountain that springs water into the air and would be great in summer to cool kids down.
It is wheelchair friendly as it is all on a flat but if you wanted to venture into town you have cobbly hills to walk up so this makes things difficult. There are plenty of places to buy kids toys such as spades, buckets and toys to keep them occupied but little else other than the beach and the one amusement for them to do.
A walk along the front only took us half an hour, we took this time to appreciate the scenery and breathe in that fresh North Sea air. It put the colour back into my cheeks!
A good base to travel to other areas
Ideal place for bird spotting as we saw lots of different types close up
Great for ramblers as there is a route that takes you around to Scarborough
Ideal for older generation as there is a peaceful, uncomplicated air about and no music blaring out or drunks hanging around street corners
Plenty of Chip Shops
Clean, Litter free beach and seaside
Surfers regularly use the area so its good for water sports
Good Hotel Selection
Easy To Find
No Nightlife - No point thinking about coming if your after a good booze up!
Hard to find parking spaces on the front
Little amenities for young toddlers and children
Sparse shopping area with cheap goods on offer that are of no great quality
When out of season the rare place that is fun to go is closed
Cobbled roads and steep hills are quite hard work, but I'm a wimp
Filey is easy and straightforward enough to get to. 7 miles south of Scarborough and 10 miles north of Bridlington. Leave the A165 and take the A1039 which leads you directly there.
It is also accessible via railway as there is a station a 2 minute walk from the sea front.
For more information see: http://www.fileytourism.co.uk
If your wondering if it de-stressed and relaxed me. Yes it did. Apart from the obvious annoying parts, I found Filey and the surrounding areas a breath of fresh air. The coastal air and the sea breeze really put a smile on my face. I recommend taking your own food though if you don't want to exist on chips the whole time you are there. It was a very inexpensive holiday (there were no places to spend the OH's cash!) and a humorous one all the same. I have fond memories. Even though the town centre is nothing much to write home about, you cant beat the scenery. From the Bempton Cliffs to seeing Flamborough lighthouse at night, it was a lovely treat.
Copyright cherwaite 2006 xx
Summary: A Seaside Resort On The East Coast Of The UK
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