Category: News


On Saturday 20th April  Skinningrove History Group gave

a presentation at the mining museum.  Its’ subject

 ” History of Skinningrove”.

The talk included extracts and readings from a variety of books on North East England, and several early ordnance maps.

There were also readings from various  fictional works that were based on this area.

Stan Binks,  a local artist exhibited several  paintings depicting life in Skinningrove  in the 1960- 70.

One of our oldest  inhabitants,  Pem Holiday,  wrote some wonderful poems, and his daughter Dawn read one of the most evocative to the assembled audience


Our valley stretches near the sea then stretches far inland

It is our home our heritage something we understand,

From here we helped to build the world and really proud we feel,

Famous for our mermaid and famous for our steel,

We played our part in days gone by, with Romans, maybe most,

With their camps and settlements, and lookout on our coast,

John Paul Jones paid his respects, with cannon from the sea

But we survived from his broadside, and now it’s history,

We dug for iron, dug for jet, a harbour once had we

And through this work this toil and strain, our village always free,

A village, that is all it is, we cannot say a town

But we have lived so happy here, so why come pull us down,

They gave us reasons by the score, they say no natural light

Just take a short trip, look around, then come back and fight,

Our valley is wide open, fame and fortune all have we

Surrounded by the countryside yet living by the sea,

A wealth in itself our Skinningrove, the place where we all dwell,

A greatness we could never buy, nor ever want to sell.


The afternoon ended with everyone joining in to sing a VIN GARBETT song


The History Group were delighted with the attendance, and the response they received.

Everyone agreed it was a very entertaining afternoon.

pem ho;iday 1

 If you would like to buy  copies of Pem’s new book  email DAWN  at

or contact the  history group at  skinhist

School photos from the 1950s

These are some photos from the Senior School in Skinningrove. If you can name anybody please leave a comment and we will add names.

Skinningrove School 1950

Skinningrove Senior School 1953 - 1956

Skinningrove Seniors c1955

Skinningrove Senior School c1957




Heritage Open Days 2012

Heritage Open Days is an annual programme of events supported nationally by English Heritage; Skinningrove History Group was pleased to take part in 2012 with walks on 6th and 7th September led by members of the group. 18 people took part in the walks that covered part of Skinningrove Valley Trail and included visits to the village’s Methodist Chapel and Cleveland Ironstone Mining Museum. The feedback from visitors was very positive with comments such as “Extremely good. Thoroughly enjoyed. Very informative. Exactly the right pace with plenty of time for questions” and “Very enjoyable. Saw bits of the “Grove” I didn’t know and walked this lovely place in glorious weather”. Here are photographs showing the walkers and guides at various points on the route.




More artwork

Heritage Artwork in Skinningrove

In recent years a range of artwork has been installed in the village to represent aspects of the rich history and heritage of the area. Here are some examples of this work that’s available for residents and visitors to appreciate.



Skinningrove in the 1950s

The following is a draft list of shops and other public places in Skinningrove in the 1950s. This is a work in progress and any additions or corrections to this information that you can provide will be very welcome. We will acknowledge your contribution if you wish.



Arthur Dart                               Grocer

Nixons                                       General Dealer

Thompson                                General/wallpaper

Hudson and Hewison also ran these shops.



Jefferson                                   General Dealer

Co-operative                            Grocer/Butcher/Draper



Jenny Wood                             General Dealer/bread

Jack and Ivy Alderson took over in the early 1950s

Sanderson                                 Bookmaker



M Saunby  (No 17)                   General Dealer

Smelt                                          Post Office

A Bookmaker was in the upstairs flat next to the Post Office



P Saunby                                   General Dealer



Mrs Milner                                Cake & Easter Egg Decoration

Mrs Milner later moved to Grove Hill

Mr Hamilton                             Wooden Toys to order



Mrs Ward                                  General Dealer



Bill Gargett                                Barber

Jim Adamson                           Fish and Chips

Later owned by Padgetts



Wilf Duncan                             Cobbler



Mrs Hodgson                            Dressmaker

Dickie Humble                         Barber  (147)



Mrs Loughran                          Cake icing



Jim Hird                                    Milk delivery



Mrs Martha Padgett                Made & decorated Easter eggs. She also ran a catalogue.



Meat pie shop                           Loftus Mine

Gas showroom                          Skinningrove Road



Surgery  (Mrs Hodges)          Zetland Row

Mortuary                 Bottom of Skinningrove Bank


Primary School                      New Company Row

Secondary School                 High Street


Wesleyan Chapel  (Warden: Lacey)                       High Street

Methodist Church  (Warden: Smelt)                     Chapel Street

Salvation Army                                                 New Company Row (back)

Institute  (Managers: Mr & Mrs Will                     now Wilson Terrace

Timms Coffee House                                                 The Square

Workingmen’s Club                                                   The Square

                                                                        Other Features

Park with toilets                 Marine Terrace/Beach Road

Secondary School garden       Deepdale Lane

Library (twice weekly)            School Annex

Mrs J Loughran was the Librarian. It moved again to the Village Hall in 1983.

Before then books could be borrowed for 1d from the Post Office

Gala Day (in August)             The Square and elsewhere

Loftus Ironstone Mine (to 1958)

Railway Station (to 1958)

Bus service

Skinningrove in the 1950s


The history group is collecting material that relates to life in Skinningrove in the 1950s. This is an important decade nationally as the country was recovering from World War Two and looking ahead to a safer and more prosperous future. It was also significant locally with the contraction of the ironstone mining industry; people growing up in this area in the 1950s are now near to or at retirement age and will be aware of significant changes in community life during the last 50 or 60 years.

If you have any photographs, documents or simply memories of living in the Skinningrove area in the 1950s that you wish to share with others please contact the history group by email, telephone or post.

Launch of Skinningrove Valley Trail

Friday 9 March 2012 was a busy day in Skinningrove with the unveiling of Skinningrove Valley Trail along with three other local heritage trails. The Worshipful the Mayor of Redcar & Cleveland, Councillor Olwyn Peters, was in attendance together with pupils and staff of three primary schools, councillors, council staff and representatives of local organisations to celebrate the opening of the trails.


The trails aim to add to our knowledge and understanding of the history of the former ironstone mining communities of Skinningrove, Carlin How, Lingdale and Boosbeck and to attract more visitors to East Cleveland. Each trail has an accompanying leaflet to guide walkers along the route, highlighting key points of interest on the way; Skinningrove Valley Trail also has an information board located across the road from the village’s post office. This board presents a timeline of key periods and events in the history of Skinningrove and the surrounding area together with photographs of the village in the past.
The photo gallery shows founder members of Skinningrove History Group standing by the information board which they helped to produce. Left to right are Stan Binks, Tina Dowey, Irene Duck and Wendy Found; in the background can be seen Grove Hill and Zetland Row, two surviving terraces from the ironstone mining village that developed in the late 19th century.
Skinningrove History Group is grateful to LEADER and Groundwork North East for funding and to Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council for its support to the development of Skinningrove Valley Trail.