The Hull and Hornsea Railway opened 1864, and was closed in 1964 – the main station, Hornsea Town, is still extant, and the former trackbed forms the section of Trans Pennine Trail to Hull.

Hornsea Pottery was founded 1949. In 1953 the business was moved to the former Wade brickworks (Marlborough Avenue), and the Hornsea Pottery Co. Ltd. established 1955. The company became a major local employer with 200 persons working by the 1960s.[82]

By 1864 the population had risen on 1,685, then to 1,836 in 1881, and to 2,013 by 1891, reaching 2,381 by 1901.[3]

By the 1920s the town had grown further, generally infill and fringe development, as well as housing further along Newbegin and Eastgate blurring the separation between the old town and the seaside resort. A park had also been built between the Eastgate and Newbegin filling the area formerly known as Hall Garths. Some housing had also been built in the area around Hornsea Bridge station.[100]

Our clubhouse is the ideal place to relax, celebrate – or perhaps even recuperate!

Hornsea Cricket Club play at the Hollis Recreation Ground. Notable former players include Johnny Briggs (England), and Tom Kohler-Cadmore (Worcs).

Hornsea Mere is a lake of around 1.24 by 0.62 miles (2 by 1 km) which outflows towards the sea by the Stream Dike drain – the drain also separates Hornsea from the Hornsea Bridge suburb.[2]

Civic improvements in the second half of the 20th century included a new fire station on Southgate (1965); the closure of the gas works, and transfer to North Sea Gas (late 1960s); and a new outfall sewer and pumping station (1970s).[81] Small industrial estates were built off Cliff Road in the late 1960s, and near Rolston Road on former railway land in the 1980s.[82] (Hornsea Bridge Industrial estate, Old Bridge Road)

During the medieval period Hornsea was a market town, and also functioned as a fishing town and port. In 1377 the Poll Tax recorded 271 tax payers in Hornsea, and a further 264 at Hornsea Beck, and 96 at Hornsea Burton; in 1490 the parish of Hornsea recorded that there were 340 persons in Hornsea, and 240 at Hornsea Beck, and 50 at Hornsea Burton.[3]

The Hull to Hornsea railway line was closed in 1964/5.[116] Hornsea Bridge Station was later demolished.[78] The railway line's closure led to some contraction of the tourist industry, and decline in the town.[117]

Hornsea Lakeside Lodges offers more space, flexibility, and high standards than a hotel, bed and breakfast, or caravan, for a quick weekend break or a longer holiday and, as a family run business, you can always be assured of a friendly and professional service.

Like other small North Sea coastal resorts Hornsea has a promenade, laid out gardens, hotels, fish and chip shops, gift shops and so on. On the southern edge of Hornsea, near the site of Hornsea Pottery is a shopping centre known as Hornsea Freeport – the Freeport adapted some of the original theme park set up by Hornsea Pottery.

There were several Quakers in Hornsea in the mid 17th century – an early meeting room was in a cottage in Westgate. In 1676 three cottages in Southgate were recorded as being given up for the use as a cemetery by the Acklams, a Quaker family.[57]

Hornsea Burton was located to the southeast of Hornsea Town. By 1840 it was depopulated.[126]

And whilst the adults indulge in a little retail therapy, there’s plenty to entertain the kids, too. In addition to the Neptune’s Kingdom indoor play area and ever-popular climbing wall, we also run a fun-filled programme of free events throughout the year.

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Much of the post war expansion was around south of Hornsea Bridge station, and west of Cliff Road to the north. By 1970 Hornsea's urban expansion had reached near the level maintained until the end of the 20th century.[118] Housing was expanded to the west of the town off the B1244/Westgate on Cheyne Walk and later Cheyne Garth after the 1970s.[119][3] The estate south of the town was expanded with the addition of Tansley Lane c.2000.[3]

By 2011 Hornsea's population was 8,432,[1] increasing from 8,243 in 2001,[123] and from 7,934 persons in 1991.[3]

During the First World War a seaplane base was constructed on Hornsea Mere, named RNAS Hornsea Mere, the base was used to operate submarine patrols in the North Sea. The base was abandoned after the end of the war.[99]

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Hornsea Pottery was established in Hornsea c.1950 and closed in 2000. Modern Hornsea still functions as a coastal resort, and has large caravan sites to the north and south.

