Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for Scarborough

Scarborough, parl. and mun. bor., seaport and watering-place, par. and township, North-Riding Yorkshire, 39 miles NE. of York and 234 N. of London by rail - township, 1245 ac. and 243 foreshore, pop. 26,238; bor. and par., 2348 ac., pop. 30,504; 3 Banks, 6 newspapers. Market-day, Thursday. Scarborough is situated on a semi-circular bay, and rises from the shore in the form of an amphitheatre. On the N. the bay is protected by a high promontory, on which stands the castle (1136), formerly a fortress of immense strength; it was twice besieged by the Parliamentary forces during the Civil War. The newer and the older parts of the town, separated by a chasm, are connected by a bridge 414 ft. long. Scarborough is much frequented for sea-bathing and for its mineral waters, which have long been in repute. The Spa has beautifully laid-out grounds and a fashionable promenade. The harbour is of great importance to the coasting trade, being used as a place of shelter from the easterly gales, and attention has been paid to it from an early period. On St Vincent Pier is a lighthouse 56 ft. high, with fixed light 58 ft. above high water and seen 13 miles. There is a floating dock for the repair of ships. Some foreign trade is carried on with France, Holland, and the Baltic, and a considerable coasting trade with the Tyne and the Tees. (For shipping statistics, see Appendix.) Shipbuilding, rope and sail-cloth making are carried on, and the fisheries are actively prosecuted. The mfr. of jet ornaments has risen to be an important industry. The fine old church of St Mary was built in the reign of Stephen. A sea-bathing infirmary was founded in 1812, and a large aquarium was opened in 1877. Scarborough was a borough by prescription, first chartered in 1181. It returns 1 member to Parliament; it returned 2 members from the time of Edward I. until 1885.


(John Bartholomew, Gazetteer of the British Isles (1887))

Linked entities:
Feature Description: "parliamentary and municipal borough"   (ADL Feature Type: "cities")
Administrative units: Scarborough CP/AP       Yorkshire AncC
Place: Scarborough

Go to the linked place page for a location map, and for access to other historical writing about the place. Pages for linked administrative units may contain historical statistics and information on boundaries.