Get out in nature this May half term

From: Natural England
Published: Thu May 25 2023

Pack your May half term holidays with family fun and the beauty of the Yorkshire coast entirely at your disposal

Get out and enjoy some of the UK's finest coastal activities this half term, with the Yorkshire shoreline offering some very special places that anyone can explore completely free of charge.

A new section of the King Charles III England Coast Path, which officially opened earlier this month, spans 21 miles along the Yorkshire coast from Bridlington (Wilsthorpe) to Filey Brigg. It passes popular coastal chalk scenery, the UK's largest seabird colony, where puffins, gannets, kittiwakes and guillemots can be seen when nesting, as well as coves used by 18th century smugglers.

Starting just north of Bridlington near the Coast Guard Station, the route passes along the gently undulating low chalky cliffs rising to the world famous Flamborough Head, with its impressive high stacks and cliffs, the most northerly chalk cliffs in the UK. Visitors can wind around its many coves and bays used by smugglers in the 18th century, before arriving at the two lighthouses of Flamborough, the old Lighthouse from 1674 and the new 1806 lighthouse, both of which are Grade II listed buildings.

The route then leads onto the spectacular Bempton Cliffs, where the magnificent sea bird colonies and the distinctive coastline are easily observed from the RSPB viewpoints. From Bempton the trail keeps to the cliff tops and reaches its highest point on Speeton cliffs where the views north on a clear day take in Filey Brigg, the site of a Roman Signal Station, Scarborough Castle, and Cloughton Wyke in the distance. Sections of new access give new views across Speeton Gap and Flat Cliff Gill, Reighton before entering Filey Country park.

The easy-to-follow walking trail also takes visitors past Sewerby Hall, a Grade I listed Georgian country house and along a 19th Century Promenade, which is part of a conservation area. Primrose Valley which also forms part of the route was previously RAF Hunmanby Moor, when it commandeered during World War II. Speeton Sands is peppered with the remains of WWII coastal defences and when the tide is right, shipwreck remains can be seen including those from the steam collier, Laura, which ran aground in 1897.

As a national trail the creation of the King Charles III England Coast Path has improved the popular ‘Headland Way' route with better signage and easier access, making this Heritage Coastline of lighthouses, abundant seabirds and the northern chalk cliff scenery more accessible for all.

Delivered by Natural England, The King Charles III England Coast Path will be a 2,700-mile long National Trail around the whole of the English coast, passing through some of our finest countryside and some of England's most stunning, dynamic and internationally famous coastal scenery.

Natural England has worked in partnership with local authorities to open 851 miles of the route so far and the trail will be fully walkable by the end of 2024 - connecting communities from Northumberland to Cumbria via Cornwall.

Paul Duncan, Natural England Area Manager for Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire, said:

“With over 850 miles of the King Charles III England Coast Path now open, and more stretches opening this year, the benefits of walking for health and wellbeing through getting closer to nature are becoming more available for all

“This latest route, from Bridlington (Wilsthorpe) to Filey Brigg, will give people all over the country easy access to our spectacular Yorkshire coastline. You can arrive at the coast and enjoy a walk with the most stunning views and fresh air, without spending a fortune this half term.”

Start your adventure and discover your perfect trail with National Trails. So that everyone can make the most of the King Charles III England Coast Path, please follow the Countryside Code. This includes not bringing BBQs or dropping litter, and not lighting fires or camping stoves.

Company: Natural England

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