Hornsea was promoted as a seaside resort from around 1800, with early attractions including bathing machines, horse races on the beach, and a chalybeate spring near the mere. More facilities were built in the 1830s including the first Marine Hotel.[73]

In 1732 the town was struck by a 'hurricane' which in addition to destroying the church's spire, unroofed around 40 buildings, as well as causing part of the vicarage to collapse, and overturned one windmill.[58][55] Another windmill is recorded on Atwick Road in 1732, and in 1820/1 a new windmill was built – by 1909 it was steam operated.[55]

Hornsea is a classic seaside resort with an extensive sand and shingle beach. A long promenade with newly-landscaped gardens, old wooden breakwaters, plenty of parking and easy access to town facilities.

Hornsea is mentioned as a Manor, as Hornesse, in the Domesday Book.[36] At the Norman Conquest overlordship passed from Morcar to Drogo de la BeuvriËre.[36][37] Drogo fled to Flanders c.1086 after killing his wife, a relative of William I and Holderness subsequently passed to Odo, Count of Aumale. In around 1088 Odo gave the manor, church and lands at Hornsea to the Benedictine St Mary's Abbey, York.[38] Rights of fishing in the Mere also passed to the Abbey.[39]

The civil parish encompasses Hornsea town; the natural lake, Hornsea Mere; as well as the lost or deserted villages of Hornsea Beck, Northorpe, and Southorpe.

Borings suggest the chalk probably lies at around 60 to 70 feet (18 to 21 m) under the sand, gravel and clay beds at Hornsea, though possibly deeper.[10] Water in Hornsea has been obtained from wells and bore holes, though some borings have yielded water contaminated with iron, whilst others failed to reach an aquifer even at a depth of 976 feet (297 m).[11]

Set in stunning landscaped surroundings, located close to an award-winning blue-flag beach and easily accessible from York, Hull and East Yorkshire holiday destinations, Hornsea Freeport is perfectly positioned for a great day out.

An Anglo-Saxon burial ground was discovered in 1913 near the Hydro on Cliff Road – the site was re-excavated in 1982. Thirteen skeletons were initially found, and a further six at the later excavations – a wide variety of grave goods were found including vases, and objects of bronze, ivory, bone, silver, jet and beads. [34][35]

Some early writers (William Camden 1551–1623) thought that ground conditions in the area were evidence of an earthquake, whilst Poulson 1840 supposed the Mere and fossil finds to be evidence of a great flood or deluge in the area.[8] Since at least the late 19th century the geological conditions overlying the underlying chalk have been interpreted as being from a glacial process in origin – both the boulder clay and the gravel beds and morraines.[9]

Structures of note with the parish include the medieval parish church of St Nicholas, Bettison's Folly, Hornsea Mere, and the sea front promenade.

Wade's brickworks was established c.1865 south of Hornsea Bridge station – by 1890 an hydraulic engineering works had been established adjacent west, both close to the site of the modern Freeport. There was also a short lived brickworks north of the mere, and sand and gravel extraction also took place in the parish, as well as lime kiln activity.[82][83] (see also § Geology.)


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Hornsea Town FC are an amateur football team who also play at the Hollis Recreation Ground. Their nicknames include 'Town' or 'The Seasiders'.

Hornsea has an independent lifeboat service provided by Hornsea Inshore Rescue, a registered charity since 1994.[24]

Civic improvements following or coincidental the opening of the railway included a gas works (1864, J.A. Wade); a gasworks for the Lansdowne estate, Cliff Road (1870, W.M. Jackson, closed 1899); improved drainage (1874-5, local board);[81] and a Waterworks on Atwick Road (c.1878, local board);[81][35]

Registered Office: Welcome to Yorkshire, Dry Sand Foundry, Foundry Square, Holbeck, Leeds, LS11 5DL, United Kingdom Company Limited by Guarantee no: 2896762 | VAT No. 170 4702 85

Northorpe was located north of Hornsea. The site was completely depopulated sometime between the late 1600s and 1809.[127]

By the mid 19th century Hornsea comprised three main streets at the eastern end of the Mere – Westgate, Southgate, and Market Place; two streets, Newbegin and Eastgate led eastward towards the sea from Market Place, merging around 200 yards (180 m) from the cliff – the land east of Hornsea town towards the sea was in agricultural use.[62][63]

Most of the civil parish lies at between 10 and 20 metres (33 and 66 ft) above sea level, with the highest points in the parish under 30 metres (98 ft). The B1242 runs north south parallel with the coast through the parish and the B1244 runs westward connecting with the A165 near Leven. Additionally a foot and cycle path, the Hornsea Rail Trail, part of the Trans Pennine Trail runs southwest from the town centre towards Hull.[2]