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Robin Hood’s Bay goes back in time

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The 20th Victorian weekend in Robin Hood’s Bay was once again hailed a success but is looking for someone else to take over the running of the event.

The village went back in time last weekend as locals, shop owners and visitors donned Dickensian style costumes as they flitted in and out of the even older cottages and cobbled streets.

There were guided history walks, carol services, fossil shows, traditional welly wanging, Christmas trees, lights and festive wreaths, “Propagansey” – a talk on the traditional fisherman’s jumper and old-fashioned games for the children as well as festive mulled wine and mince pies throughout the three days.

Since it started all those years ago as a much smaller event, Barbara Billam has been at the helm but now she is passing it on and hopes different ideas can be brought in.

She said: “I have been doing it 21 years and my age has a lot to do with it. I have been on the committee a long time and you tend to think you know it all but you need other people coming in that have different ideas.

“I have enjoyed it but it has been harder over the last few years for me.”

Barbara, who lives off Mount Pleasant south in the village, said that although it had grown as an event more than they had ever imagined, she was glad that it still retained a family feel.

She added: “We planned to run it for a couple of three years and hoped somebody else would come up with a different idea. It has just been a family event and stayed that way. Even now after all these years it is not commercial - people come but they have stalls and raise funds for their particular charities and causes from the Runswick Bay Rescue Boat to the school’s extension fund.”

It is well known that the event was established to try and boost the village’s economy because at the end of the summer season everything would shut down until the following spring and Barbara is proud the event has achieved that.

She said: “It has worked. A number of the people that live in the bottom of the village are involved and the people at the top take part. There was never the number of B&Bs that we have got now, so there is a big market.

“When you see grown ups and children all throwing wellies on the beach it sets the standard. To see people really enjoying it and to know that they have come to Bay because it is a lovely place and they have seen something of the old village - I get a great deal of pleasure and I am very proud of this village.”

 

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