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Monday, 2 January 2012

Walk 54 Hedon to Thorngumbald via Paull (near Hull)

Walk 54   Hedon to Thorngumbald via Paull (near Hull)

(First leg of English coastal walk – Broadstairs in Kent to Berwick at the border with Scotland).

Map: L/R 107
Distance: about 7 miles
Difficulty:  easy, flat
Terrain: paths and pavements
Access: Parking in the road at both places or you could go to the car park in Paull and just walk the coastal stretch.
Public transport:  78/79/80/277 run from Hull to Hedon every hour or so, less frequent at weekends. 75/77 run from Hull to Thorngumbald every half hour or so Mon – Fri, less frequent at weekends.

It is worth spending a little time looking around Hedon especially the church and the town hall. The latter was built in 1693 and the church was started in 1190. St Augustine’s Church dominates the landscape and is consequently known as the King of Holderness (the name for the area of land in this part of East Yorkshire). The town was at its busiest in the 12th and 13th centuries and was once the 11th busiest port in England but declined as Hull grew..  

A path goes west out of the town and follows Hedon Haven along to the coast. Marsh is on one side, factory buildings, chimneys and terminals on the other. A short way along the coast is the village of Paull with good views of The Humber. This is as good a place as any to mention a few facts about this stretch of water: the Humber is formed by the meeting of the Ouse and Trent; it is not really a river but an estuary about 40 miles long; it forms the border between Yorkshire and Lincolnshire; it has easy access to canals allowing easy access to east and west across the county of Yorkshire; it is brown in colour but not dirty.

The road along the front of Paull has a building which was originally a lighthouse built in 1830 but is no longer in use. Further along is Paull Battery. The first recorded defences here go back to Tudor times. The current listed building (which can be visited) was built in 1864 as part of the coastal defence against Napoleon. It was low lying so enemy ships could be taken by surprise. During World War 2 it was used for the storage of anti-aircraft ammunition. From the coastal side you can walk a little way inland to see the outer walls with their barbed wire and what looks like an air raid shelter nestling in a grassy bank.

A little further along Fairholme Sands, Stone Creek and Hawkins Point can be seen in the distance. A path passes along the edge of Thorngumbald Drain and, via roads, leads into the village of Thorngumbald. The name of this village comes from a thorn bush and the name of the lord of the manor in the thirteenth century – Gumbaud. The village church, St Mary’s, dates back 800 years and is a listed building.

Photos: Main street in Paull, looking back to the industry to the east of Hull from Paull sea front and an old World War 2 battery near the beach at Paull Point Battery.

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