Exploring Yorkshire: Flamborough Head

A couple of weeks ago me and my partner (Sam) made the big step of moving from the small village of Southwell in Nottinghamshire to the city of Hull in the East Riding of Yorkshire. The main reason being because Sam made the decision to go back into education and study for his MSc.

Growing up and living in the Midlands meant I only really ever went to the coast and the beach during the summer holidays, with the typical destination being Pembrokeshire, Wales. This move further north into Yorkshire meant one very exciting thing to me, living closer to the coast! For someone who loves everything about the coast, from the views to the wildlife, moving to somewhere renowned for its stunning coastlines was very exciting, you can imagine my anticipation to explore.

The move also meant i needed a new job and luckily off the back of another interview I was given to opportunity to become a sessional lecturer at Bishop Burton College. As part of this I have taken up teaching a couple of modules on the wildlife conservation BSc course. Meaning a lot of my preparation for teaching would involve visiting/exploring the local area and wildlife. So with so many places to visit within an hours drive, where should we go first?

The first weekend we decided to head to Hornsea (17 miles away) and check out our closest beach. It was a beautiful day, the sun was shining and there was a good wind so the surfers were out in force. After watching the surfers catch some really awesome waves we were then luckily enough to spot a seal bobbing along in the current about 30m out! All in all a pretty good day.

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After that successful trip we decided that the next weekend we would head a bit further north along the coast to Flamborough Head, somewhere that i’ve wanted to visit for ages, and wow it did not disappoint and i can’t recommend visiting enough! We headed to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust’s Living Sea’s Centre situated in the South Landing area (local nature reserve run by East Riding of Yorkshire council) of Flamborough, parked up, had a quick look around then headed to the tops of the cliffs to walk along the outer headland (again a local nature reserve ran and maintained by East riding of yorkshire council) toward the lighthouse and the chalk tower. There was a really low tide during the morning meaning a lot of the beach and rocky shoreline was exposed making for some pretty breathtaking views.

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After around an hour walk we reached to the outer point and the views continued to be incredible and we were greeted by several groups of Harbour seals (Phoca vitulina), and potentially a few Grey seals (Halichoerus grypus) mixed in. Sadly from a distance these two species are hard to tell apart so we couldn’t be 100% sure. As well as marine mammals along the walk we were also joined by a variety of coastal birds, including Herring Gull’s (Larus argentatus), Shags (Phalacrocorax aristotelis) and Fulmar’s (Fulmarus glacialis). A really good opportunity for me to practise my IDing skills.

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After watching the seals for quite a while we headed back to the car to have our packed lunch before heading down to the beach to explore the rocky shore and see what we could find before the tide came in.

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Exploring the yorkshire coastline is probably now a new favourite past time of mine and i can’t wait to head to another part of Flamborough, Bempton Cliffs. Bempton cliffs is a RSPB run nature reserve, which during April-July is home to Puffins (Fratercula arctica) and during the autumn/winter months home to the UK’s largest seabird, the gannet (Morus bassanus), meaning i now have an excuse to go now and next summer.

Hope you enjoyed reading about our little adventures in Yorkshire. My aim is to make this a little bit of a series and document all the places i visit both with Sam and with work, so you can get an idea of what there is to do round this area of Yorkshire.

Till next time,

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