Dam End

Dam End

“26: Water flooded from the beck in East Crescent across Arlington Street forming a watersplash across the road then flowing down Dam Street  to the woods.  In 1927 when the stream was dammed at Bank Top the build up of water upstream was so great  that the houses on St. Hilda’s Place were flooded ‘up to their mantelpieces’.  The end cottage on this row bears the number 2.  Number 1 was pulled down many years ago when the road was widened.  To the left of this photograph stands the Primitive Methodist Chapel with whose congregation the Wesleyans amalgamated after Newton Chapel was destroyed. It was jokingly said that ‘it took Hitler to unite the Chapels’.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

Newton Chapel and East Crescent

Newton Chapel

“25: Newton Chapel and East Crescent.  To the left of this picture are the bay windows of the Arlington Hotle, that was allowed to open on Sundays for the first time after the destruction of the chapel.  It was previously standing between two places of worship and it was not considered seemly that it should open on the Lord’s Day.  Next is Cromwell Cottage, formerly known as Sundial House.  Built in the 18th century it is not possible that Cromwell ever visited it..  The original house was divided into three cottages and about 50 years ago the sundial was taken down from the front and stained glass, reputed to be from Handale Abbey, removed from the staircase window.  Part of the glass bore a Latin inscription which when translated  read: Consider: Who is He that suffers.   What is He that suffers.  How great is He that suffers..  For what cause suffers.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

Newton Memorial Chapel

Newton Memorial Chapel

“24: Newton Memorial Chapel was erected in 1876 at a cost of £3,564 on the site of the old Wesleyan Chapel and named after Dr. Robert Newton, a preacher from Roxby, near Staithes.  This was a time of great spiritual awakening and the cause prospered.  On Saturday, 15th March 1941 a German bomb exploded nearby on Church Bank, rendering the chapel unsafe.  The contents were removed from the building and auctioned outside and the chapel demolished –  even the bricks were sold.  Two bungalows were later built on the site.  The old graveyard remains.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

The Old Wesleyan Church, Loftus

The Old Methodist Church

“23: The Old Wesleyan Church, Loftus.  Built in the early 1800s at the  junction of East Crescent and Whitby Road.  Methodism in Loftus dates back to the days of preacher John Nelson, who ‘roused the inhabitants  by his stirring appeals’.  Services were for many years held in cottages until this ‘commodious’ chapel was built.  The working classes of this area were mostly iron workers, fishermen and agriculturalists.  Not many weeks would pass without an accident on land or sea.  The people were ‘born to work and weep, explore the mine or tempt the dangerous deep’ and many found solace in Methodism.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

Haugh Bridge

Haugh Bridge

“22: A view towards South Loftus from Water Lane.  The beck flowed down Dam Street, across the road, under Haugh Bridge and into the woods.  ‘Haugh’ means ‘low-lying land’.  This was the last remaining water splash in Loftus.  The road was made of ‘setts’ and was considerably lower than it is today.  Proof of this can be seen at the bottom of the channel on South Loftus Lane.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

Dam Street

The Police House

“21: This is the old Police Station in Dam Street, or Dam Side as it was formerly known.  Dam Street was second only to North Road as the centre of the village of Loftus.  Beyond the Police Station is the site of the Black Bull Inn and along the street were numerous cottages, a poor house for six men and six women, the first Primitive Methodist Chapel and many commercial buildings, including a brewery.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

Loftus High Street

Loftus High Street

“20: A photograph of the High Street, about 1920, taken from Arlington Street.  Granny Jackson is standing outside Jackson’s grocers on the corner of Dam Street.  The middle shop is ‘Sappy’ Watson’s barbers and the next is Findlay’s provisions.  Mrs. Findlay was said to make ‘lovely’ ice-cream.  The neglected bank across the road was landscaped by Sir Robert Dundas, who ‘re-modelled  a cumbrous awkward embankment facing the houses and public highway.  It was re-constructed, dug, cleaned, planted with shrubs, railed and enclosed, an altogether  delightful improvement’.  Later two grindstones, rescued by Loftus Council from  the engine house on Hummersea Alum Works, were brought via Skinningrove to Loftus and planted on the bankside.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

Lofthouse High Street

Lofthouse High Street

“19: Another interesting photograph of Loftus High Street, about 1900, taken from Arlington Street and showing High Side and the embankment which was remodelled by Sir Robert Dundas, who took a keen personal interest  in restoring and developing  Lofthouse and the surrounding countryside.  His interests were diverse, ranging from agriculture to architecture and he was always concerned for the well-being of his tenants.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

The Alum House, Hummersea

The Alum House

“18: Alum House ruin taken in the early 1900s by T. C. Booth, Congregational Church Minister.  Three people sitting on the ruin are believed to be  Mrs. Jane Turnbull and her two friends from Coventry.  The remains of this building are said to have vanished by 1907.  Alum has been used since the 14th Century for fixing dyes, tanning and in the manufacture of candles and parchment, Prussian blue paint and crayons.  Quarrying of Alum began at Boulby and Hummersea in the 17th Century and continued until around 1870.  The amount of Alum produced here was considerable, but  improved methods of manufacture and the inaccessibility of local supplies caused the industry to die out.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

Hummersea House and Farm

Hummersea House

17: Hummersea House and Farm.  The house to the left was once occupied by Alum Mine managers, Capt. Atkinson and Mr. Hunten.  After the mines closed it became part of a smallholding of 12 acres occupied by Mr. Jim Potter.  The house and the farm next door were owned by Lord Zetland, from whom Mr. T. Hart accepted the tenancy of the farmhouse and 114 acres  in 1930.  It was a mixed farm, growing corn and having sheep and a dairy herd of 30 cows and later producing beef cattle.  Mr. Hart had one son, Tom, and five daughters.  Tom bought the farm and Hummersea House and more land from Lord Zetland in 1962.  Mr. Tom Hart remembers with affection the threshing days, when 16 men lent from local farms gathered to work with the traction engine-powered  threshing machine.  Sacks hired from the railway weighed 4-5 lb. empty and when full of corn weighed 16 stone apiece.  It was very hard work, but there was lots of good food at the farm –  sides of roast beef, lots of vegetables and home-baked fruit pies to follow.”

From “Loftus in old picture postcards” by Jean Wiggins. Reproduced by permission.

We have a hand-tinted copy of this image on the site – rodders